The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop #01122

Submission Number:
01122
Commenter:
Michele Marden
State:
Florida
Initiative Name:
The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop
I LOVE AirBnB ! When my husband and I were having financial problems, renting our house out every once in a while helped us make ends meet. The paid the taxes on that income gratefully, as I was so happy (and relieved) to have had the income. Without AirBnB there's a chance we could have lost the house altogether. Now that we're doing better, the added income has become discretionary and we use it to go to the movies, eat out, and travel. My sister rents her vacation home on AirBnB. The rental fees she derives pay the house's property taxes and home owners association dues. Other friends do the same, using the income for a variety of reasons, from paying the light bill, to buying new vehicles or taking trips, to buying stocks or starting savings accounts. I think it's appalling that cities around the country try to limit home owners renting out their places. Our homes are assets, and like all assets, should be put to work generating the best possible returns. AirBnB helps make that happen. As a traveler, I adore staying in AirBnB properties. I've met hosts who remain friends and having an apartment in another city gives you a unique perspective on the town. I'm no longer a tourist, and unlike a tourist (and because I have a kitchen in the rental) I shop at local grocery stores, bakeries, etc. I explore the neighborhood, rather than just going from hotel to tourist attraction and back, and as often as not, my souveniers come from those neighborhood shops and boutiques, rather than the big gift shops attached to the museums and tourist attractions. As an AirBnB renter, my tourist dollars get spread out into the community more. Recently, I've been working with a charity and have reached out to AirBnB hosts across the US to donate accommodations for one or two nights. The response has been overwhelming positive. Does hosting on AirBnB make people nicer ?? :-)