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!


Next Step: City Council Meeting(s)

A presentation of the draft code was presented to the City Council for their consideration and potential adoption on December 1, 2020. The Council moved to table the item until the January 5, 2021 Council meeting. This meeting will allow for public comment and staff will present amendments to the proposed ordinance based on feedback from Council and members of the public. For more information on how to listen in or participate in City Council meetings, click here.





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!


Next Step: City Council Meeting(s)

A presentation of the draft code was presented to the City Council for their consideration and potential adoption on December 1, 2020. The Council moved to table the item until the January 5, 2021 Council meeting. This meeting will allow for public comment and staff will present amendments to the proposed ordinance based on feedback from Council and members of the public. For more information on how to listen in or participate in City Council meetings, click here.





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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If somebody purchases a home and decides to rent it out, that is completely in their right. There are no such things as "established neighborhoods" just neighborhoods. Just because you bought a home as a single family doesn't you and the rest of your NIMBY neighbors get to regulate what a property owner does with the homes. STRs are a viable way to establish flexible and cheaper alternatives to finding a place to stay. For a City that is taking major steps to become a destination and "festival town" we sure are making it hard to insure people have a place to stay.

TShelt 9 months ago

My primary concern is that in a market already short on housing, that converting a percentage of housing into STRs is only exacerbating the housing crisis, and needs to be limited as much as possible.

Kristifier Paxton 9 months ago

As a Realtor, I'm disturbed by the number of outside investors buying up property in Fayetteville to use as STR's. Out-of-state buyers are outbidding locals and it's heartbreaking to see homes that my clients got outbid on, homes they intended to use as their primary residence, pop up as over-priced rentals. As a Developer, it's so frustrating to work hard to deliver lower-priced homes only to have them bought up as vacation rentals instead of used as regular housing.
I would love to see us limit the number of short-term rentals that non-residents own a stake in to be limited to one and for residents, limit it to two. Fayetteville has become a great investment, but our stagnant wages and extremely housing supply are putting our residents at a significant disadvantage compared to outsiders. Until our housing supply catches up with demand and our wages rise out of the toilet, we must sharply limit short-term rentals.

sem 9 months ago

Fayetteville is quickly losing its sense of fellowship and community because of the constant drive for more temporary housing. Old homes are being demolished in favor of townhomes/apartments aimed at wealthier college students, and now much of the existing affordable homes are being sniped by landlords and utilized as temporary rentals. The effects are obvious when you see the difference between Fayetteville during the summer and fall. Businesses in our city struggle heavily during the summer.

Some of us who have been long term residents feel as if we don't matter to our local government anymore.

Very Concerned in NWA 10 months ago

- Requiring an "Agent" to have a physical residence in Fayetteville favors primarily one, maybe two, companies; one whose CEO is an advisor to the rule-making committee for STR regulations. This is a conflict of interest, stifles property management competition, raises rates, and puts the integrity of the committee into question. Though, if the true intent is to encourage owners to switch to long term rentals in my town, it is doing what it was intended. As I am already discovering and contemplating myself.
- From a practical point of view, if an Agent had a physical address in Rogers, AR, he or she would easily be 3 hours from all subject properties in every context. And in some cases might be closer than someone who lives in South Fay.
- One recommendation: Replace the residency requirement with a radius requirement, in miles, from the subject property as determined by the committee, that ensures a travel time no more than one hour, for example. Thus the latest amendment (which I applaud) to require a three hours show-time in an emergency would remain practicable.

Homeboy 10 months ago

I am the president of a POA in an rsf-2 neighborhood. We have a home in our neighborhood on that is listed on AirBnb. Residents of our neighborhood have voiced many, many complaints about the rental use of this house over the past two years it has been active on airbnb, and the complaints are becoming more and more frequent. The owners of the home live in NWA 3-4 months out of the year and out of the country the rest of the year. They use one set of their parents to "manage" the property when they are gone.

Complaints about this house have ranged from waking babies at 4 am with parties, dogs incessantly barking, recreational drug use, music noise, parking in grass and parking at the entrance of the neighborhood, which is a safety hazard. The house constantly has 6-7 cars parked in front and trash piled up on trash days. The owners have been alerted about each complaint but each renter brings new problems. The nature of this type of situation brings in people with no ownership over the area where they stay and they speed in the neighborhood putting our children at risk. The owners have no motivation to regulate the guests because that would bring them lower ratings and affect them financially.

I beg you that if you make this legal that you regulate it heavily with fines and loss of rental licenses if the city receives 3 complaints per year. This is a burden on our neighborhood and we can't really do much about it, other than constantly call the police and nag the owners.

