The digital revolution has proven to be a change agent for many industries and businesses that we're just now starting to see the impact of truly.

Just look at how apps like DoorDash have changed the restaurant industry, along with how Uber impacted taxis and other methods of transportation. These technological changes have even influenced the way we use public transactions in Western New York, as the NFTA has even started using its travel app.

Apps like Airbnb have some the same thing when it comes to rentals are handled and managed.

Before apps like Airbnb, the idea of renting someone's house for a day or weekend was unheard of. If you wanted a room like that, you were heading to a hotel or motel. Now, with apps like this, anyone can make their house or apartment available at any price.

While at first it seemed like this was an excellent idea for homeowners and renters to be able to figure out short-term flexible rental options, many cities are starting to see several unintended consequences.

Buffalo Bans New Short-Term Rentals in Certain Neighborhoods

It was just a few months ago when New York City made a pretty significant change to how rentals using services like Airbnb are handled, and now Buffalo is doing something similar.

According to a new law passed by the Buffalo Common Council, people seeking new permits to use their homes as short-term rentals have been suspended. The new permit moratorium will be in effect until at least the end of the year in three separate Council Districts: Fillmore, North, and South.

Many believe that the explosion of short-term rentals in neighborhoods like Allentown has directly contributed to Buffalo's rental costs increasing to record highs. Many people are just priced out of housing, which also contributes to Buffalo's homelessness problems.

What we’re seeing in urban neighborhoods and areas, like Allen, is it’s completely wiping out and exacerbating the affordable housing crisis where rental units, instead of going for 900/1,000 bucks, landlords can get $3,200 for a unit for only renting it out for a couple of days, which completely takes those rental units off the market... When you’re building a neighborhood, you need to have density and you need to have neighbors.
-Mitch Nowakowski, Fillmore District Common Council Member

Others feel that a residential neighborhood with too many short-term rentals takes away from the sense of community you have in the area.

While this rental ban is in effect, the City of Buffalo's Department of Permit and Inspection Services has been tasked with accounting for all current short-term rentals, along with those who have already applied, to ensure they follow all application rules and regulations.

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