More NJ towns getting rid of Airbnb and short-term rentals
The war rages on in North Jersey against short-term rentals made possible through companies such as Airbnb.
Residents using these services can link with folks looking for a place to stay for a night or two, or a week. And their home, or a room, essentially becomes a temporary hotel.
Due to their proximity to New York City, many residents of North Jersey counties are bringing in big bucks through the rental market. But one by one, municipalities are saying the practice has to go.
In the middle of January, Ridgewood became the latest in a growing list of Bergen County towns to ban rentals of 30 days or less.
"Upwards of $1,000 is the fine for violation of that ordinance," said Mayor Susan Knudsen.
According to Knudsen, town officials received a number of complaints from concerned residents, disturbed by increased traffic volume and different faces and vehicles entering and leaving driveways on a weekly basis.
"We have small residential neighborhoods that were never intended to be bed and breakfasts or homes that were seconding as an inn," she said.
Ridgewood may revisit short-term rentals in the future, Knudsen said, if proper regulations are in place.
Lyndhurst officials will vote on a similar ban against short-term rentals on Feb. 21.
"The reason we're against it is because, first of all, it's against the building and fire safety codes of our town," said Mayor Robert Giangeruso.
He also cited concerns with "transient people coming in and out" every day or weekend.
Bans are in place in Cresskill, Englewood Cliffs, Fort Lee, Glen Rock and Palisades Park.
"Our goal is to work collaboratively with towns in northern New Jersey to adopt sensible regulations that allow residents to share their homes and earn extra money," said a spokesman for Airbnb. "Before deciding on drastic measures like wholesale bans, we hope these elected officials spend some time listening to their neighboring towns about how home sharing can bring in visitors and stimulate the local economy."
Jersey City and Newark reached agreements over the past several months to "legalize" Airbnb in their cities and impose a 6 percent hotel tax.
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