Short-Term Rentals: Public Comment

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A short-term rental is the leasing out of a furnished residential dwelling on a short-term basis, generally less than 30 days.

It is estimated that there are approximately 500-600 short-term rental units in Fayetteville. However, Fayetteville’s codes do not have specific rules or allowances for short term rentals. In July 2019 the City Council adopted a resolution directing staff to study and develop an ordinance for short-term rentals for their consideration.

The City of Fayetteville is inviting City residents to provide feedback, ask questions, and help us identify issues around this topic.

Please use the Guestbook feature below to post your comments, or ask a question via the Q&A tab. We appreciate your input!


Step 1. Focus Group Meeting 1

As the first step in studying short-term rentals, the City hosted a focus group on August 19, 2019 to discuss the issue. The focus group represented various perspectives including neighborhood representatives and concerned citizens, rental owners and managers, and hotel owners. The group was guided by a professional facilitator to identify key issues and recommendations in moving forward with local rules for short-term rentals. View the first Focus Group Notes here. (pdf)

Step 2. Public Input Meeting

The City hosted a public input meeting about short-term rentals on September 30, 2019. Click here to view the notes from the public input meeting. (pdf)

Step 3. Focus Group Meeting 2

On January 15, 2020, the City hosted a second focus group meeting to review and comment on the first draft code for short-term rentals. Click here to view the notes from the second focus group meeting. (pdf)

Step 4. Planning Commission Meeting(s)

The draft code for short-term rentals will be discussed at the Planning Commission meeting on February 10, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. in Room 219 of City Hall

Step 5. City Council Meeting(s)

After the Planning Commission meeting, the final step will be presentation of the draft code to the City Council for their consideration and potential adoption.




A short-term rental is the leasing out of a furnished residential dwelling on a short-term basis, generally less than 30 days.

It is estimated that there are approximately 500-600 short-term rental units in Fayetteville. However, Fayetteville’s codes do not have specific rules or allowances for short term rentals. In July 2019 the City Council adopted a resolution directing staff to study and develop an ordinance for short-term rentals for their consideration.

The City of Fayetteville is inviting City residents to provide feedback, ask questions, and help us identify issues around this topic.

Please use the Guestbook feature below to post your comments, or ask a question via the Q&A tab. We appreciate your input!


Step 1. Focus Group Meeting 1

As the first step in studying short-term rentals, the City hosted a focus group on August 19, 2019 to discuss the issue. The focus group represented various perspectives including neighborhood representatives and concerned citizens, rental owners and managers, and hotel owners. The group was guided by a professional facilitator to identify key issues and recommendations in moving forward with local rules for short-term rentals. View the first Focus Group Notes here. (pdf)

Step 2. Public Input Meeting

The City hosted a public input meeting about short-term rentals on September 30, 2019. Click here to view the notes from the public input meeting. (pdf)

Step 3. Focus Group Meeting 2

On January 15, 2020, the City hosted a second focus group meeting to review and comment on the first draft code for short-term rentals. Click here to view the notes from the second focus group meeting. (pdf)

Step 4. Planning Commission Meeting(s)

The draft code for short-term rentals will be discussed at the Planning Commission meeting on February 10, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. in Room 219 of City Hall

Step 5. City Council Meeting(s)

After the Planning Commission meeting, the final step will be presentation of the draft code to the City Council for their consideration and potential adoption.




Guest Book

Please share with us your comments and suggestions regarding the potential regulation of short-term rentals within the City of Fayetteville. What are your concerns? What do you think are the key issues? 
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I agree with Keith, It can hurt the community with absent landlords, with no kind of regulation. I have also had properties like this in my community, I currently own a Landscaping Service so I would take care of the yards of the absent landlords for the sake of my community.

lawn1234 3 months ago

There are several houses in our neighborhood in south Fayetteville that are becoming full-time short term rental properties. So far, no real problems. However, they completely take away the possibility of building community and sense of neighborhood. One block is completely empty except for one house that is occupied other than on game days and rental times. The negatives that I was mostly worried about (partying, wildness like is occurring with this in Austin TX or Nashville TN with absent landlords who provide no regulation, etc..) so far hasn't come to pass, but it does completely take away the possibility of positives - neighbors and connection and support of local businesses and heck, even landscaping the yard to make our neighborhood prettier. So, for me that is a major negative.

