The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop
Hello, I've been an AirBnB host for about a year now and it's helped me to keep from losing my home following the U.S. banking crisis. After mortgage rates skyrocketed due to wall street greed and lack of government regulation on banks along with faulty practices like credit default swap and predatory lending, I first took in roommates to help pay my housing costs. This did not prove to be sustainable as I'm a single taxpayer, making ends meet by working over 60 hours a week, not having the resources to collect rent and security deposit via credit card on my own. With AirBnB, I'm able to participate in the sharing economy while paying my taxes for all rent collected because at year's end I'm served with a 1099. AirBnB is also a superior system to renting to friends or acquaintances because renters pay in advance, are covered by AirBnB's insurance policy and are well-screened in advance. The sharing economy (including Uber, Lyft, AirBnB and other sharing services) has made my personal finances more stable since the financial crisis of 2008. My guests, many from overseas, bring their money into my community, shopping at local grocery stores and attractions, further infusing the greater economy with cash. I'm a middle class taxpayer, who now that I've established myself as an excellent AirBnB host, is able to put more money into the economy by paying for laundry at a local service business. I'm also putting more money into improving and maintaining my home, which brings up property values in my neighborhood. As I experience the sharing economy, it begins to help evens out the great disparity between huge enterprises and the middle class working people of the world and I think that is what our society sore needs right now.