The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop #01414

Submission Number:
01414
Commenter:
Laura Elkins
State:
District of Columbia
Initiative Name:
The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop
To The Commissioners: I recently took ownership of my mother's home in Oxford, Mississippi. I listed the house on AirBnB. My first AirBnB rental was for commencement weekend 2015, which covered my mortgage for May. I already have several weekends in the fall lined up. Football season at the University should cover my mortgage for the year, as well as make a dent in household expenses. Although I also use word of mouth to advertise the house, since I grew up in Oxford, AirBnB, as well as the possibility of using other online platforms, is essential for my sharing the place with a broader, national and international audience to cover my costs. Also, platforms such as AirBnB offer guests the opportunity to see a place inside out -- more like a local. And AirBnB offers security in communicating with prospective guests and hosts and has established standards that all must agree to. My children introduced me to AirBnB. They have used the service with various houses and apartments they have lived in over the past several years. The rentals have helped them with rent, mortgage, and maintenance. I also use AirBnB -- in fact, I'm writing from one in London right now! AirBnB is the only accommodation near my daughter's place. She is just a few blocks away, so we are able to spend more time together. Platforms such as AirBnB fill a void where, as in Oxford, not enough hotel accommodations exist for big weekends at the University. These rentals are essential to supporting the local culture and economy, as well as supporting homeowners. Laura Elkins