To the editor:
I read in the Warren Times-Gazette about the proposed short-term rental ordinance being considered by the Warren Town Council and think there are several items of concern that are …
To the editor:
I read in the Warren Times-Gazette about the proposed short-term rental ordinance being considered by the Warren Town Council and think there are several items of concern that are not addressed by the ordinance.
First, residential properties, purchased by individuals or companies, purely for use as commercial rental property should not be allowed in residentially-zoned neighborhoods and should be limited to commercial or mixed-use areas of town. It would be the same as someone building a short or long-stay motel in a residentially-zoned area.
Secondly, converting a building’s use from a residential residence to a commercial short-term rental property should also be required to conform to the same safety codes that a motel or other purely commercial rental properties must meet. An individual or corporation should not be able to circumvent building safety standards simply by changing its use from residential to commercial. The difference being someone staying in a short-term rental home, that they are not familiar with, could become disoriented and have difficulty getting out of the home when it is dark, the smoke alarm is sounding, and the building is filling with smoke. I think emergency lighting, fire extinguishers, and illuminated exit signs should be required at a minimum.
I am not concerned about someone renting out their home when they are on vacation for a week, month, or several months, as in the case of snowbirds heading south for the winter. I think it is better to have the home occupied in their absence rather than vacant.
The primary concern would be that the property be the owner’s primary residence for most of the year, providing stability in our residential neighborhoods by avoiding a transient population moving in and out every few weeks or months. This should not be taken that there is a problem with non-owner-occupied apartment buildings in town as those normally have stabile tenant populations.
William W. Christhilf