Business License Required for All Short Term Rentals, Bed and Breakfasts in Nanaimo | NanaimoNews NOW
“The regulation would allow short-term rental, accommodation in residential, commercial and downtown areas and in hallways where the operator is a permanent resident of the living unit or suite,” said said Jeremy Holm, director of development approvals, to the board.
Permanent residents would be defined by the owner making a property their primary residence for at least eight months of the year and the owner declaring it as their domicile for legal purposes such as on a driver’s license, filing income tax or voter registration.
The new rules would also allow the rental of an entire house for the other four months of the year, in addition to renting out parts of the property like a bedroom or suite.
“The existing limits that currently apply to the number of rooms and guests allowed in guesthouses, which are currently permitted by city regulations … would apply to other forms of short-term rental accommodation. “said Holm.
These restrictions limit the number of rooms that can be rented in a two-person house for up to four adults. Children are not officially counted as “guests” in the rules.
Council also passed the first two readings of a parking by-law that would require one parking space for each short-term rental unit.
Changes to the zoning by-law are subject to a public hearing, which will take place at a later date.
A survey conducted by the City in April and May 2021 found that support for business licenses for short-term rentals was predictably divided. Non-operators or tenants ranged between 77 and 82 percent in favor of licensing, compared with just 23 percent of operators.
A majority of homeowners, whether renters or not, are in favor of renting an entire home in the short-term market for the four-month limit. Only 44% of tenants are of the same opinion.
The City also met with various interested groups and organizations, including the Nanaimo Hospitality Association, Vancouver Island University and the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital.
Short-term rentals have proven to be a valuable area of the local market with properties popular with doctors or medical students visiting Nanaimo to work at the hospital. Rentals are also a frequent transition for new college students to the area until they can find a long-term option.
Mayor Leonard Krog was absent for the discussion, citing a conflict of interest. The other councilors unanimously adopted all of the staff’s recommendations.
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