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The government has released the draft code of conduct by NSW Fair Trading for short-term rental accommodation in NSW, which investors using platforms like Airbnb should pay attention to.
The code of conduct follows last year’s legislation into short-term rentals that included a cap on the number of days a property can be letted out.
Part of the reforms included a new code of conduct to be followed by all participants in the short-term rental accommodation industry, including hosts, guests, online platforms and agents.
The NSW government said the reforms would bolster the sharing economy while clamping down on unruly guests.
However the reforms were met with hesitation and the new code of conduct suggests that the owners are primarily responsible for guests, without holding guests accountable.
“The impacts on residents’ amenity resulting from inconsiderate or antisocial behaviour by some short-term rental guests needs to be addressed. The industry is being held accountable for poor guests’ behaviour, it’s these few guests and the culture of party houses that need addressing,” said managing director Greg Channer.
Mr Channer said the rise of popular platforms like Airbnb had put financial returns over culture and certain features of the platforms had locked hosts out of contacting their guests.
“Booking platforms need to take a greater responsibility for unreasonable disturbance, remove ‘instant booking’ features and ensure property managers speak with each guest prior to accepting their booking request and qualify the reason and nature of their stay,” he said.
The code of conduct is currently seeking feedback with all submissions due by 11 September.
The framework includes new exempt and complying pathways to enable short-term rentals to stay within the day limits for Greater Sydney of 180 days and 265 in regional areas.