Site asks if Airbnb rentals adds to Portland’s housing crunch - KPTV - FOX 12

Site asks if Airbnb rentals adds to Portland’s housing crunch

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A new study found that Portland ranks second in the county for the share of commercial listings on the site Airbnb. (KPTV) A new study found that Portland ranks second in the county for the share of commercial listings on the site Airbnb. (KPTV)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A new study shows short-term rentals made through online service Airbnb may be taking away full-time rental space in some cities, including Portland.

The report from FiveThirtyEight.com found that 15 percent of the properties in Portland that are listed on Airbnb are booked for half the year, putting the Rose City behind only Honolulu for these so-called “commercial” rentals.

The site also asked the question if those short-term rentals had an impact on the housing crunch.

A spokesperson for Airbnb told FOX 12 that the analysis from FiveThirtyEight.com doesn’t provide a complete and accurate picture since many of the listings they include lack amenities for a long-term tenant.

Airbnb also noted listings that are shared for half the year make up less than one percent of the available housing stock.

This analysis doesn’t provide a complete and accurate picture of our community. Many entire home listings shared more than 180 nights a year are boutique hotels, traditional corporate housing or guest houses and basement apartments that lack amenities for a long-term tenant. Additionally, this analysis shows that Airbnb listings are a small fraction of the housing market -- Airbnb listings shared for more than half the year make up .07 percent of the housing stock in these cities.

Airbnb host Karri Winn lives in the Mount Tabor area of southeast Portland and lists her basement apartment and an attic space on the popular short-term rental site.

She said her basement apartment is booked almost every day from May through October. Winn said she used to rent out the space to local tenants but found that being a landlord had its pitfalls.

She said she doesn’t think it’s right to rely on homeowners to be part of public policy surrounding the housing crunch.

“That didn’t really make sense to me, it’s kind of an assumption that residential homeowners should rent, and yet, there’s actually no support, economic benefit or otherwise, from the city to participate as part of the delivery of the rental,” Winn said. “We don’t get a tax benefit, there’s nothing that codifies that relationship.”

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