Short-term rentals under fire

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SARASOTA – “Families do not stay for 30 days on vacation, I can never afford that, not many people can,” said Airbnb Host Chad Waites.

Some Suncoast residents believe Sarasota County short-term rental rules are warding off tourists and investors.

With a 30 day minimum rental period for all dwellings in Sarasota county, Realtor Lisa McBride says people looking for a second home find the regulations not worthwhile.

“They want to use their properties for a week at a time, and during the rest of the time they would love to just have somebody come and stay a week here and there, and they’re not able with the 30 day minimum lease,” said McBride.

“It definitely is a deterrent, think about any family that want’s to come just for a week or somebody that only gets so many vacation days,” said McBride.

Waites says the growth that rentals could bring would help Suncoast businesses immensely, especially after the Red Tide effects.

“We had 43,000 families come through Air Bnb this year. 43,000 new families… That’s huge. And they’re basically cutting off their noses spite their face at this point,” said Waites.

Residents gathered at the Sarasota County commission meeting are sharing their thoughts in hopes for a change.

While some disagree saying the rentals will bring noise and traffic, Waites says there’s a way negatives will be regulated.

“You get reviewed. So we as hosts make sure our property is clean and nice, and also the travelers make sure they keep their properties nice too,” said Waites.

But not all areas are the same, Waites says Canal Road and Beach Road on Siesta Key are allowed rentals without minimum regulations.

“I just don’t think it’s fair to the business owners and myself, because I’ve lived there for so long on Siesta Key even renting… It’s just not fair,” said Waites.

Comments made to County commission were took under advisement and no further actions have been made.

Reporting in Sarasota, I’m Dani Root. SNN The Suncoast News Network.

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