Posted by 17 October 2018
Residents of the Bay State who rent their homes on Internet platforms like Airbnb may soon be facing new rules and taxes. Governor Charlie Baker and legislator cannot seem to agree on what these regulations should be, however.
Legislators passed a bill in August that would require homeowners with short-term rentals to register with the state, meet insurance mandates, and collect and pay the same taxes that hotels do. The bill would also allow local governments to regulate and impose taxes on these short-term rentals.
Governor Baker did not veto this legislation, but he did suggest some changes that would need to be made before he signed it. One of these modifications would be to exempt anyone from these new regulations who rented their homes for fewer than 14 days. His changes were generally aimed at reducing the legislation’s burden on those who use short-term rentals to earn some extra money, not as a full-time moneymaking operation.
The governor’s staff is meeting with legislators to find a way to resolve their differences. This leaves local governments in limbo. Some have already enacted their own regulations, but they lack the ability to impose taxes. They are pressing state lawmakers to come to a decision on a final state bill.
Massachusetts joins other states in looking at regulating short-term rentals. As online platforms such as Airbnb become popular, hotels have pressed local and state governments to impose regulations on homeowners using these services.
Do you think that homeowners using services like Airbnb should be regulated and taxed the same as hotels are?