Airbnb report shows Floridians making big bucks through the short-term lodging service

by | Jan 15, 2019

A new report released by Airbnb shows the short-term lodging service played host to 4.5 million visitors in Florida last year, generating $810 million to state residents who rent out rooms to guests using the Airbnb platform.

Airbnb says there are now 45,000 Floridians, including many seniors, who open up their homes and apartments to visitors and earn about $6,500 a year in supplemental income.

Miami-Dade is by far the largest market in Florida for Airbnb hosting guests, leading the state with 954,000 visitors staying in Airbnb accommodations and producing $204 million for hosts.

Osceola County is second with 640,000 visitor using the platform last year, generating $82.6 million in additional income for local homeowners. Broward County came in third with 406,000 Airbnb guests bringing in $80.3 million in supplemental revenue for residents who participate in the service.

“Yet, statewide data indicates that Airbnb and its host community appear to be complementing—rather than competing with—the Florida hotel industry,” Airbnb said in a written statement.  “This suggests that vacation rentals are opening up the state to a new slice of prospective tourists by catering to travelers less able to afford hotels, those who desire to stay in neighborhoods or cities that lack hotels, and families who prefer to be together under one roof.”

But, the lodging platform continues to battle local government regulations.

Earlier this month, Airbnb filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Miami against the City of Miami Beach. In the suit, Airbnb claims the city is unfairly regulating its short-term rental business. The city prohibits short-term rentals in all single-family homes and in most of the multifamily buildings.

Fines for violating the ordinance start at $20,000. Under the rules adopted by Miami Beach in September could fine a home-sharing platform $5,000 per violation of this rule.

Despite efforts efforts by local government to regulate the short-term lodging platform, the report released Tuesday shows nearly a million Floridians participate in Airbnb. The service says 932,000 state residents are either hosts with the service or are guests.


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