KSN Investigates: Short-term rentals

By Bret Buganski

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Short-term rentals in your home, like Airbnb or Vrbo, are becoming more common in Wichita. But fair warning! Online companies make it clear: it’s up to you to know the law when you’re renting out your place.

Knowing the rules

Chapter 5 of Wichita city code, under hotels and rooming houses, says, “a transient guest is any person who occupies a sleeping accommodation for a period of less than one week.”

That ordinance covers hotels and motels, but what about short-term rentals?

“We don’t, in our zoning code, have them specifically addressed as a short-term rental,” said Scott Knebel, City of Wichita Planning Manager. “In a residentially zoned area, our code doesn’t permit that presently, that’s correct,” as he referred back to the seven-day rule.

That means if you’re renting out your place on one of the short-term rental apps, and if you live in a residentially zoned area, and if your guests stay for less than a week, you’re violating Wichita city code and could be fined up $500.

One neighborhood’s experience

“We just needed to address it as a neighborhood,” said Patricia Hileman, the president of the College Hill Neighborhood Association. “It isn’t a problem until it becomes a problem.”

Read the full KSN article here.

Read more Horror Stories from Kansas!

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