Currently there are over 2500 listing on Airbnb in San Francisco with just under 500 of those in the Mission. The Mission has become a destination for tourist attracted to the weather, popular restaurants and its proximity to so many City destinations. This has given insensitive for landlords to withhold their property from the rental market in order to make up to three times the current monthly average rent which is already highest in the country.
This further compounds an already tight rental market in which Latinos have faced the blunt end of Ed Lee's romance with big tech and big money! We need to fight back and let them know we are still here! Every single day when I stand my balcony overlooking the 16th Bart Plaza I see dozens of tourist coming up the escalator with their luggage heading to their place of lodging, the rooms they rent are the we used to live and raise our families. Now the accommodate those who wish to make the Mission their playground.
On Thursday, April 23 at 3:00 pm, the Planning Commission will take up legislation put forth by the Mayor at the request of Airbnb that regulates Short-Term Rentals and requires hosts to pay their normal taxes. On its face this sounds reasonable however there is no enforcement mechanism attached. Bookings agents and Landlords can openly and freely violate the law because no one will be looking. We can look to Portland to prove this point. Last year the City Council passed an ordinance requiring registration of hosts properties and payment of taxes. The legislation had no enforcement mechanism and as the deadline for registration passed only 90 of 1600 hosts had permits. Portland estimated it lost out on over 500K is taxes due. It is simply irrational to believe property owners will willingly turn over money when no one is watching!
Click here for flyer with talking points