THE ANSWER APPEARS TO LIE IN THE REALM OF THE ‘NEVER NEVER’
Back in June we wrote to the Mayor of Randwick Council, bringing to his attention a particular residential building in Arden Street Coogee, which enjoys good access to the public transport that commuters/shift workers, students etc rely on. One tenant remained; all other apartments in the building were rented through short-term rental platforms with Airbnb championing the ‘clean out’.
Most of the apartments in said building – many of them studios - were being advertised at upwards of $150/night, or $1,050+ per week. The last remaining tenant described the situation as that of living in “an unlicensed hotel with no centralised management team” and asked, “is there any clearer example that Airbnb pushes actual residents out?”
Randwick’s Mayor didn’t reply to us. We did receive a note from one Councillor asking us what strategy we would like to see Council implement. One other Councillor wrote: “At the moment, as a Council there is very little we can do.” Strange, given that there are case law records online providing clear templates of what can be done, plus council is obviously using ratepayers’ monies to fund Planning and Enforcement Staff, so why aren’t these Staff Members working for their money?
Meanwhile, the one remaining tenant in the Arden Street property fears eviction when the lease period finishes, and other Randwick residents continue to flip homes onto Airbnb. Appears the advice they’re getting from commercial landlords of residential housing (see photo) is pretty correct: “The Randwick council (this is based on my experience with Waverley Council) very unlikely to get involved.”
Homes not Hotels Communities not Transit Zones People before Profits Neighbours not Strangers