The Athens-Clarke County Mayor and Commission will consider an ordinance regarding short term rentals at this evening’s commission meeting. Supporters want a sunset provision which would end short term rentals in single family residential zones after two years. Some property owners oppose the move.
“Simply outlawing all short term rentals across Athens in residential neighborhoods basically takes away a category of short term rental that is useful to all the people who visit Athens, who bring money to Athens,” according to Stephen Davis who owns a rental property in Athens. “Of course it’s an undue, at least we feel, an undue hardship on those owners who are responsible.”
He says those restrictions would likely result in him having to sell his property.
“I’m retired and my wife is retired, this is the only property that we own. We’re using it for retirement income.”
Davis says the property sustains itself.
“It supports itself and it provides some income and we think it’s an amenity to the neighborhood.”
He says the home has had a trouble-free history as a rental.
“Our neighbors know us and they know how to reach us,” Davis said. “And in seven years of renting it, we’ve never had any problem with disturbing the neighbors or any other sort of untoward behavior.”
Davis believes stricter enforcement of rental party house could reduce issues in neighborhoods without eliminating all short term rentals. The Commission meeting is 6 pm Tuesday.