I know a few essentially unemployed, all-but-officially-moved-in-with-their-boyfriend/girlfriend folks who make their pizza and liquor money by renting out their apartment on Airbnb. Most acknowledge that it's legally sketchy--and probably violating their lease--but generally avoid putting the blame for the city's rising rents on themselves.
Logan: You said you’re not breaking any laws, but you don’t want me to use your real name.
Anon: Ehhhhhhh, yeah, probably not. Just because of the landlords getting wind. I’d like to keep as low a profile as possible. You know, AirBnB is the biggest thing in SF driving up housing prices. People are taking 2 bedrooms off the market renting them out to foreigners or travelers instead of having a full time resident in there. So there are fewer places to live. They say getting an apt in SF now is harder than getting a job. It’s SO competitive to find a place worth living in. People aren’t moving
Logan: That makes sense, but what are you basing it on?
Anon: It’s just a fact. Everyone talks about it. Here, look at this: “‘Many landlords decided they would be able to make more money by renting (their properties) as tourist space,’ said Ted Gullicksen, president of the San Francisco Tenants’ Union, which promotes renters’ rights. ‘We’re seeing a big loss of rental housing stock, which we’re already losing through other means. This is added pressure.’” That’s from The San Francisco Chronicle.
Logan: Well then, you’re contributing to that problem.
Anon: I guess, but I’m okay with it. It’s making it a wealthier city. Richer people mean more taxes, mean better resources. So what’s so wrong with building up a strong economy in SF? So artists can’t live downtown? What’s so wrong with that? There are places I’ll never be able to afford either, but I’m not complaining. I don’t get why this is such a big deal.
I'm not completely sure about the whole "richer people means more taxes" bit, especially considering the Mayor went out of his way in attempting to block taxing Airbnb hosts (all because a major campaign donor happened to invest in the company), but yeah, fuck artists! And Big Bird too!