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ACC Commissioners Debate Limiting Short-Term Rentals

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A committee of Athens-Clarke County Commissioners discussed limiting short-term rentals like Airbnbs to increase housing supply.

The Commission’s Government Operations Committee met yesterday to evaluate the growing number of short-term rentals (STRs) in Athens, which some community members say add to the county’s housing shortage.

As of Sept. 2022, there are 938 short-term rental units listed in Athens, according to the ACCGov. 72% of these units are single family housing, leaving 635 less homes on the market for Athens families.

District 5 Commissioner Tim Denson said that Athens has a surplus of short-term rentals to the detriment of housing stock and affordability.

While Denson argued to limit the number of short-term rentals by an unspecified number, District 3 Commissioner Melissa Link said to use geographic location to reduce short-term rentals.

Denson said that short-term rentals should not be limited to primary household owners, but that ACCGov should limit investors to owning only two short-term rentals in the county.

Commissioners and staff did not specify the release date of their finalized plan, but will continue drafting a plan in the coming weeks.