If you’re going away for vacation this holiday season, the idea of making some extra cash by renting out your home for a few days through a site like Airbnb might seem appealing. But make sure you check with the local rules and regulations, first.
The law in Fairfax County states that only owners of single-family homes can apply for a special permit that would allow them to rent out their domiciles like a bed and breakfast. That means people who own “attached homes” — such as apartments, townhouses and condos — are prohibited from renting out rooms.
Per the staff of the Reston Association, RA members must follow the same rules of the county.
Naturally, the duality means some locals aren’t happy. A blogger at Restonian recently wrote:
Apparently ‘Live, Work, Play, Get Involved’ doesn’t apply to peasants who own townhouses and condos. But – have a single-family home the rest of us can’t afford? Feel free to charge for visits. While this is more the fault of the county than the RA, we wonder what’s next.
RA CEO Cate Fulkerson said the association felt the need to clarify the regulations for RA members’ homes after some people complained.
“Reston Association is obligated to uphold its restrictive covenants. When we learned of home-sharing concerns from some of our members, the first task we undertook was to determine whether the homeowners [were] in compliance with state and local ordinances,” Fulkerson said in an email. “If we find that no approvals of licenses have been obtained, then we set out to work with the owner, in accordance with the Association’s Governing Document, to come into compliance.”
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