What can I do about my Neighbour's Air BnB property ?

Hi everyone,

I live in a small block of beachfront residential units on the Gold Coast in Qld. Recently, a neighbour has decided to rent his unit out through Air BnB. He does not live there anymore. Suddenly, we are having frequent issues with extra noise, parties, unruly behaviour, unknown people wandering around day and night and people knocking on neighbours doors asking "how to check in".

I have complained to the Body Corp and owners about these issues who claim there isn't much that can be done. The owners do not seem to care and do nothing to address the concerns of permanent residents.

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions on how to combat this ? Do I lodge a complaint with Council, Police, ATO, Air BnB ?

Thanks for any assistance.

UPDATE:

Thank-you everyone for your insightful comments and helpful suggestions ;) They have all been taken onboard.

I will just wait now until I hear back from the GCCC and I will be sure to let you know the outcome of that investigation.

It may very well be the case that they can't take action or shut it down immediately, and I am ok with that.

But what I do know is, the laws will only change when long suffering neighbours stand up to absent investors turning residential buildings into quasi motels and report them to the relevant authority.

If we do nothing, nothing will change.

All the best.

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Comments

  • tell the owner about this, he should have set of rules for the guests, my experience with aribnb is most of the guests like 99.9% of them are respectful to the neighborhoods and rules i think either you're too senstivie about this or he doesnt have his rules pinned.

    • It's not just me taking umbrage about the noise. A couple of other tenants have also lodged complaints. And Yes, he has rules about noise, doesn't mean drunk guests follow them.

      • +1

        Indeed. You can have all the rules you want, but it doesn't mean A) people will actually follow them and B) even if they do, the next guest arriving tomorrow may choose to violate the laws.

        The problem here is there's no penalty for the AirBnB customer (they'll be gone tomorrow and therefore don't care) and none for the owner either. It's not like police charge a call out free to the property owner when they're called to tell the guest to quieten down. Council can't do anything, and neither can the state government.

        • Exactly Cluster

  • +10

    Rent the place and install a hidden camera (doesn't have to be connected to anything).
    Next time you see a new airbnb guest, be nice to them and say "I would be careful in there, I think they have hidden cameras installed".
    What happens next is, guest finds camera, reports it to airbnb and police, he gets banned from airbnb and charged by police. That way you never see him or the guests again :)

    • +4

      that's so evil and I like it.

  • +3

    At night, put super glue in the front door key hole and wait for the next renter to have a fit when they can't get the door open

  • +3

    Call Tracey Grimshaw

    • -3

      she's too fat to even rock up

  • -1

    You can't ban airbnb as it's unconstitutional.

    • +3

      Care to elaborate on which part of the Constitution?

    • -2

      Idk, its not the word Constitutional but something in the lines that if you do ban it, it means nothing because it can be reverted almost immediately regardless of strata decision

  • -1

    Buy the place from your neighbour, use it to store your miniature train collection or your antique felt hats that your had made for you in the late 1800's. You remember, before the great war…

    People have a right to use their property as they see fit. As others have said if it gets too loud, call the council or police to lodge a noise complaint. Seeing "unfamiliar people" is just part of being on earth.

    • Sure he can do whatever he wants with his property, I couldn't give 2 hoots. They could even Air BNB it!

      Just so long as it doesn't adversely impact on my life or that of my children.

      Nobody has the right to behave in such a manner which makes the lives of people around them a misery.

      When you live in close proximity to others, you should be mindful of how loud your music is and how loud you are screaming at your drunk mate.

      • -1

        Actually, they do have long standing rights. Rights to use, enjoy or benefit from their property as they see fit.

        You choose to live in close proximity to others. That's a potential caveat of your situation, you could end up being in close proximity to people you may not like.

        • +1

          Incorrect. That's why there are laws against loud noise, parties and offensive behaviours. It's not the people I don't like. I don't know them. It is their noise and behaviour.

        • +1

          You really don't know the law if you think that people can do whatever they see fit within their property in a residential area.

          They can't make excessive noise, have a chicken pen, run a brothel, use power tools after a certain time. The list in endless. The problem lies in getting the Police and Council to enforce these laws within a reasonable time-frame.

          • -1

            @firebucket:

            You really don't know the law

            Psst.. I'm pretty sure @zeggie is a lawyer.

