A US judge dismissed Airbnb's lawsuit against New York City over proposed restrictions on short-term rentals. This is a setback for the company as New York is one of its main tourist accommodations markets.
In June, Airbnb filed a lawsuit against New York to delay implementing new laws to regulate short-term rentals and prevent illegal activities during the housing crisis. These laws would require hosts to register with the authorities. However, on September 5th, Judge Arlene Bluth dismissed Airbnb's claim. She stated that it is reasonable for the city to require hosts to register and ensure the legality of their accommodations. Local media reported that Airbnb criticized this requirement as a "de facto veto" of their business.
The decision to impose restrictions on short-term rentals in New York has been criticized by Airbnb's director of global policy, Theo Yedinsky. He argues that the limits will negatively impact tourism and the non-central neighborhood residents who rely on sharing their homes to make ends meet and support nearby businesses. Originally scheduled for May, the restrictions were delayed twice due to staffing problems and demand. The city already prohibits entire apartments from being rented for less than 30 days. However, it allows rentals below that term if the host is present and has no more than two visitors. Under the new measures, hosts must register with a particular mayoral office (OSE), a process that both Airbnb and its clients have criticized for being slow, invasive, and unlikely to gain approval while raising privacy concerns.
It has been reported that Airbnb's lawsuit revealed that short-term rentals in New York City generated a net turnover of €77 million in 2022. Additionally, the company's revenues for the year were 7,666 million. Recently, Airbnb's latest financial results showed that in the second quarter of 2023, the company had a record of 7 million active accommodations worldwide. The company achieved a profit of 650 million dollars, a 72% increase compared to the previous year.