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Ask the Lawyer: How do we stop Airbnb and short term rentals in our condominium community?

Condo.ca reader asks: “Do we need to have Airbnb or short-term lease explicitly prohibited in the declaration and bylaws to stop people in our community from renting like a hotel? It’s a big problem in our building, lots of noise and complaints but no one doing anything about it. What do you suggest we do pro-actively? Send letters to owners and tenants? Ban community facilities? Can we even do that? I know there’s a new city by law coming, but we’re desperate to stop this now.”

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Many condominium owners are against short-term rentals in their communities. Issues such as noise, security and use of common facilities are all issues. Lawyer Richard Hoffman answers a reader’s question about how to stop the short-term leaser.

 

Richard Hoffman answers: The use of Airbnb by condo owners has become a major issue. In order to determine if your condo building permits Airbnb you must check your declaration. Some declarations may contain language which prevent units from being leased for shorter than 30 days. If that is in your Declaration, then owners will not be able to use Airbnb.  Other declarations allow for  transient or hotel-like occupancy. If your declaration does contain that language then Airbnb will be permitted.
If the declaration is silent then the Corporation can pass a rule  preventing this kind of leasing. The Condominium Act allows a corporation to pass a rule to promote the safety, security or welfare of the owners or to prevent unreasonable interference with the use/enjoyment of the common elements and units.  A corporation can therefore pass rules which prohibit leases of less than 3 months).

 

RICHARD P. HOFFMAN

Richard Hoffman has been a member of DelZotto, Zorzi LLP since 1992, practicing in the area of condominium law. He has represented condominium corporations and unit owners through all stages of the litigation process and at all levels of Ontario Courts (Superior Court of Justice, Divisional Court and Court of Appeal). He is well experienced in handling all types of condominium litigation, from applications to enforcing compliance with declarations, by-laws or rules, to handling multi-million dollar claims for budget misrepresentation. He has also advised condominium corporations of various sizes on all facets of condominium law.

Richard is presently a member of the Canadian Condominium Institute and regularly lectures on contract and agency law in the condominium context at Humber College, as well, he is a regular contributor to various condominium magazines and has contributed to the condominium section of the Toronto Star.

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