          • @firebucket: Non sequitur.

            Making excessive noise is not the same as:

            1. a chicken pen - actually expressly allowed by law in GC; or
            2. a brothel - conditionally permitted based on the planning scheme in GC.

            Feel free to point to anything that grants Police or Council have power to enforce excessive noise against the owner. I can tell you there is none.

            As long as the airbnb property doesn't breach planning or bylaws then Council is powerless. If the property is rented, Police can only issue a fine to the occupant ie. the airbnb renter, after repeated visits and warnings.

            I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but that's basically how it is. I've tried to assist as much as possible, thus the quantity of my posts here.

            • @zeggie: I feel like we agree on this. I am happy for them to remain there provided they do not make excessive party noise that could be deemed offensive, and therefore unlawful.

              Furthermore, I am not in favour of any Airbnb listing where the operators have not obtained the correct planning approval – which is often a material change of use – the application fee for which is in excess of $8,000), and the GCCC have the power to penalize those who are non-compliant.

              I am not after any special treatment. I just ask that my neighbour behaves in a lawful manner.

  • +3

    Swear to god there should be a sister site to airbnb called airbnb-neighbour where you can personally critique the guests yourselves.

    Level playing field then.

    Because if you drill down to the cause of the noise it's always the bloody occupants.

  • +2

    Gotta keep calling the cops, and write bad google reviews.

  • +4

    Put up a sign on your door referencing the units who dont care if there's AirBnB in the building.

    For any trouble checking in or fresh towels please see unit 2,3 and 6.

    I think they will soon start to care if they get knocks on the door. If you want to avoid confrontations you can even slide a piece of paper under the door with those details. This is relatively easy to solve if all the other units are onboard.

    • +1

      For any trouble checking in or fresh towels please see unit 2,3 and 6

      and if every unit owner does it, it will be more fun. Treasure hunt for the visitors and they will be like f**k it. I am out of here!

  • +2

    Book into the property for the night and sew prawn heads into the curtains and the cushions.

  • +2

    Maybe you should put yours up on AirBnB too.

  • +1

    Lucky I got out of flat complexes and dense townhouses already! This thread really brought back memories of how many days it was impossible to sleep cos our block was basically full of renting Uni students and only 2 or 3 out of 12 townhouses were owner-occupiers.
    That suburb is now very rent heavy and even denser and can tell the people who live there just don't give a crap about the place because it's all temporary for them, no investment in the place.

    And that's before Airbnb which just makes it 10x worse!

  • +1

    Post a deal for free drink and canapés on ozbargain….see how the Airbnb guests enjoy some extra guests

  • +2

    Have you spoken with the owner?

    You never know, they might be quite reasonable and fix it.

  • +1

    book the property under fake name and destroy it.

    Actually, don't do it

    Post a poster on your front door like
    " No Air BNB" or
    "Get off my f**king lawn" or
    "Gun owner"

    • The poster idea would be a good way to get the body corporate to bring in a new by-law saying that the corridor-facing side of front doors must be painted white and not have anything posted on them.

      The last one would also be a good way to get the police to kick your door down…

  • +1

    Did you consider when you bought a unit that maybe there would be noise.

    I've lived in apartments (multiple) for a good 5 years, both renting and as owner in separate locations. People who live there who get shitty at living in close proximity to others really grind my gears. It's what you signed up for.

    If its serious, call the cops. But I hope you aren't one of those people who call the cops every weekend because you can hear people talking and laughing. :S

    • It comes down to the use of the property. Most residential properties are designed as dwellings for a single household to live in long term. Once you start renting out rooms, or the whole dwelling, it changes the use from a dwelling to either short term accommodation, rooming accommodation or other uses. These do require planning approval from GCCC depending on the land use zone you are in as well as building approval from a third party building certifier as in most cases you need to change the features of the building e.g. fire warning systems, exit signs etc etc.

      For a home business, such as a bed and breakfast, you do need to reside in the dwelling while your guests are there. If you leave the dwelling and let them use it, then it is not a bed and breakfast.

      • +1

        These do require planning approval from GCCC depending on the land use zone you are in as well as building approval from a third party building certifier as in most cases you need to change the features of the building e.g. fire warning systems, exit signs etc etc.

