ENFORCEMENT CAN BE EFFECTIVE
“If anything, Monterey has been a local pioneer in the fight against short- term rentals. The city banned STRs in 1991. It was an issue 26 years ago, when city residents made their homes available to visitors here for golf tournaments, Laguna Seca races and other special events on the Monterey Peninsula. There was a lot of local talk about making a quick buck by renting their homes to big-money golf fans who would be showing up for the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach in 1992, and the city wanted to nip that notion in the bud. But the ordinance was only enforced if neighbors complained, according to Hans Uslar, assistant city manager.
About five years ago, the city council increased penalties from $100 to $1,000 a day after it became clear that some property owners simply factored city fines into the fees they charged visitors.
But when Airbnb got popular, residents and city o!cials started to notice many more out-of-towners creeping into neighbors’ homes. By unanimous vote, the Monterey City Council earlier this year adopted an ordinance that strengthened its original prohibition on STRs by imposing fines on property owners who advertise their homes or vacant rooms for short-term rental. And the council also authorized its sta” to enforce the ordinance vigorously.