Keith 3 months ago

I was planning on living in my condo, which is off Garland ave in a building with 6 units, and “airbnb-ing” it on the weekends when I am not there on the weekends, this was my plan for the last half of 2020 and moving forward. I haven’t “airbnb-ed” yet so I’m not a current short term property yet. Is there anything I can do to keep this as my plan for the future?.

Jonathan H 3 months ago

In my humble opinion, I think requiring a home owner to waive his 4th amendments rights and be subjected to inspection by government agents (code inspectors) in order to be extended the right, to rent out a room in their own house, by non-elected city planners is outrageous. The public does not need the government to protect them from folks wanting to rent out a room. Wake up folks. This permitting and licensing regime by unelected "bureau-hacks" is an attack on your personal rights and freedom.

Corbitt Law 4 months ago

Our short term renters are amazingly considerate of our shared driveway with our neighbor. Sadly, our neighbor has made it clear she wants to buy our house and apparently made a quite a stir at the last planning meeting. Ironically she made it clear to my wife and I that she wants to buy it to rent out for herself. Incredibly her house has an ADU that transients stay in constantly. Lesson: Beware of cutthroats influencing short term rental policy for personal gain. Sadly my wife and I want to feel welcome in our own neighborhood when we move into our house in a few years when I retire. I still can't believe people in my hometown are like this. Is this what's moved in while I was gone?

Hometown Boy 4 months ago

Retraction from Gary Karnes regarding yesterday's comment, replacing it in total with the following:My comments yesterday came from the emotion of the moment after reading Sunday's article in the DemGaz. After doing a little research and asking questions, I have learned that a subdivison's protective covenants overrule what the city might put on the books, but of course, you might have to end up in court to enforce your covenants. This was explained to me by our City Planning Director. I live in a neighborhood that is zoned RMF-24 which is one of the higher density zoning districts. The units are townhomes, in duplex form, and thus attached. I feel confident that strangers coming & going would be quite noticeable and I think this would be the case in many of the higher density multi-family zoning districts. On the other hand, a friend who lives in low density zoning district, explained to me yesterday, that there is a vacation rental down the street from him and that he has no issue with it. Our covenants state, "no commercial activities" and hopefully, we can prevent vacation rentals if it becomes an issue in our neighborhood. It seems to me, that when homeowners and landlords have the right to rent their properties on a daily basis and receive dollars in return, and, when the city requires a business permit to operate, it is hard to think of the property as anything but commercial. If residential & multi-family zoning is approved for VRs, then I hope the affected neighborhoods have covenants they can lean on should VRs become an issue in their neighborhoods. I'm sure there has been a much thought and work on this issue and hopefully it will be resolved in an just manner.

Gary Karnes 4 months ago

Not happy about any short term rentals in single-family zoning. Short terms rentals are only allowed now in commercial & mixed-use zoning as it should be. Enforce the code, please . . . don't change the code to placate up to 500 owners who are breaking the law currently. We have a whole lot more homeowners in Fayetteville than those 500. "Business permits" really? in single-family neighborhoods? Sounds very commercial to me. I hope the Planning Commission will put a halt to this proposal and ask the require the city to start enforcing what is already on the books. I personally live in a neighborhood where the homes are fairly close together. If a residence across the street operates as a motel or hotel with strange people coming and going daily, it simply violates our rights as property owners who thought they were buying a home in a strictly residential neighborhood. I hope that our covenants will prevail in stating "no commercial activity" but from what I am reading it doesn't sound like it. If this passes, hopefully there will be a coalition engaged to take the City to court over what I think many will consider to be an unjust decision. As stated in the paper, "The City Council authorized planners last year to look into regulation "after staff realized short-term rentals are technically against city code." Sounds like somebody dropped the ball on code enforcement.

Gary Karnes 4 months ago

I purchased a primary residence in the city and use it for Airbnb to help cover the cost of my mortgage when I travel for the national guard and my primary employer. I purposefully chose and purchased the house to be both appealing to myself and to any potential guests. I hire a cleaner and manager on an as-needed basis and contribute to our local economy with their employment. I would not have been able to buy a large home in the primary location without the short-term rental income to help cover the mortgage. I strive to maintain my Superhost status on Airbnb and provide excellent service to my guests, not just the basic safety items that are required. I don't understand why we would over-regulate people's ability to make some side income and pass it to those who have the time, money, and team to scale their operations throughout the city, like the investors and hospitality management groups of hotels. Don't turn our city into a hotel operation, let homeowners earn some income from their investments.

Citizen 4 months ago

If the requirement for the agent is to be available to be on-site within an hour, why require that they have a permanent address within the City of Fayetteville? They can easily get there in half that time from as far away as Bella Vista.The limitation of short-term rental licenses to a maximum of two dwelling units in any multifamily building, regardless of overall total units in the multifamily building, is rather obnoxious and unfair to property owners. This limit should be removed.The draft code makes lots of reference to "owner". How does this play out for individuals that rent or lease the property? I'm with most of the other residents that have already commented - this seems like a lot of over-regulation from a city that should be focusing on more important things like maintaining the terrible roads or cleaning up illicit drug use by our permanent resident neighbors rather than inventing problems from these short-term rental people.

Ryan 4 months ago

I do not have any concerns about short term rentals. This is a service I have used and would rather stay in a home like setting vs a hotel. Also provides additional income for those who want to stay in the home when the home is larger than needed. I have had long term renters in the past and do not have as much control over as I do with short term rentals.

Karen 4 months ago

The biggest problems with rentals are not short term rentals. People using companies such as Airbnb generally have cleaner, well regulated rentals through that company already and any further city interference would discourage development in the city. Let short term renters have their freedom. Taxes collected on those properties are enough without adding any extra burden through increased regulation.

No more por favor 7 months ago

You have enough on your plate to take care of. Let the people of the city live their lives without constant government supervision. Concentrate on what your real duties are. Maintaining the streets in a fashion that does not require having pot holes the size of basketballs would be one area I would suggest.

JR 7 months ago

I don't think there should be very strict ordinances for this. If someone owns property they should be able to use it however they see fit within reason. Short term rentals are great and should not be limited. It's nice as someone who as used many of them to have options and with the university and other cultural draws to the area, short terms rentals are great especially due to the lack of hotels in the area.

Llcornelsen 7 months ago

A property owner should be able to use their property as they see fit without interference from the government. Through property taxes, they pay for the infrastructure and services the City supplies. The short-term "tenants" most likely will spend money within Fayetteville, thus yielding additional tax income to the City. Furthermore, short-term rentals supply the property owners, who are residents and citizens of Fayetteville, additional income. If spent within the City, more sales tax income is recognized by Fayetteville. This additional income to the City can be spent on roads, schools, police, fire, water, trash, and even parks. Therefore, further regulation of STRs by the City would result in loss of income to two parties: the property owner and the City of Fayetteville. Nobody wins.

JFF 7 months ago

Look at your past ordinances and revise them to help ease our housing crunch. Short term rentals are not a problem. Short term rentals fit a very specific need in a college town anyway, let good things happen. More importantly it is not your business who someone invites into their home or what their arrangement is. We already have ordinances regarding how many unrelated people can live in a single family home at once, renters or owners... doesn't matter, this is covered. A little less of an authoritarian approach from the city would be appreciated.

MLF 7 months ago

Leave people alone. Don’t hurt people and prevent them from making additional income to support themselves and their families. Don’t hurt people. Don’t take their stuff. Don’t restrict a person’s liberty and personal property rights.

