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New Laws May Help Enforce Short-Term Rental Regulations

Posted at 5:42 PM, Aug 12, 2016

In 2015, Nashville city leaders passed laws allowing short term rentals to thrive in Music City.

"What it effectively did was said, 'We're opening up a large swath of our residential fabric to commercial activity in the form of basically hotel, motel type activity,'" said District 19 Councilmember, Freddie O'Connell.

Now they're working to make sure the rules that have been in place now are enforced.

"Frankly, I don't think there's any question that codes is having difficulty with the enforcement piece of it," he said.

In mid-August, the first of three votes needed for a set of new ordinances that aim to help codes enforce the rules will be held.

"If you're listing in Nashville, list your permit number," O'Connell said.

O'Connell has been one of the members co-sponsoring the ordinances and said one would require property owners seeking a rental permit to sign an affidavit making sure all homeowner associations involved are on board.

Then there's the issue of occupancy. One ordinance would further limit the number of guests at a short term rental.

"It tries to make inside the metro code some consistency on what occupancy is allowed," O'Connell said.

Elizabeth Smith has been a property owner and short-term renter. She's also the founder of the Nashville Area Short Term Rental Association.

"We want to see all the regulations we already have enforced," she said.

Smith said a large number of property owners want to be a part of the solution moving forward.

"There are many things already on the books that are not enforced, so to add new things without fixing those things seems to be counterproductive to us, but we want to sit down and collaboratively solve the problem," said Smith.