        If this is correct, why isn't your bodycorp or council doing something about it?

        • +1

          As previously stated. I have reported the issue to GCCC and they are investigating whether the correct approvals are in place. They have asked for screen shots of the Air BNB advertisement. So I guess from here they will see whether or not they have the necessary approvals.

          This was only done a few days ago - So I do not expect instant results.

          • -1

            @firebucket: GCCC will issue a "Show Cause" notice. The owner can simply dispute the allegations. GCCC have no powers to investigate. Nothing happens.

            Life goes on.

    • +1

      There is a large difference between buying an apartment and expecting occasional noise from people you know and can complain to, and the next door apartment being turned into a hotel where there could be a different guest every night who simply doesn't care about your complaints.

  • +1

    Move to a new place?

    • +1

      Why should the OP move if they are not the ones causing the problem? It's like victim blaming.

      • OP should not have to move. Agreed. Unfortunately moving is usually the easiest and quickest solution.

        • Not that quick and easy when you own the property and have done so for several years prior to the arrival of Air BNB.

          • @firebucket: Just putting it out there. Sometimes it is easier.

            I once lived next to a very drug affected individual who regularly hosted her other drug affected family and friends. Police called at least once a week. OC twice a week for damage. Incidents ranged from knocking on every unit owners door at 3am demanding $20 to buy cigarettes, falling asleep at the wheel of her car in the middle of the common driveway meaning no one could leave for work, to hosting a drug fueled party in which everyone's unit fronts were damaged. She and her friends were always smart enough to smash up security cameras and hide in their unit and not answer the door whenever police rocked up.

            Best outcome was a reprieve of 2-3 days when police arrested her when she made the mistake of smashing windows of a neighbour at 4am and then falling asleep in the middle of the common driveway. Then it started up all over again.

            After 6 months of that BS with no resolution it was far simpler to just sell up and move.

            • @zeggie: Thanks, but I definitely won't be going anywhere.

              It's a marathon, not a sprint.

              “The only thing necessary for the triumph of Air BnB is for good neigbours to do nothing.”

  • Gold Coast? beautiful, I am booking now

  • OP, if you were in his shoes, would you leave your apartment empty? Or would you try to maximise your return on investment?

    • +1

      He does not have to leave it empty and I haven't said anything like that. There are plenty of options apart from Air BNB. The long term rental market in this area is very competitive and lucrative. I don't even have an issue with Air BNB per se. I just have an issue with the people he is renting it to and the amount of loud partying they do.

      • +2

        OP, I feel for you. There's nothing worse than having loud, disruptive neighbours. But the truth is that Air BNB is way more lucrative than long term rental. For instance, I own a 2 bedroom apartment with 'cityscape' views. I've had long-term tenants living there while one of the neighbours is Air BNBing his similar-sized apartment. Based on his calculations, his ROI is 67% more than mine…

        • +1

          Yes it's definately an interesting argument and I have an investment unit that could be rented through Air BNB, but I choose not to. It's pretty much set and forget with a long term tenant in it. And I don't have the headaches of cleaning, utilities, damages, complaints, increased rates and charges etc. The extra money would be nice, but I like the quiet of a long term tenant.

          • +2

            @firebucket: Same :)

  • +1

    I just had an idea. The owner would probably prefer couples or families hiring the place rather than scummy house party people right?
    If the owner sets a minimum booking period for like 2 or 3 days, this would likely illuminate the shitty guests, as they won't want to book 2-3 nights just for 1 party.

    If you think that's a good idea, might be worth contacting the owner and suggesting it.

    Better for the owner in terms of damage to the property, and better for the neighbors.

  • +2

    Thank-you everyone for your insightful comments and helpful suggestions ;) They have all been taken onboard.

    I will just wait now until I hear back from the GCCC and I will be sure to let you know the outcome of that investigation.

    It may very well be the case that they can't take action or shut it down immediately, and I am ok with that.

    But what I do know is, the laws will only change when long suffering neighbours stand up to absent investors turning residential buildings into quasi motels and report them to the relevant authority.

    If we do nothing, nothing will change.

    All the best.

  • +1

    Rent your unit out through Air BnB also and buy another one elsewhere (and live there).
    P.S. only kidding…

  • Rent it yourself and be really quiet.

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