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Airbnb decides the party's over and permanently bans parties

Posted at 6:12 PM, Jun 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-29 09:34:27-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — When you go on vacation, you expect it to be relaxing, right?

However, residents who stay home and have vacationers staying at short-term rentals in their neighborhood also expect to relax.

Herb Bradley lives on the Island in Corpus Christi and said ever since he moved out there about four years ago, people renting short-term rentals in his neighborhood have caused an excess amount of noise.

Bradley said he’s even heard gun fire coming from outside his home from the nearby short-term rentals.

“You go, 'is that a firecracker or what?'” Bradley said. “There’s been all kinds of stuff. We’ve had people complain about parties, call the police about parties, nothing’s being done.”

He said Airbnb’s decision to ban parties permanently — after temporarily banning them at the start of the pandemic — won’t help eliminate them.

“If we don’t have code enforcement now and they say they’re going to ban parties, I don’t know what that’s going to do," Bradley said. "People are going to blow by that. That’s not going to work.”

Bradley would like to see short-term rentals in residential areas go away altogether.

Steve Brown, who has lived on the Island for about two years, said parties are also a problem in his neighborhood.

He said even a small amount of people at Airbnbs near his house can make noise that travels to him.

He added parties are also a problem because they create traffic on his street.

With narrow streets in his neighborhood, Brown said the emergency service vehicles wouldn’t be able to maneuver their way through all the cars.

He thinks Airbnb’s decision isn’t a very realistic one.

“I think that’s a great idea, but my question to Airbnb is, how are you going to enforce that?” Brown said.

People who have rowdy neighbors can use Airbnb’s Neighborhood Support page to report loud noise or a party.

Violators who have parties can have their account suspended or can be removed from the platform altogether.

However, Marvin Jones, the board president of the Padre Island Property Owners Association, said their policy isn’t enough to stop parties altogether.

“I have no understanding of how they could possibly ban house parties. Once a place is rented and the short-term tenants move in, I doubt Airbnb is going to station a guard outside the house to determine whether they’re partying or not,” Jones said.

Elke Gonzalez, the president of the Corpus Christi Association of Realtors said Airbnb’s new policy is a win for neighborhoods.

She said their new rule will help reduce the amount of people who are against short-term rentals.

“There are bad neighbors everywhere, so the bottom line is there needs to be appropriate enforcement to make sure that those bad neighbors are addressed,” Gonzalez said.