Yokohama City is following in Shinjuku’s footsteps by proposing to introduce a ban on short-term Airbnb-style letting on weekdays. The plan would prohibit minpaku rentals from Mondays through Thursdays in areas zoned as Exclusively Low-Rise Residential. The plan will be open to public comment until December 19, with the draft to be submitted to the city council in February 2018.
Approximately 31% of Yokohama City’s area is designated as an Exclusively Low-Rise Residential Zone. The reasoning for the week-day ban is to ensure a peaceful environment for those who work during the week and do not want their neighborhood interrupted by travelers while trying to rest on weeknights.
In October, Tokyo’s Shinjuku ward announced similar plans that would ban minpaku rentals in exclusive residential zones on Mondays through Thursdays, limiting the maximum allowable nights per year to 156.
Kyoto City is considering an even tougher stance with a plan to limit minpaku rentals in exclusive residential zones to just the winter months of January and February and for a maximum of 60 nights over those two months.
From June 2018 the national government will be introducing legislation that will legalize Airbnb-type rentals, although a raft of obligations must be met. Hosts are required to obtain permission from their home owners association and register their property, while only being allowed to rent it out on a short-term basis for a maximum of 180 days per year. Fines for infringements will be increased to 1,000,000 Yen. Local governments have the power to impose even tighter rules, and many are currently in the process of drawing up additional regulations.
Yokohama City Homepage, November 20, 2017.
The Tokyo Shimbun, November 23, 2017.