REPORT: Airbnb price gouging could cost Boston Marathon runners and supporters thousands

Airbnb’s egregious price gouging continues – this time in Boston, Massachusetts around the annual Boston Marathon. At its worst, some properties are seeing a nearly 2,400 percent increase in rates – with the highest prices jumping nearly $2,000 extra per night!

 

Read our full report here – and the latest from the Boston Herald on the issue, below:

 

Report: Airbnb Rates Run Up

The Boston Herald

March 13, 2018

Boston, MA – A new report accuses Boston Airbnb hosts of jacking up prices by as much as $1,900 for people looking for a place to stay for the Boston Marathon, but the short-term rental website claims authors are biased and cherry-picked atypical listings.

The report by AirbnbWATCH claims an apartment in downtown Boston, which is normally rented for $77 per night, was listed at $2,000 per night for the weekend before the April 16 marathon.

A condominium that typically rented for $119 per night also was listed at $2,000 nightly for the same weekend, the group said, while a condo that ordinarily rented for $89 per night was listed at $1,200.

Airbnb’s in Boston Boston Marathon

Apr 15-16 Rate/Night

Off Event Rate/Night Airbnb’s in Boston Percent Increase
Blurbird’s Apartment 3 ** $937 $193 $744 485%
Victorian to Bauhaus, Penthouse of Hospitality by John $1,203 $125 $1,078 855%
Demetrios’ Condo 3 ** $1,200 $89 $1,111 1348%
Demetrios’ Condo 4 ** $2,000 $119 $1,881 1681%
Kara’s Apartment 22 ** $1,143 $216 $927 529%
3 Bdrm 2BA Apt Quiet Renovated Top Loc. Parking!by John** $1,800 $285 $1,515 531%
Mariana & Carlos’ Apartment ** $1,199 $170 $1,029 705%
Nicholas’ Apartment – Lrg 3 Bdrm Best Location Prvt. Patio Quiet Parking $2,000 $77 $1,923 2497%
Sonder’s Apartment 5 – Delightful 2BR in Downtown Crossing by Sonder ** $759 $229 $530 231%
3 BR|2.5 BA Renovated House Parking Top Location by John** $2,216 $475 $1,741 367%
*All rates and unit availabilities subject to change per host preference

**Denotes commercial operator with multiple other listings including:

Host Bluebird (100 listings), Host Demetrios (7 listings), Host Kara (100 listings), Host John (2 listings), Hosts Mariana & Carlos (14 listings), Host Sonder (100 listings)

“The facts in this report not only dismiss Airbnb’s false claims that their hosts don’t price gouge, but also showcase that their bad actors aren’t true home sharers; they are commercial Airbnb hosts who are running de facto hotels, disrupting communities, and taking housing stock off the market for long-term residents,” AirbnbWATCH spokeswoman Lauren Windsor wrote in an email.

City Councilor Lydia Edwards, who represents the North End, Charlestown and East Boston, said, “This kind of price-gouging is exactly why we want to regulate Airbnb and at the same time balance the interests of people who are just trying to pay their mortgage” by renting out a room or an apartment in their home for short amounts of time.

Read more from the Boston Herald