The other issue i want to bring to your attention is distance compliance with sex offenders. Recently I walked outside to my kids playing on our play set and some air bnb guests in the neighboring yard were talking to them from their back porch. The guests were adult men. I think it was all friendly, but it made me slightly uncomfortable since we don’t know them.

When it comes to short term rentals, if there are background checks done they are only done on the registering guest and not all guests. And even still, not all registering guests are background checked. See Airbnb’s explanation of these risks.

https://www.airbnb.com/help/article/1308/does-airbnb-perform-background-checks-on-members

When any neighbor with a criminal background history like this moves into a neighborhood, everyone is notified. No one would know with an air bnb guest. If you make this legal you are ridding a barrier to protection against thai type of situation. Are you going to ban short term rentals within the same parameters that sex offenders would be banned? For instance, not within a certain distance of a school or playground?

Cgfayetteville 12 months ago

I see two different types of regulation in this, and I am in favor of one type and opposed to the other - the density cap regulation creates a lot of ambiguity and thus inequity about who will be allowed to utilize their property for rentals. If current units are grandfathered in - this unduly advantages those already owning short-term rentals, and some of the proposals also create some information asymmetry issues in determining whether a short-term rental already exists in an area or complex.

Reducing the income-generating potential of a neighbor's property by creating your own short-term rental is unfair, but it also seems likely that a neighbor might not know if they were out of compliance, especially if they did not use the same service to list their rental.

I do think regulations on the use and tax of the properties make a lot of sense - preventing event promotion in residential areas is sensible, making sure they chipping in on local taxes paid by hotels is fair... basically making sure this use of property does not adversely impact neighbors or shirk taxes levied on this type of use makes sense. Trying to cap the number of short-term rentals, to me, seems less much useful (unless you are already an existing short-term rental owner).

If there is a glut of these properties, rental prices will fall, and this will a) drive more rentals and more economic activity and b) drive some STR operators out of the market. This cap is counterproductive and creates unnecessary inequities in the housing market - a new homeowner in 5 years might not be afforded the same opportunity with their home that current owners enjoy if the cap is reached.

C.A. about 1 year ago

Concerned that this is a solution in search of a problem.
Seems like it could create more problems than it solves:
If this is complaint-driven, these regulations essentially put anxious, fearful, or jealous neighbors in charge of what a property owner does with their private property, and there are already plenty of anti-annoyance ordinances that they could avail themselves of.

Not Applicable about 1 year ago

Removed by moderator.

v tight gel about 1 year ago

I am not against regulation per se, but please consider a clause/exception that allows for more than 2 apartments/condos per building, at least for those who have already owned their condos for some time. I do not currently use my condo as a short-term rental, but purchased it several years ago after being told there was no regulation on short-term rentals for the building (it is near Dickson, so I believe it's in a "mixed use" zone), knowing that this could be an option for me at some point. I have noticed that several units have recently started being used as AirBNBs in the complex. If, as the current policy states, those unit owners are "grandfathered in" and allowed to continue on AirBNB, I would not even have a chance to apply for a license with the proposed condo/apartment density cap, as it is already met. It feels a bit fairer to allow a 6-month to 1-year grace period for all condo/homeowners to get the business license for their primary residence, particularly if they purchased their homes prior to the city's discussion of this issue. This should still help control the issue of people newly buying up several properties/condos just to use as short-term rentals (which could potentially reduce affordable housing options), but would accommodate people who purchased their home believing that they would be able to rent it out for a few weeks/weekends a year (e.g., when having to travel for work), which can really help one out financially when money is tight.

Wayne over 1 year ago

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JOhn Kamblugh over 1 year ago

We have one short term rental and are looking to build a couple more within city limits this year. I appreciate the thought and consideration that are going into these proposals. I believe the inspections and business licenses are long overdue. And, the idea of limiting the number of STRs will greatly increase the value and quality of each one that is licensed and keep the market from being oversaturated.

It would be helpful to know how these licenses will be handled once the 2% limit is reached. Will there be a waiting list? When someone sells a property that is a type-2 STR does that license pass on to the new owner? What is that current number and how close are we to the limit? Thanks for the time that has been put into this and we look forward to "legitimizing" the sector as a whole. I really believe it will greatly increase the quality and uniqueness that makes Fayetteville a great place to visit and live!

Karyn Siebert over 1 year ago

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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years 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 almost 2 years ago
Page last updated: 30 December 2020, 14:29