City Council member Demetrus Coonrod on Tuesday raised the concern about short term vacation rentals taking affordable housing off the market. She has been working with City Attorney Phil Noblett to create a new plan based on the way Nashville has been handling the same problems.
Any vacation rental by owners would be allowed only in owner occupied houses. Any that are already in existence in houses that are non-owner occupied can be grandfathered in, just as long as their permits are renewed annually and on time.
Ms. Coonrod said she is supportive of short term vacation rentals, but she said people are buying up housing for that purpose. Many units sit idle with no tenants when they could be used for housing and the betterment of the community, she said.
Council member Jerry Mitchell said that people are buying property specifically to use for short term rentals and his concern is that multi-family housing is trending toward becoming hotels. He would like to put limitations on units in multi-family housing such as apartments or condos, particularly if they are not selling.
Attorney Noblett said an ordinance now, only allows two units for VRBO, in any multi-family dwelling.