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Short-term rental accommodations

We are considering bylaw changes to allow short-term rentals in some circumstances. These changes will add fairness by treating short-term rentals like similar businesses, while protecting the supply of long-term rental housing and managing impacts, such as noise.

'Short-term rental' describes the practice of renting out a home, or a room in a home, or even a bed, for vacation stays of 28 days or less, commonly through an online platform such as Airbnb. Under our existing zoning bylaw, bed and breakfasts, and boarders and lodgers are permitted, but short-term rentals are not.

We are considering a regulatory framework and bylaw changes to allow short-term rentals and we are currently seeking input on your preferences for where we should permit short-term rentals. Learn more and have your say.

News and updates

May 9, 2022 – Report to Council 

Staff presented a report to Council with proposed community engagement activities and timeline related to secondary suites, sensitive infill housing types, and short-term rentals.  Council directed staff to proceed with the public engagement and report back with findings and recommendations.  

April 11, 2022 – Council workshop

Staff presented a report to Council identifying options that could lead to increased housing diversity in single family neighbourhoods.  The Committee directed staff to seek public input on secondary suites, infill housing, and short-term rentals.

November 25, 2019 – Council workshop

Staff presented a report to Council with the proposed regulatory approach and a summary of public engagement. Council directed staff to conduct additional engagement.

June – August 2018 – Public engagement

From June – August 2018, we hosted an online survey and informational pop up events, where we asked residents to share their thoughts on our proposed bylaw changes.

June 11, 2018 – Report to Council

Staff presented Council with a regulatory framework to permit short-term rentals, including specific bylaw amendments. Council directed staff to seek public input on proposed regulatory approach.

Proposed bylaw changes

Proposed rules for short-term rentals

To enable short-term rentals, bylaws would be amended to:

  • include regulations that a short-term rental can only be operated in the principal residence, and with a valid business licence
  • require dedicated off-street parking for each short-term rental unit
  • Establish emergency contact and safety standards
  • Create new fines and enforcement tools
     

Review the proposed bylaw changes in depth

To enable short-term rentals, we will need to make amendments to four existing bylaws. These are the proposed amendments:

Zoning bylaw

We would revise the zoning bylaw to create a regulatory framework for the operation of short-term rentals in the District.

The bylaw would be amended to:

  • include regulations that a short-term rental can only be operated in the principal residence and with a valid business licence
  • allow a maximum of six patrons at one time
  • have one dedicated on-site parking space

Review the current zoning bylaw

Business licence bylaw

We would revise the business licence bylaw to regulate a short-term rental business similar to how we regulate bed & breakfasts.

The bylaw would be amended to require:

  • an annual business licence to operate a short-term rental
  • inclusion of the business licence number when advertising a short-term rental
  • emergency contact info and safety equipment for short-term rentals and bed & breakfasts

Review the current business licence bylaw

Fees and charges bylaw

We would revise the fees and charges bylaw to create a $200 fee for a short-term rental business licence, which will cover costs for administering the short-term rental program.

Review the fees and charges bylaw

Bylaw notice enforcement bylaw

We would revise the bylaw notice enforcement bylaw to create offenses for short-term rental regulations, allowing us to issue fines of up to $500 per violation of the rules.

Review the bylaw notice enforcement bylaw

Background

Why are we proposing these changes?

Short-term rentals are part of the emerging sharing economy, and active regulation will help us manage any negative impacts.

These changes will allow property owners (or tenants, with permission of the property owner) to earn additional income from their properties and create opportunities for short term stays by visitors, while helping to maintain the pool of affordable long-term rentals, and manage any impacts to the surrounding community, such as noise and parking.

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