By SUE SUCHYTA
HEIGHTS – City Councilmember Hassan Ahmad asked whether the city had a short-term rental ordinance, in light of legislation that recently passed the state House but failed in the Senate.
Ahmad called for a study session to address the possibility of regulation of local short-term rentals.
“This is going to be re-introduced to the House next year,” he said.
At issue is whether short-term rentals, such as Airbnb-type rentals are permissible in some residentially-zoned districts. If the state passes legislation, it would take much of the control out of the hands of municipalities.
Some people claim that short-term rentals can destroy the peace and quiet of a neighborhood, while others say it can help those on a fixed-income continue to afford their home.
At issue is also whether short-term rentals constitute a residential or a commercial use of a property.
With families visiting the nearby Henry Ford Museum seeking short-term rentals, there is a demand for the accommodation. However, those who rent the houses just to throw parties, which can become loud and disruptive, cause neighborhoods to get up in arms.
With Michigan being a popular tourist destination, some areas may find the short-term rentals more advantageous than disruptive.
However, a rental property can decrease the resale value of surrounding properties, which many see as a long-term investment for their retirement years.