Wannabe Airbnb hosts in Lakewood will need to wait a little longer.
The suburb’s City Council has delayed a vote over whether to legalize short-term rentals so it can further review certain provisions.
The council was supposed to vote on a proposed ordinance Aug. 23, but members said they needed more time to discuss taxes on the rentals, and the zoning of them.
“It became apparent not only over the weekend but some time leading up that there are a few more components to this piece,” Mayor Adam Paul said during the meeting. “There have been amendments that have been proposed that the community hasn’t really had a chance to weigh in or see.”
Lakewood officials told BusinessDen the proposed rules will be heard by the Housing Policy Commission, but a date for those discussions has not been determined.
Those amendments, Councilmember Sharon Vincent told BusinessDen, were proposed at the beginning of the meeting and discussed with city staff before they were available to the public.
“It was easier to just, say, go back to the drawing board,” Vincent said.
The proposed ordinance, as it was written at the time of the Aug. 23 meeting, would allow people to rent their homes for fewer than 30 days, something often done through sites like Airbnb and Vrbo. Lakewood code currently states that lodging facilities must register with the city and must be in specifically zoned areas.
Plenty of people haven’t waited for legalization. A search on Airbnb’s website Wednesday morning showed numerous listings within Lakewood city limits, including a handful with more than 100 reviews.
There were 19 comments on the Lakewood City Council meeting website with varying degrees of support or opposition to the ordinance as originally proposed. The measure did not address how a hotel or tourism tax would be applied, or discuss zoning changes.
The original measure called for those seeking a license to provide a minimum of two off-street parking spots, and to give notice of their application to all neighbors within a 250-foot radius of them within 10 days.
No short-term rental properties in Lakewood would be allowed to operate within 300 feet of one another, according to the original measure. Lakewood would also require proof of an in-person home inspection before a license is issued.
Denver does not, although the capital city requires short-term rentals to have smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
The ordinance would also only allow people to rent out their primary residences.
If approved, the measure would become effective 30 days after it is signed by the mayor, but would not be enforced until March 1, 2022, to give potential license applicants time to come into compliance with the new ordinance.