Housing advocacy group developing new short term rental ordinance after years of data study

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JPNSI has been tracking the growth of STRs throughout New Orleans since 2015.

One year after the New Orleans City Council instituted regulations for short-term rental properties, one affordable housing advocacy group has developed policy changes (and eventually a new ordinance) meant to tackle the city’s affordable housing crisis.

The Jane Place Neighborhood Sustainability Initiative works to reduce the number of short term rentals around the city as part of a broader effort to increase the number of affordable housing units for New Orleanian. After compiling three years of data into one comprehensive report – title “Short Term Rentals, Long Term Impacts” – the group has established several policy change proposals for the city, as well as calls to action for its residents.

JPNSI’s leadership held a town hall Wednesday to present their findings and proposed policy changes.

Jane Place staff have been tracking short term rentals for three years using three data sources: data scrapes from Inside Airbnb; the city’s own public permit database; and open records requests from the city’s attorneys office.

In 2015, Uptown had 44 whole-home short term rentals. In 2018, that number jumped to 93, a 111 percent increase. Whole-home rentals in the Irish Channel increased by 188 percent in those three years, while the Garden District saw a 300 percent increase with a total of 36 whole-home rentals in 2018.

JPNSI have identified several ways short term rentals are damaging housing stock in the city, ranging from the oversaturation of STRs in residential neighborhoods to an overall inflation of housing costs, which pushes people out of their family homes and into other parts of the city. Nearly 85 percent of STRs are whole home rentals, DeDecker said, which eliminates an enormous amount of the city’s housing stock meant for locals.

Loaded with fresh data, JPNSI have proposed five key policy changes to add affordable housing stock back into New Orleans while reducing the “further corrosion of residential neighborhoods by STRs.” Staff are in conversations with stakeholders – including renters and incoming city administration – with the goal to unveil a new short term rental ordinance in June.

“Our intention is to be as transparent as possible, and to include all these stakeholders during the process,” DeDecker said.

Read the full story, including JPNSI’s policy recommendations, at MidCityMessenger.com.

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