A Bright Future for Home Sharing in Vancouver

By Alex Dagg, Director of Public Policy, Airbnb Canada

Earlier this year, Airbnb and the City of Vancouver entered into an agreement to create a coordinated host licensing system to support our responsible home sharing community.

Home sharing has come a long way in Vancouver, from being completely unregulated to now enjoying a framework that legitimizes and provides clarity for the thousands of families who rely on Airbnb every month.

As part of our work with Vancouver, we agreed to make it easier for our host community to comply with the city’s short-term rental rules by requiring hosts, who share their homes for less than 30 days, to display a business licence number on their Airbnb listing.

Over the last several months, we worked with the city to develop and implement this system and educate our hosts about the licensing process.

September 1 marked the full implementation of our agreement with the city. As part of our commitment to Vancouver, Airbnb deactivated listings that did not enter a business licence number on their listing, which would have been obtained by registering directly with the city by the August 31 deadline.

This unique licensing agreement provides current and future hosts with the certainty and clarity they need to home share responsibly.

We are pleased to share these insights about our community in Vancouver as it stands currently:

  • Today there are 4,798 active listings on our platform, including more than 30 per cent that are exempt from the licensing agreement (such as 30+ rentals, traditional B&B’s, and boutique hotels).
  • As part of this process we removed 2,482 listings, nearly 70 per cent of which had not been booked in the 12 months prior to the licensing implementation.

The travel industry is transforming. We’re supporting local governments as they work to accommodate change in a way that makes sense for their own communities. Airbnb is the only platform that engaged with Vancouver to create an agreement that helps support a responsible home-sharing community.

Home sharing isn’t going away. As more and more Canadians choose a flexible, affordable, and convenient option, it will only continue to grow. We encourage other platforms to cooperate with the city and be good partners during this time of transition.

We thank city officials for their hard work and willingness to collaborate with us to implement a system that makes sense for Vancouverites. In the coming months we will continue to work together to ensure the agreement is a success.

We look forward to a bright future in Vancouver with a strong foundation of dedicated hosts, clear rules and a streamlined licensing process that supports a responsible home-sharing community.