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People discuss possible changes to Little Rock's short-term rental regulations

A proposed ordinance in Little Rock would increase the license and inspection fees for short-term rental owners throughout the city.

LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Airbnbs and VRBOs— many have been turning to these rental options over hotels. Though cities like Little Rock are hoping to crack down on these types of properties for the sake of safety.

On Monday night, the City of Little Rock hosted a public meeting for a proposed ordinance on short-term rentals.

"The biggest issue I can see from Airbnbs [is] that I feel like you need to tackle is negligent homeowners," said one property owner.

"Airbnb owners want clarity to move forward. Residents want clarity to know that if we bought something in a zoned residential area it means zoned residential," said a Little Rock resident.

The proposed ordinance would increase license and inspection fees.

Some of the requirements would include:

  • Proof of homeowner’s fire, hazard, and liability insurance
  • Installment smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Accessibility of fire extinguishers
  • Annual inspection fee and renewal of business license

The annual inspection fee and renewal of the license will cost between $100 to $500, but the city plans to offer a grace period for existing properties that need to get up to these standards. 

Though the conversation at the meeting went beyond the inspection fees, as several people spoke about whether or not short-term rentals were affecting the quality of life in Little Rock.

"Of course the first weekend, there was a party and there was a problem with too much noise," said a Little Rock homeowner.

"It's not always a money thing. We need quiet. We need peacefulness," said another person living in the city.

The ordinance is on Tuesday's board of director agenda.

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