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Pending approval, the city is already gearing up to enforce expensive new Airbnb fines

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Last month, the city announced legislation that would make it illegal to even advertise a short-term rental of under 30 days, and promising to hit violators with fines up to $7,500 if they're caught. And while they're holding off on enforcement until an ongoing lawsuit between Airbnb and New York State is settled, last week, they made it clear that they'll be ready to hit the ground running when it comes to punishing wayward hosts.

The Mayor's Office released a notice confirming the proposed rule changes, as well as the steep penalties, which would be set at $1,000 for first violation, $5,000 for second violation, and $7,500 for the third violation. "The executive order and rules published today are steps necessary to enable us to enforce the state law. Our focus has and will continue to be operators who take permanent housing off the market and put people in unsafe conditions," said the Mayor's Deputy Press Secretary Melissa Grace in an emailed statement.

A standard hearing for the new rules is set for December 19th, and while the city has vowed to wait until the new legislation is officially in place, and Airbnb has settled its lawsuit against the state—the latter of which may happen sooner than expected, per the Wall Street Journal—it would seem that the Mayor's Office of Special Enforcement is ready to start swooping in on hosts as soon as feasibly possible. Meaning, then, that all those short-term rental hosts who haven't changed their ways since the first announcement might be in for a rude awakening.

 

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