FayettevilleLibertyResident 7 months ago

Turning Homeowners into Outlaws: How Anti-Home-Sharing Regulations Chip Away at the Foundation of an American Dream Christina SandefurGoldwater InstituteAbstract“Home-sharing” may sound like a modern invention, part of the cutting-edge, high-tech “sharing economy.” In fact, home-sharing is a centuries-old American tradition. For generations, people have let visitors stay in their homes, rather than in hotels, sometimes in exchange for money or for doing chores. The only difference now is that the practice has become more efficient: the internet has enabled homeowners and travelers to connect better than ever before, and online home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Homeaway now help millions of homeowners rent rooms or houses to help pay their bills. Most importantly, home-sharing represents an important new way for property owners to exercise their basic right to choose whether to let someone stay in their home — a right the Supreme Court has called “one of the most essential sticks in the bundle of rights that are commonly characterized as property.” Yet cities nationwide have responded to innovations in home-sharing not by welcoming this economic opportunity or respecting the rights of property owners, but by imposing draconian new rules that deprive Americans of some of their most basic constitutional rights. From New York City to Santa Monica, places with bustling tourism economies are rushing to restrict homeowners from offering rooms in their homes to travelers. These regulations hurt communities and punish the responsible majority of property owners for the potential wrongs of a few. Worse, these laws violate fundamental constitutional protections, impose arbitrary searches on homeowners, discriminate against non-residents, and subject them to extreme punishment without fair warning or clear guidelines. This article surveys some of the most egregious home-sharing restrictions and some of the ways they violate critical constitutional rights. First, this article explains that the recent rash of home-sharing restrictions results from the fact that, with few exceptions, courts have permitted government to deprive owners of their right to use property so long as government technically does not take title to the land. Next, the article explores how home-sharing restrictions, while aimed at the use of property, have actually deprived Americans of other constitutional rights, including privacy. The article then identifies and addresses some of the primary arguments in favor of home-sharing restrictions and explains why those arguments do not justify stifling property rights and other freedoms. Finally, the article proposes alternatives to outright bans, and ways government can regulate home-sharing to address legitimate concerns without violating constitutional rights

HomeOwner/Criminal 8 months ago

I believe there should be a limit to the number of Airbnb units per residential lot in single family zoned areas. I know an individual who will soon have 5 units in the historic district in association with the residential lot where they live. This seems to be too many to me. They are not being built as an improvement to the community as a whole. Most individuals that build or renovate their homes in a historic district have a very public view about what they are doing; in other words they care how their single family home renovations fit into the urban historic landscape. So many Airbnbs clearly are for one and one thing only - to make money. Are the owners building quality construction that blends in or compliments the character of other buildings in the historic district? All construction of houses to be used for Airbnbs no matter what type of residential community they are built in should be subject to some sort of construction quality control, or at least be built to the same standards and appearance as the homes in the area. If people living in urban single family homes think they should have the total freedom to do as they wish with their property they should be required to read Garrett Hardin's, "Tragedy of the Commons."

GGH 8 months ago

I understand that property owners believe it is their right to do with there homes as they wish. However, if Airbnb and other short-term rentals take place within a neighborhood, that means that other citizens of the city are affected by a given property owner's actions as well as those of their renters. Therefore, I think it's imperative for the city to gather as much information as possible about issues that are cropping up in a cities with such rentals. And I believe that there should be recourse for neighbors around such a short term rental when problems arise.

C. L. 8 months ago

There should be an ordinance that short term rentals be required to follow the POA rules or covenants of the neighborhood the property is located in (if any) and occupancy should be based on the same rule as long-term rentals.I've read through all the literature provided and must say that I disagree with most of it. It seems to me that most of this is theoretical rather than based on actual statistics. I went to the Air BNB site and reviewed the listings. There are VERY FEW homes listed there that could be considered low cost housing for students or lower income families. Most are expensive homes/condos in higher end/ trendy locations or they are private rooms or studios in a homeowner's personal residence. "It just takes one disaster"....this is true of anything and is not a sensible argument. The U of A paper states there have only been 6 short term rental complaints in 3 years. With the AirBNB report of 533 listings in Fayetteville and "hundreds" more according to the City's report - I conclude this is an excellent statistic. There is no ordinance or regulation that could prevent just one disaster from occurring.It surprises me that concern over parking is being raised. It surprises me that concern over the aesthetic of the properties is being raised. The City has TOTALLY ignored parking issues - from allowing multiple apartment/townhouse new construction to congest our beautiful streets by allowing street parking to the total disregard of our own high school students lack of parking at their own school. I don't believe this is an issue for short term rentals. There are greater parking issues in our town.Students don't have a shortage of housing in Fayetteville. Enrollment is down at the U of A so I don't see a shortage in the near future either.Most new home construction in Fayetteville right now cannot be considered affordable for low income families. I look at the low income housing areas in Fayetteville and the City is allowing new construction to purchase and tear down affordable housing and build housing that is absolutely NOT affordable for people in these areas. I don't believe you can hold short term rental owners to this issue when you don't hold developers to this issue.I ask the City Planner, Mayor and City Council to try and be more sensible dealing with this ordinance than it has been with ordinances and regulations in the recent past.

Ali 8 months ago