AirBnB rentals just as illegal as any other under-30-days rental

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Tuesday, May 5 2015

Whether using an online service like Airbnb or other promotional methods, renting a residential home for less than 30 days on Gabriola is still illegal according to Miles Drew, Islands Trust Bylaw Enforcement Manager, who was asked about the popular online service this past week.

Drew explained that advertising on Airbnb does not affect the lawfulness of a tourist accommodation operation. 

The only way to change this is to take out a Temporary Use Permit, which can be applied for at any Islands Trust office including the northern office located on North Road.

Drew pointed out the under-30-days home rental regulations are different than the legal bed and breakfasts which operate on Gabriola.

“In general, bed and breakfasts operating in a residentially zoned area are lawful provided they follow the regulations for B&Bs found in the Gabriola Island Land Use Bylaw.”

Those regulations limit the number of bedrooms permitted for B&B use dependent on lot size and other factors.

As well, the bed and breakfast use must be in the principal single family dwelling and not in any accessory building; breakfast is to be the only meal served; no additional set of cooking facilities may be provided for the bed and breakfast use.

As such, some of the Gabriola listings on Airbnb could be for legal bed and breakfasts which conform to the regulations.

They could also be for under-30-days vacation rentals which have an active temporary-use-permit