March 27, 2018

The Massachusetts House passed a long-debated bill on short-term rentals (AirBnb, etc.) last Thursday. The North End’s State Rep. Aaron Michlewitz was the lead sponsor who said the bill provides for baseline safety regulations, creates transparency in the market, establishes a revenue structure based on the different levels of hosts, and allows for cities and towns to further regulate as they see fit.

“This legislation incorporates a balanced approach that ensures the short-term rental market has the proper consumer protection and public safety requirements,”

– State Representative Aaron Michlewitz

The legislation would subject short-term rental units to undergo safety inspections to ensure that basic needs like fire alarms and emergency exits are in place. The bill would also create much needed transparency by requiring units to be registered with the State, and allowing the public and local safety officials to know where these businesses are located.

“The innovation economy has proven that no one size fits all and we cannot use a one size fits all approach in addressing the issues when it comes to short-term rentals,” added Representative Michlewitz.

Under the legislation, cities and towns would be able to enact further restrictions on short-term rentals as they see fit. This coincides with Boston City Council’s request that the House preserve local control as the council continues to debate legislation.