As the short-term rental market has boomed in recent years, rules and regulations to oversee the industry have not necessarily kept up. The Breckenridge Town Council recently passed new rules to try to balance the interests of rental owners with the concerns of neighbors who live near these properties.
The Town of Breckenridge approved a new fee structure for licensing short-term rentals (an annual fee of $25 – $150 based on the number of bedrooms) and a new process for inspections (the town will try to reach owners before inspections unless it’s an emergency). However, a new 24-hotline to report complaints is drawing the most attention from owners.
Who You Gonna Call?
When a complaint is called in, the hotline will contact the “designated agent” listed on the rental license, who will have one hour to resolve the problem. The agent doesn’t need to be the owner or a property management company – a friend, family member or neighbor can serve as an agent, but must be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to respond to complaints.
Mixed Reaction to the New Rules
The new rules are intended to be less restrictive than measures in similar resort communities, which is good news for vacation rental owners in Breckenridge. Vail, for example, requires a response within 30 minutes of calls to the complaint hotline. Owners who manage their own short-term rental properties or use a property management company are worried about the burden of responding to complaints within one hour, especially if the call may come in the middle of the night or require a visit to the rental unit.
An Ounce of Prevention
There are things you can do to try to avoid trouble with the new rules. Parking, noise and trash are the most common complaints concerning short-term rental units in mountain communities like Breckenridge. Try to head trouble off at the pass by including your neighborhood rules in your marketing materials and rental agreements and remind guests of the rules when they arrive. Post a friendly reminder near your trash cans about being careful with garbage – think bears! – and ask guests to keep the volume down so everyone – visitors and neighbors – can enjoy everything Breckenridge has to offer.
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To read the new rules and regulations from the Breckenridge Town Council, go to: https://www.townofbreckenridge.com/home/showdocument?id=16079.