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As online booking through sites such as Airbnb and HomeAway makes it easier to rent out a vacation home, Lake Tahoe finds itself facing an emotional fight over the use of its neighborhoods.
South Lake Tahoe’s beefed-up vacation home rental law was supposed to help prevent noise violations, obnoxious partying and bad actors from disturbing the city’s residential neighborhoods.
Months - Ordinance - Effect - Law - Tool
Three months since the updated ordinance went into effect, however, the law has primarily turned into a tool for doling out $2,000 parking tickets against non-disorderly visitors who rent houses through online sites such as Airbnb and Vacation Rentals by Owner, a Reno Gazette Journal investigation found.
Described as the strictest ordinance in the Lake Tahoe basin for vacation home rentals, South Lake Tahoe’s updated law added caps and steep fines in response to community concerns about the explosive growth seen in tourists using residential homes for lodging. One avid traveler from the Bay Area called the ordinance “absurd” and “arbitrary” after renting a home in the city earlier this year.
User - Online - Sites - Airbnb - VRBO
A regular user of online listing sites such as Airbnb and VRBO, Shirin Oloumi-Knerr says she enjoys going on ski weekends with her husband and three other couples they frequently travel with. Many times, this means making the drive up the twisting mountain roads of the Sierra Nevada and renting a house together at Lake Tahoe.
“We felt like staying in one house was the best way to cook meals together and hang out in larger common spaces that were still private,” Oloumi-Knerr said.
February - Oloumi-Knerr - Something - South - Lake
While visiting in February, however, Oloumi-Knerr noticed something about the South Lake Tahoe house they were staying at.
The property was peppered with warning signs threatening steep fines, not just for noise but also what she considers “harmless, arbitrary acts” such as parking on the street and hot tub use. In addition to...
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