A new code of conduct for short-term rentals in New South Wales includes a “two strikes and you’re out” policy that could result in problematic hosts and guests being banned from holiday letting for five years.
- NSW Fair Trading will keep a register of problematic holiday rental hosts and guests
- If three complaints are received, the host or guest can be banned for five years. On-the-spot fines of $550 can also be issued
- The code comes into effect on December 18
The industry code will come into force on December 18 and includes standards to be followed by hosts, guests, letting agents and online booking platform operators.
Minister for Better Regulation Kevin Anderson said the code included abiding by criminal and local planning laws including keeping noise to an acceptable level.
Anyone caught breaking the code will be reported to a property agent or the police who will then forward the complaint to NSW Fair Trading.
Mr Anderson said an exclusion register would be kept by Fair Trading and a “two strikes and you’re out” policy would mean anyone breaching the code can be banned from holiday letting for five years.
He said $550 on-the-spot fines could also be issued, escalating to several thousands of dollars for serious breaches of the code.
“If you wouldn’t do it in your own house, don’t do it in someone else’s community and think you can get away with it.”
Airbnb head of public policy Derek Nolan said the company was already extremely strict in its dealings with bad behaviour and had taken 400 properties off their platform in recent months for not complying with guidelines.
“We welcome the code of conduct — it will reinforce the policies we already have on Airbnb,” he said.
The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment is also developing a government-run premises register and a state environmental planning policy for short-term rental accommodation to come into effect in 2021.
Relief in Byron Bay
Byron Bay resident Michelle Pullen said the new rules were badly needed in her home town.
Ms Pullen lives near several properties rented on Airbnb and says “party” crowds are a constant problem.