Michael F. Vaillancourt

South Portland Speaks: Uphold Restrictions on Short-Term Rentals


By a vote of 6,375 to 5,378 South Portland will regulate short-term rentals.  Since the emergence of companies like Airbnb and HomeAway, cities have struggled to find a balance between maintaining the integrity of residential neighborhoods and satisfying a new industry.

South Portland has been at the forefront of this debate in Maine as it continues to grow in popularity due to its many attractions and proximity to downtown Portland.  The Press Herald reported that there were 282 short-term rentals in South Portland as of November 2017.  

Now that the dust has settled, what will be the law after January 1, 2019?

  1. "Unhosted Short-Term Rentals of 30 Days or less in residential zones" are banned.
    1. "Unhosted"= Owner Not on Premises During Stay
  2. All short-term rental units must be inspected, licensed and insured by South Portland.
  3. City officials with use new technology to monitor for illegal short-term rentals.

What will not be impacted?

  1. Unhosted Short-Term Rentals in Commercial or Mixed-Use Zones.

Details still need to be worked out.  For instance, "Hosted" short-term rentals will be allowed in residential zoning areas under certain conditions.  The City Clerk’s office will release information about registration as it becomes available and recommends checking their website for new updates.

The attorneys at Ainsworth, Thelin and Raftice handle all types of real estate matters.  Every case is fact dependent and even the smallest detail can impact how the law will apply to you or your building.

The information in this blog is not designed to be specific legal advice.  If you have a question or wish to set up a consultation, please click below or call us today.

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