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On Second Try, Bill Limiting Anti-Airbnb Ordinances Meeting Little Opposition

House passes bill 74-19; legislation would guarantee your right to do what you want in own home

(INDIANAPOLIS) - You'd still be able to rent out your home as an Airbnb under a bill passed by the House.

Last year, an Airbnb bill failed by one vote,  but this year's revised version passed 74-19. If it's your own house you're renting out, the only restriction cities can place on you is to charge you $150 for a permit. The bill would allow cities to require a zoning variance if you try to rent out a property you own but don't live in.

House Majority Leader Matthew Lehman (R-Berne) says there's opposition to local governments telling you what you can do with or in your own home. But he acknowledges cities' argument that Airbnb amounts to an unregulated small business makes more sense when it's a property other than the one you live in.

Cities and counties could still enforce things like fire violations, safety violations and excessive noise.

Lehman says 4,000 Hoosiers rent out their homes through Airbnb, collecting an average of $2,100 a year. 

The bill would allow references already on the books at the start of the year to remain unaffected. That rules out Carmel, which passed an Airbnb ordinance January 8. Carmel Rep. Jerry Torr says he hopes the Senate will extend the grace period to let the city's ordinance stand.

The Senate will consider the bill next month.

(Photo: Andrey Popov/Thinkstock)

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