OttawaMatters: Ottawa welcomes Toronto short-term rental ruling

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By: Jason White

A provincial ruling on Toronto's regulations around short-term rentals is seen as a positive sign for similar rules currently proposed for Ottawa.

The Local Planning Appeal Tribunal ruled in favour of Toronto's plan to put stricter regulations on that city's short-term rental market, allowing the

rules to go ahead.

"It is certainly good news for us," said Somerset Councillor Catherine McKenney.

"Now that the appeal has been dismissed and Toronto's regulations on short-term rentals can go ahead, it would indicate that ours will, as well."

Ottawa's proposed rules are similar to Toronto's, in that they would licence short-term rentals such as listings on Airbnb. The proposed rules would also limit those short-term rentals to primary residences, to try to reduce the squeeze that short-term rentals have placed on the larger housing market. As investors have purchased condos and converted apartments to short-term rentals in the past few years, McKenney said that 750 downtown units had been lost to the short-term rental market.

"We cannot continue to lose that number of private rental units," said McKenney. "They are absolutely necessary for a healthy housing stock."

Ottawa city council will decide on the capital's proposed short-term rental rules later this month.

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