NYC Fines Host $2400 for Renting Out His Home

Airbnb Host Fined

Use to rent out your couch, room, or entire home.

The same city that banned big sodas is now making it harder for New Yorkers to rent out their homes, or for you to find alternative lodging on your next trip to NYC.

This week, a local judge ruled that a resident who used the service Airbnb to rent out his home was in violation of a local hotel law that says that a resident cannot rent out part or all of their property for less than 30 days if the resident isn’t present. Airbnb says that the law was created to prevent people from turning slum apartments into hotels and that the ruling is a mistake.

As a result of the ruling, the resident (actually a tenant of a condo) will have to pay a $2,400 fine for violating the law. Apparently, if the resident had been home at the time of the rental, then he would have qualified for an exception to the law. is a peer-to-peer room/house/couch renting service that connects homeowners (or tenants) with short-term renters. Airbnb provides an alternative to hotels for travelers interested in a different experience. Airbnb also provides homeowners (or tenants) with a great way to make extra money with their extra room, couch, or their entire place when they are out of town. According to the Airbnb website, there are currently over 22,700 places/rooms/couches to rent in New York City through their service.

I’ve used Airbnb on a trip to New York City and I wasn’t sure if the owner was simply a tenant or if he owned it himself. But I do know that the owner was home the entire time, so he would not have been in violation of this law.

If booking through Airbnb, or renting out your space there, be aware of this new law and make sure you are comfortable with the risks. Something tells me users of Airbnb won’t let this faze them. Letting a stranger sleep on your couch is risky enough!

Last Edited: May 25, 2013 @ 12:22 am The content of is for general information purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. Visitors to should not act upon the content or information without first seeking appropriate professional advice. In accordance with the latest FTC guidelines, we declare that we have a financial relationship with every company mentioned on this site.
About Philip Taylor

Philip Taylor, aka "PT", is a CPA, financial writer, FinCon CEO, and husband and father of three. He created PT Money back in 2007 to share his thoughts on money and to meet others passionate about managing their finances. All the content on this blog is original, and created or edited by PT. Read more about Philip Taylor, and be sure to connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, or view the Philip Taylor+ Google profile.


  1. I know they are going to fight it because the law is a little outdated. Seems ridiculous to me.