A new statewide survey of Florida voters conducted by global research company, Morning Consult, shows Florida residents are concerned about the negative impacts of vacation rentals, like Airbnb, to housing and safety in their neighborhood.
The same vacation rental legislation that Florida legislators are considering now was enacted in Arizona in 2016. After the law was passed, commercial investors bought homes to convert to Airbnb’s, which led to increased housing costs, more crime and fewer available homes for local residents and workers.
By 60 percent margin, Floridians would feel less safe if neighbors’ home converted into short-term rental like Airbnb
When asked if their neighbors sold their home next door to an investor who turned the home into an Airbnb or vacation rental, 64 percent said they would feel less safe while only four percent said they would feel safer (60% margin).
This poll comes on the heels of a St. Pete Polls’ survey conducted last month that found that “75 percent of Floridians wanted the government closest to them regulating vacation rentals in their neighborhoods. Given the option, a supermajority prefers their local city or county commission call the shots.”
Mike Lux of AirbnbWATCH said this survey should be a wake-up call for Florida legislators considering to support legislation, H.B. 1011 and S.B. 1128, that would prohibit local governments from regulating short-term rentals in their neighborhoods.
84 percent concerned that Florida legislation would have same negative impact as it did in Arizona
“The influx of commercial investors buying up residential homes to convert into short-term rentals is fracturing communities in Florida, raising major safety concerns and depleting the affordability and availability of housing statewide,” stated Lux. “If Florida legislators remove local protections, the result could have a more devastating impact than what happened in Arizona as Florida will have no law on the books to stop commercial operators from taking over neighborhoods, replacing our neighbors with strangers and increasing the cost to rent or buy a home.”
By a nearly 3-to-1 margin, Florida voters believe having unregulated vacation rentals that change hands every night makes their neighborhoods less safe.
By more than a 35-point margin, Florida voters would be concerned about children playing outside if there was a short-term rental in their building or neighborhood where strangers were coming and going every night.
By a nearly 4-to-1 margin, Florida voters believe people in their neighborhood or building who rent a house, condo or apartment on a short-term basis on sites like Airbnb should have to register with the city for safety and security reasons.
Housing impacts/commercial investors
By a greater than 2-to-1 margin, Florida voters believe out-of-state real estate investors should not be allowed to buy an entire apartment building and multiple homes in a neighborhood in Florida, solely for the purpose of renting them out nightly year-round like a hotel.
By a greater than 3-to-1 margin, Florida voters believe when large real estate companies buy up multiple homes, condos or apartments to rent out as hotels, it drives up rent and housing costs, pushing out teachers, police officers, firefighters, and service workers.
Concerns about similar impacts of Arizona legislation
By a nearly 70-point margin, 84 percent of Florida voters are concerned what happened in Arizona would happen in Florida.
Morning Consult conducted an online poll of 700 registered voters living in Florida from February 13-15, 2020. The margin of error on these results is ±4.0%.