Saturday, May 2, 2015
Assemblywoman catches AirBnB'ers on hidden camera
From CBS 2:
Business is still booming for Airbnb in New York City, even though a report last year from the state attorney general found that most of the listings in New York City violate the law and take affordable housing off the market for New Yorkers.
As CBS2’s Sonia Rincon reported, Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal, D-Manhattan, went undercover to see exactly how it’s happening.
Rosenthal used a hidden camera and got one leasing agent to admit he didn’t really live at an apartment and that it wasn’t really supposed to be rented short-term.
“If somebody asks you something, never mention in the building Airbnb,” he told her. ” … Because this is supposed to be residential.”
State law prohibits someone from renting out an apartment for less than 30 days unless that person is also staying in the unit.
But those aren’t the types of places Rosenthal found on Airbnb.
“Thousands of units that belong in the housing market to rent to New Yorkers are taken off the market and reserved for tourists,” Rosenthal said.
She says the apartments she saw had no evidence of anyone living there.
“So, in fact, they were hotel rooms,” Rosenthal said. “There were no clothes in the closet. There was no food in the kitchen.”