Bad Airbnb guests face public shaming, five-year ban

Unruly Airbnb guests and “problematic hosts” will soon face a five-year ban for bad behaviour in NSW, with strict new laws kicking in ahead of the Christmas holidays.

A mandatory code of conduct for both guests and hosts of short-term rental properties will come into force on December 18 in a bid to put an end to rowdy parties and uncontactable hosts.

The new code will provide guidelines for both owners and their guests based on minimum standards of good behaviour, and formal avenues for complaints by neighbours.

It will also grant Fair Trading the power to ban people who break the code of conduct from booking platforms for five years and place their names on a public register.

Better Regulation Minister Kevin Anderson said short-term rentals were now a $30 billion-a-year industry, but there was no clear set of rules to protect hosts, guests and neighbours.

A new code of conduct will protect hosts from unruly guests with a two strike rule that will see them banned from short term rentals for five years. Pictured is an Airbnb after an out-of-control party. Picture: Nicole GarmstonSource:News Corp Australia

“The NSW Government is introducing these laws as part of our broad reform of the sector,” Mr Anderson said.

“Together, they will ensure the minority of participants who are giving the sector a bad name are removed and the short-term rental sector is improved for hosts, guests and communities.”

The register will work on a “two strikes and you’re out” policy, meaning anyone with two warnings in two years will be placed on the exclusion register.

Guests will be penalised through fines, exclusions or warnings for throwing loud parties or “unreasonably disrupting the neighbours”, damaging property or inviting over visitors who do any of the above.

Hosts or an authorised representative must be contactable by guests between 8am and 5pm every day, must make a copy of the code available to all guests and can be penalised for renting out their homes to guests on the exclusion register.

“We have all heard the horror stories of hosts doing the wrong thing or the house guests from hell behaving disgracefully in holiday rentals,” Mr Anderson said.

“If you are going to carry on like that in someone else’s house or neighbourhood, be warned – under these new rules you will be banned, and for a very long time.

“The standards are enforceable, with powers available to NSW Fair Trading Commissioner to take disciplinary action, including penalties and exclusion from the industry for repeat offenders.”

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