On the heels of New York's new rules banning short-term rentals under 30 days, New Jersey may be following suit: The Observer reports that a new bill recently received a successful 7-0 vote in the Assembly Tourism, Gaming, and the Arts Committee (a committee of New Jersey's assembly), and would enact a similar ban on rentals for a period of less than 30 days.
Specifically, the bill would give municipalities the option of barring property owners from renting out their spaces for less than a month, and would require that hosts be the legal owner or tenant, and the property have no outstanding code violations. It would also demand that only one unit be rented out in multi-unit buildings; property liability insurance also has to be in place for at least $500,000. Violations could lead to fines of as much as $100 per day.
In other words, Jersey lawmakers are hoping to enact rules that will guarantee some added safety for visitors who are staying in short-term rentals, and to prevent the kind of mini hotel empires that some unscrupulous landlords have created via Airbnb.
The bill is being sponsored by Assemblywoman Valerie Vanieri Huttle, who said, "The current practices of short-term rental businesses lack the necessary safety precautions for our municipalities. We want residents and tourists to enjoy the options provided by companies like Airbnb, but not at the expense of neighbors who live there on a permanent basis."
Of course, it's still TBD if the bill will officially pass, and if so, which municipalities will opt to enact it. But if you were thinking about moving your career as a shady Airbnb landlord over to Jersey City, you may want to think twice. And if you're simply a Jersey resident who occasionally rents out their home, be prepared to meet stricter new requirements to keep things above board.
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