Airbnb, HomeAway and San Francisco have finally set aside their differences and figured out how to automatically register all hosts in the city. The house-sharing service sued the city in federal court after an ordinance was passed by supervisors that levied fines against short-term rental companies that allowed guests to book with unregistered hosts.
In 2015, San Francisco passed a law that required all short-term rental hosts to register with the city. According to San Francisco ,only about 2,100 of the estimated 8,000 hosts have placed their properties in the registry. Now all Airbnb hosts will be automatically placed in the city's database.
"This agreement helps protect the city's precious housing supply by obligating these companies to ensure that all their listings are legal and properly registered," said city attorney David Herrera in a statement. "This is a game changer. The settlement will also make it easier for residents who follow the rules to supplement their income by renting out a spare room or their home while on vacation."
Airbnb spokesperson Christopher Nulty told Engadget that "similar to other agreements we have established with cities all around world, this agreement puts in place the systems and tools needed to help ensure our community is able to continue to share their homes."
The terms of the settlement require that all hosts must be registered with 240 days and that going forward, all properties will have a registration number.