Politics

Anaheim to consider banning new short-term rentals from residential areas

Short-term rental owners Valerie Van del Zilver and Rita Connick say Anaheim shouldn't ban vacation rentals just because a few bad-apple operators.
Short-term rental owners Valerie Van del Zilver and Rita Connick say Anaheim shouldn't ban vacation rentals just because a few bad-apple operators. "We're want to work with the city and neighborhoods," said Van de Zilver.
Erika Aguilar/KPCC
Short-term rental owners Valerie Van del Zilver and Rita Connick say Anaheim shouldn't ban vacation rentals just because a few bad-apple operators.
Hotel union workers attend a press conference Monday in a South Anaheim neighborhood organized by an Orange County community activist group petitioning Anaheim city officials to ban short-term rentals.
Erika Aguilar/KPCC


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Stricter proposed regulations for short-term rentals in Anaheim could significantly reduce the number of listings in the Orange County tourist town and stop new ones from popping up in residential neighborhoods.

The Anaheim City Council is expected to vote Wednesday on whether to approve new ordinances imposing higher fines and fees, limiting the number of occupants that can stay at a short-term rental, specifying parking restrictions and implementing a package rules for property owners to follow.

New short-term rentals where the property owner manages or lives off-site would only be allowed in commercial zones under one proposed ordinance.

“Thousands of people are passing through our neighborhood,” said South Anaheim homeowner Jeanine Robbins. “Thousands of strangers.”

Robbins is part of a coalition of homeowners, renters, union workers and others who have rallied against the rapid growth of short-term rentals in Anaheim.  The boom has caused neighbors to complain about loud guests, traffic and parking woes.

Two years ago, there were 400 short term rentals. That number has gone down to about 365, according to a city report, in large part because of a moratorium in place since last September on new rentals.

After a series of community meetings with residents and rental operators, city staff came up proposed regulations, including requiring:

Another proposed "amortization" ordinance would phase out existing short-term rentals in residential areas. It would allow property owners to operate long enough to recoup their investments .  

Alan Bynder, 67, has two short-term rental properties. He’s with a group called the Anaheim Rental Alliance, which represents property owners.

He said the elimination of short-term rentals in residential neighborhoods will impact families who vacation in Anaheim. Most of his clients, he said, want a house with a full kitchen and plenty of room for the whole family to stay together as opposed to renting several hotel rooms.

“I frankly couldn’t not have imagined that we’d have this kind of problem where they didn’t want short-term rentals,” he said. “The economy is so dependent on tourists. That’s what Anaheim is.”

Yet another proposal, a one-year city pilot program would issue 50 permits to residents wanting to list their house for short stays up to 30 days as long as the homeowner stays on-site while their guests are there, too.

The meeting starts at 5 p.m. at Anaheim City Hall.