The Real Deal New York

Time’s up — again — for illegal hotels

New law targets nightly stays, but city may lack staff to clean out rooms

December 03, 2010 10:20AM
By C. J. Hughes

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127 Madison, a site of alleged illegal boarding activity

From the December issue: They dot the cityscape from Uptown to Downtown, refuges for bargain-hunting visitors but annoyances for established hotels: rooms rented — illegally — for the night. But a new state law that takes effect May 1 will make it tougher to rent out New York apartments as short-term hotel rooms. The law, passed last summer, bans rentals for 30 days or less while allowing longer-term rentals. The question is how effective the new law will be. Some nightly room operators show no signs of reining in the practice, or even, it seems, tweaking their business model. And while operators may have the impression that they can do as they please for a few more months, they’re actually wrong: The state’s decades-old housing code already forbids leasing most apartments by the night. [more]

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