Our customers come and stay in our homes to sleep, eat, and watch TV. They do the exact same things as the people next door. They are families with children who do not want their kids dragged through smoky casinos. They don't want to worry about their children being subjected to the throngs of people down at the pool and the potential security threat of crime or terrorism that any large crowd brings. Our customers include business people who come to Vegas for a few days to a few weeks and don't want to be subjected to eating out all the time or being forced to stay in a single room for a week or more. In fact there are many reasons our customers prefer to stay in homes instead of hotels that have nothing at all to do with being a nuisance.
One odd thing about this new law is that it would put the city in the position of breaking their own ordinance. Since the city of Las Vegas is currently subsidizing weekly rentals in R1 and R2 (i.e. residential) zones, they would in effect be in direct conflict with their own new law. Landlords within certain areas near downtown cannot rent for more than a week at a time because their customers (vagrants, prostitutes, drug addicts, etc...) are simply not workable with 31 day rentals. The city helps to keep these people off the streets by paying for their lodging a week at a time.
On the other hand, we serve an entirely different customer. We do not believe that it is a crime for people to come to Las Vegas for a few days and stay in a home. We also do not believe that the city of Las Vegas intended to criminalize families who want to keep their kids safe and away from danger as much as possible, or to make it a crime for businesspeople to come here on a 3 week assignment and stay in a house.
As the Las Vegas board has expressed, they want the partying and abuse to stop. We agree. But we do not agree that the activity mentioned above is a nuisance to
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Las Vegas Retreats
anyone. We do think that many residents complain about non-nuisance activity simply because they don't like being next to a rental. They cause a problem for the city because they constantly complain about "out of state license plates" or "somebody showed up in a limo". However, that kind of activity goes on in every Las Vegas neighborhood and has nothing to do with vacation rentals. It has more to do with the fact that we are a transient city by nature, and that there are thousands of limos in this town.
But more importantly, a limo or a license plate is not causing anyone a problem. Just because someone does not like something does NOT make it a crime, nor does it give someone the right to abuse the system and use it against their neighbors. We believe that vacation renters have the same rights as any resident for as long as they are in the home. They can come and go like their neighbors, swim in the pool like their neighbors, have a barbecue like their neighbors, or hire a limo to take them to the strip, just like their neighbors. In short, they can do any lawful activity that the neighbors would be allowed to do.
One illustration of this seemingly obvious notion would be the experience we ourselves have as residents here. We live in nice neighborhoods, and in fact, none of us lives anywhere near a vacation rental. We experience limos all the time, as well as out of state plates, wedding receptions, Bible study meetings (with 20 cars out front!), graduation parties, families having extended families over for a visit, etc... It never occurs to any of us that these activities are a problem, nor should they be. But they do not also become a problem because the people responsible happen to be renting for less than 30 days. Making it a problem for that reason is clear discrimination, which is in fact a crime.
We at Las Vegas Retreats will work with the city to craft a law which is effective against nuisance activity and at the same time defines exactly what it is and what it is not. Further, we would like to see a law that legitimizes the vacation rentals in this area, defines reasonable use clearly and establishes a process of compliance for licensed businesses and homeowners.
Las Vegas Retreats invites your comments on this story.