Lawmaker wants apartment-sharing ads in NYC to include address

ALBANY — An Airbnb critic is introducing legislation requiring anyone advertising apartment units in New York City on home-sharing sites to include full location details.

The bill sponsored by Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal (D-Manhattan) would require the posting of the address, including street name, street number, apartment number, borough, town and county of the unit being offered.

Rosenthal said the bill would create “an open and honest system that prioritizes transparency and safety.”

She said the lack of addresses makes it easier for commercial operators to establish what are effectively illegal hotels in apartment buildings that slice into the affordable housing stock.

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“Connecting online activity with offline identity shines some much-needed light on the process, provides guests with information pertinent to their reservation and ensures enforcement agencies can effectively protect residents, guests and community members alike,” she said.

If the bill becomes law, a person could face fines of $1,000 for a first offense, $5,000 for a second, and $7,500 for three or more.

Enforcement would be handled by the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement.

Currently, she said, many Airbnb advertisers operate behind a “veil of secrecy.”

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Supporters of the bill, which is slated to be unveiled Tuesday with a City Hall press conference, said it would force Airbnb to make it a practice of publicly disclosing all addresses of short-term listings out of fear of alienating its hosts that are hit with the penalties.

It would also make it easier to crack down on illegal listings, they say.

Airbnb ads would be required to include addresses under Rosenthal’s bill.

(New York City Mayor’s Office)

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