VISTRO-reported Airbnb listings are disappearing, but who’s behind their removal?

By Nick Valka

At least 19 illegal Vancouver Airbnb listings have been taken down after being reported by VISTRO, but the question remains as to who is actually removing them.

Vancouver’s Illegal Short Term Rental Operators, known as VISTRO[1] on Twitter, has reported 160 Airbnb listings to the City. But, while VISTRO is happy to hear some are being removed, they wonder who is taking these down.

“Is it Airbnb, the City of Vancouver or the hosts?” VISTRO asked.

“It’s fantastic if it is the City of Vancouver,” VISTRO added. “I’m happy to see that Kaye Krishna is finally doing what she’s paid $250,000 annually of our hard-earned tax dollars to do.”

Kaye Krishna is the general manager of Development, Buildings and Licensing for the City of Vancouver. She is on holiday until January 8 and could not be reached for comment.

Lindsey Scully, the press secretary for Airbnb, didn’t comment on whether or not Airbnb removed the 19 Vancouver listings and sent ThinkPol the following statement:

“Vancouver is home to many responsible Airbnb hosts who share their primary residences for a few nights each month in order to make ends meet. Airbnb is committed to working hand-in-hand with governments so that we can ensure a healthy home-sharing community. When hosts sign up on Airbnb, they must certify they will comply with local rules and regulations before listing their space and we also provide information about these local rules and regulations on our Responsible Hosting pages.”

VISTRO’s Twitter account originated just a few months ago and already has amassed over 1,100 followers. As its description states, VISTRO will continue to go after Airbnb even if the City of Vancouver won’t.

“I encourage more Vancouverites to report suspected Airbnb operations to the City,” VISTRO said. “But 19 out of 160 is nothing to write home about. That’s less than 10% compliance rate.”

ThinkPol needs your help. While other media outlets are content reproducing real estate industry press releases, we carry out painstaking analysis of real estate data, spending hours combing through the data. And the data isn’t free. Each title search alone costs us $12.

Please consider chipping in to help ThinkPol.

[Photo Credit: VISTRO]

References   [ + ]