What is the intent of the short-term rental regulations project?

    To develop recommendations for short-term rental accommodations regulations that support:

    • The health and safety of Winnipeg residents and renters of short-term rentals
    • Diverse and equitable accommodation options in Winnipeg, contributing to tourism, economic development, and showcasing Winnipeg neighborhoods, including downtown
    • The accountability of hosts and operators to neighbourhood livability standards and respond to concerns about noise, property damage, and illegal activities

    What are 'short-term rentals'?

    Short-term rentals are temporary accommodations (less than 30 consecutive days) in a dwelling (house, condominium, apartment, etc.), provided by a property owner or principal tenant in exchange for payment. Common short-term rental platforms include Airbnb, VRBO, and HomeAway.

    What did the City learn from Winnipeg residents through the March 2022 Omnibus survey relating to concerns and positive effects about short-term rentals?

    Concerns included:

    • Impacts on housing market and rental housing
    • noise
    • loss of sense of community
    • property maintenance and damage
    • neighbourhood safety
    • illegal activity

    Positive impacts included:

    • flexibility regarding type of accommodation
    • contribution to tourism industry
    • income for hosts
    • supports local economy
    • contributes to sense of community
    • increased business for local amenities

    What kinds of regulations will the City be considering?

    We will be considering a variety of regulatory tools, including: 

    • Taxation
    • Licences
    • Land use and zoning
    • Enforcement

    Will the City be banning short-term rentals in Winnipeg?

    The Public Service is developing recommendations for Council’s consideration. Research indicates that understanding the dynamics of short-term rentals within our community and addressing issues as simply and directly as possible using regulatory tools is the best solution.

    What will licensing look like?

    We are just beginning to explore what licensing may look like. Public and stakeholder engagement will help inform our options and subsequent recommendations for Council’s consideration, in addition to our review of models from other municipalities, including Toronto. A framework may include things like:

    • An application process
    • Licensing fee
    • Maximum number of days a short-term rental may be rented per year
    • Limits on the number of licenses an individual may obtain
    • Fire and safety requirement
    • Liability insurance

    How will you enforce any licensing requirement?

    Enforcement is key to the success of any regulations. We will be considering an enforcement program as we develop and assess regulatory options. Enforcement will be managed on a complaint basis and may include a fine or license suspensions.

    How will the City pay for enforcement?

    The cost of an enforcement program will be considered as we develop and assess options.

    Will the City include a primary residence requirement in your regulations?

    It is too soon to say what our recommendations will be. We first need to engage with residents and stakeholders, and then develop a framework that best responds to the issues in the community. Preliminary research indicates that other cities have incorporated a primary residency requirement in their regulations. We will consider this and other components when putting forward a recommended licensing framework for Council’s consideration.

    How will other accommodations be impacted by these regulations, such as rentals longer than 30 days?

    The regulations being explored are specific to rentals that are less than 30 days within a dwelling, in either all or part of a unit. Any accommodations that are rented for longer than 30 consecutive days will not be included in this regulation.

    For the time being, will I still be allowed to use my home/property as a short-term rental?

    There will be no changes to existing short-term rental practices until the Public Service recommends options and reports back to City Council. Changes would be implemented only after Council’s consideration and direction.

    Will City bylaws be changing?

    Bylaw changes may be required in the future. No changes will be enacted until after the Public Service submits a report that includes specific regulatory recommendations for Council’s consideration in fall 2022.

    Does the Zoning By-law prohibit short-term rentals? Can the City not enforce these now?

    The Zoning By-law currently only defines and regulates Bed & Breakfasts. As the specific use of short-term rentals is not currently defined in the bylaw, these types of accommodations cannot be regulated.

    What is an accommodation tax?

    Please see the following website for more information: https://assessment.winnipeg.ca/asmttax/english/other_taxes/accommodation.stm

    What is the City doing to address the safety concerns identified by residents and neighbours of short-term rentals?

    We have connected with the Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) to better understand the nature and extent of their experience and concerns with short-term rentals. We will work closely with the WPS as a potential licensing and enforcement framework is developed.  We will also be working with the WPS to develop information on Sex Trafficking and Human Trafficking for owners of short-term rentals, as directed by Standing Policy Committee on Property and Development, Heritage and Downtown Development.

    How do short-term rentals impact the housing market and rental housing, including housing affordability and availability?

    Research indicates this has been a concern in other jurisdictions (such as Toronto). We are exploring how best to understand and approach this issue for Winnipeg.

    What are the next steps?

    Stakeholders will have an opportunity to weigh in on short-term rentals in June 2022. Feedback received will help us to better understand the nature and extent of short-term rental accommodations benefits and constraints so that the regulations we develop will address the issues. We will provide a report back to Council with recommendations on regulations in Fall 2022 for its consideration.