Millcreek Airbnb owners hit with new regulations or face fines

Airbnbs have been rising in popularity over the years.

In Millcreek Township, they’re only permitted in certain areas near Presque Isle, but people living in that area want to make sure property owners are being held accountable. Millcreek supervisors passed an ordinance Tuesday aimed to regulate Airbnbs and other limited lodging permitted within the township.

Limited lodging is permitted only in the overlay district in Millcreek Township near Presque Isle, but previously, owners of Airbnbs in those locations have had little to no regulation.

With this in mind, community members voiced their concerns with the township, and the board is responding.

“A lot of our residents have shown concern about what this might mean for their neighborhood, so we really thought that we needed to put some policies and guidelines in place for anyone looking to put in an Airbnb or Vrbo in Millcreek Township,” said Kim Clear, Millcreek Township supervisor.

Some of the ways that they’re regulating these limited lodging locations is by mandating screening, yearly inspections, permits and certifications. Failure to comply with the application process will result in penalties for the owner and up to $1,000 in fines.

A common understanding when it comes to Airbnbs is their usage as a place for people to move into and party, which supervisors hope to help crack down on.

Now, neighbors have shown concerns in the part over these Airbnbs, and supervisors hope to answer those concerns.

“We obviously heard the concerns that people expressed about, ‘Well what if this person has a big party or they’ve got all these cars and are taking up all of the spaces in the street.’ Those things that really do upset a neighborhood, so the regulations that are passed today do things to address those concerns,” said Mark Shaw, Millcreek Township solicitor.

These new changes and requirements will go into effect starting Oct. 5, so if you are a property owner impacted, be sure to properly register with the township or face penalties.