Letter to the Editor: D.C. City Council Must Regulate Commercial Operators Exploiting Airbnb

The Washington Informer
November 12, 2017


To the editor,

It’s time for DC City Council to regulate these commercial operators exploiting Airbnb. 

Airbnb began as a way for people to garner extra income by renting out their home when they take a family vacation or go out of town on business. However, illegal hotel operators have bastardized the system by buying entire apartment complexes and renting them through Airbnb as if they are hotel suites.

This savvy operation to operate hotels without paying taxes sucks up already limited housing options in D.C., raising rent costs for single mothers already struggling to get by. In 2016, for example, the median rent grew by nearly 15 percent in Airbnb’s top 20 D.C. neighborhoods.

It is high-time that D.C. City Council members stand up for their constituents and address these illegal hotels. Life for a single mother is difficult enough, and housing in The District is already plenty expensive. The absolute last thing we need is to see rent increases so hedge funds can get richer.


Sharon Farmer
D.C. Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner