Toronto condo owners want city to halt Airbnb rentals

TORONTO — Some Toronto condo owners are looking to list their units on short-term rental sites like Airbnb, while others are calling on the city to stop them, according to CBC News.

TORONTO — Some Toronto condo owners are looking to list their units on short-term rental sites like Airbnb, while others are calling on the city to stop them, according to CBC News.

“We constantly get complaints,” said Linda Pinizzotto, who is president of her downtown condo board and the head of the Toronto-based Condo Owners Association, quoted in media reports.

Pinizzotto says the constant come-and-go of Airbnb guests is turning her building into a de-facto hotel.

“They knock on a resident's door asking if they can borrow salt, they complain because they can't find coffee machines,” she said. 

Increased traffic from short-term rentals is also leading to higher utility bills and greater wear-and-tear on common areas, according to Pinizzotto.

“These buildings were not made to be hotels, they were made to be primary residences,” she said. “The value of these buildings will decrease if the maintenance fees go up too high.”

“It's a bomb that's going to explode down the road if we continue to allow this type of thing without proper legislation.”

Toronto real-estate broker Mary-Ann Semen says she's also noticed increased frustration from condo boards and management companies.

“A lot of condominiums now, if you go into their elevators to show a property they have a sign posted, 'No more short term.  Minimum leases three or six months.'”

Semen works with potential tenants to secure long-term rentals, mostly in investor-owned condominiums. She says while short-term sites like Airbnb are a good stop-gap measure in a hot rental market, she's seeing a backlash from property managers.