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The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, is holding a public meeting on Monday, July 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. at its headquarters (8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD) to discuss regulation of online-advertised, short-term home rentals, such as Airbnb, and receive feedback from the community about the issue. RSVP to the meeting and learn more about short-term residential rentals. Note: The meeting will be video cast live and will be available for viewing afterwards on the Planning Department’s website at www.montgomeryplanning.org. The site will provide an opportunity to leave comments. Another meeting has been scheduled in early September to allow citizen comments, provide examples from other jurisdictions and to discuss the direction the Planning Department wants to take in crafting language.
What is a short-term residential rental?
Online services such as Airbnb, Flipkey, HomeAway and VRBO connect homeowners and property managers with travelers who seek the amenities of a home for a short-term rental stay. Currently, a short-term residential rental (less than a month, typical of companies like Airbnb) is not permitted in Montgomery County. However, if a residential owner wants to rent out his/her home or a part of the home for 30 days or longer, then the use is allowed.
What type of laws are being proposed to regulate short-term rentals?
The County Council is considering expanding the opportunities for short-term tenancy so homeowners can participate in the sharing economy. The Council introduced legislation (ZTA 16-03) in February 2016 to relax the requirements on short-term rentals in order to allow for Airbnb or other similar short-term residential rentals. ZTA 16-03 was introduced in conjunction with Bill 2-16, which would update the licensing requirements for all transient housing, including a bed and breakfast.
After holding a public hearing on ZTA 16-03 and Bill 2-16, the County Council asked the Planning Department to reach out to County residents and stakeholders to seek their input in establishing these new regulations. Part of this effort is to provide examples of regulations adopted by other jurisdictions locally and nationally that could assist Montgomery County in crafting its own new legislation.
Once planners have provided outreach and gathered additional information on the topic, they will present recommendations to the Planning Board and County Council.