Austria's Innsbruck cracks down on illegal Airbnb offers

The Local Austria
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Austria's Innsbruck cracks down on illegal Airbnb offers
Innsbruck has declared 'housing emergency' (Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash)

The Tyrolean capital Innsbruck has so far tracked down 111 suspected cases of illicit short-term rentals since it launched its Airbnb Taskforce in March 2022.

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Innsbruck this Wednesday has extended the contract for IT support for its Airbnb Taskforce, which combs short-term rental websites looking for illegal offers in the busy Tyrolean capital, Austrian media has reported.

The authorities use algorithms to assign suspicious offers to corresponding addresses, according to ORF. 

The city of Innsbruck has received about 300 data sets from the IT company since the start of cooperation between the two parties. In 23 cases, the municipal department for the building and housing register conducted further investigations. The remaining suspicious cases were forwarded to other municipal offices for prosecution of possible violations of the law. Around 20 previously illegal Airbnb rentals have now been completely stopped in Innsbruck.

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: What are Austria’s rules for Airbnb rentals?

Illegal rentals are subject to severe fines, for example, for registration law violations or unauthorised commercial activity. As a rule, tourist rentals are not permitted in buildings that are specifically intended for residential purposes.


What does this mean for Airbnb hosts in Innsbruck?

Hosts renting out their properties on Airbnb in Innsbruck must comply with city regulations. This means they must register their rental with the city and pay the appropriate taxes. They must also ensure that their rental does not violate other laws, such as the building code or the noise ordinance.

Hosts who violate the city's regulations may be subject to fines. In some cases, they may even be forced to stop renting out their property altogether.

READ ALSO: Austria’s City of Innsbruck announces rental control system

The city of Innsbruck has been cracking down on illegal flat rentals, especially as the city and region suffer from housing shortages and higher rents. Hosts can contact the city's tourist office for more information on how to rent their apartments legally. 


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