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Bill to protect Airbnb rentals passes House

Those who are considering purchasing an investment property in Missouri or who just want to earn some extra cash while away on weekends should keep an eye on a bill that passed in the Missouri House. According to reports from STLRealEstate.News, House lawmakers passed a bill that will protect rental websites like Airbnb and VRBO from local ordinances that would regulate how short-term rentals work. The bill, which passed with nearly two-thirds of the vote (90-49), prevents municipalities from creating regulations at the local level to fine residents who use these rental services to rent out their properties.

If the bill passes in the Senate and is signed into law by Gov. Greitens local governments would not lose all say over regulations for these websites. Certain regulations are still permitted, including registration guidelines and determining the minimum age of guests who are able to rent on their own.  

Blocking city regulation could mean big money for some hosts, as St. Louis Business Journal reported that Airbnb hosts in St. Louis made $6,300 a year on average. This is more than a host can make in most cities around the Midwest, and certain areas around St. Louis require hosts to secure a permit and a business license in order to rent on home-sharing websites, and these rules could be changed by the legislation. Condo associations and apartment buildings often ban their respective owners and renters from hosting on sites like Airbnb, which would not be affected if the bill were to become law.

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