Dover Eyes Tighter Restrictions on Short Term Rentals

DOVER, Del. — Dover could require property owners who want to rent out their homes for short-term rental services like Airbnb to use that building as their primary residence, under a new ordinance being introduced Monday night.

The legislation establishes a framework for the city to regulate short-term rentals, which typically involve people renting their home using websites like Airbnb to people for a series of days or weeks. The ordinance was created following complaints of homes being rented for short time periods being used as “party houses.”

“We’re talking about one or two properties in the city that are actively used for short term rentals and have been problems — parking, trash, late hours, noise, those kinds of things,” said City Planning Director Dave Hugg.

The legislation also states that a property owner hosting a short term rental has the responsibility to not knowingly allow any illegal or criminal activity on the property nor permit the guests to create a public nuisance. It also places limits on the number of guests that can stay in a residence being used for short term rentals.

The city council could approve the measure as early as this month.

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