Denver, Colorado Tries to Figure Out airbnb

Airbnb: a lucrative gig – if you don’t get caught

From Business Den, August 10, 2015

The 29-year-old owner of Creative Density Coworking purchased the 425-square-foot space in October with his father to rent through Airbnb. The apartment brings in $1,900 each month, and Baute said he pockets about $900 after paying mortgage and utilities.

Baute is one of more than 1,000 Denver residents who earn extra cash by listing their apartments, homes and condos on Airbnb, a 7-year-old home-sharing site that enables travelers to skip the hotel and stay in the heart of some of the city’s most sought-after neighborhoods.

It’s an unregulated practice that has left property management companies and city officials scrambling to address issues associated with short-term rentals. Cat-and-mouse games between landlord and tenant play out as the Denver City Council tries to draft regulations that appease both sides – a balance several other cities have failed to achieve.

“As we’ve seen with San Francisco and Portland, regulations can be well-intentioned but hard to enforce and onerous to the hosts,” said Luke Palmisano, an aide to Councilwoman Mary Beth Susman who researches the short-term housing market. “We want to sit down with as many stakeholders as we can to get their perspectives.”