Managing the Short-term Rental Market in Canada: A Comparative Analysis of Policy, Planning, and Regulatory Strategies in 25 Municipalities
56 Pages Posted: 4 Mar 2022 Last revised: 25 Oct 2023
Date Written: October 19, 2023
Canada’s short-term rental (STR) market has grown considerably in recent years, resulting in a heightened focus by local governments on adopting regulatory approaches to manage it. Indeed, since 2018, an increasing number of Canadian governments (largely cities) have introduced regulatory frameworks to both mitigate perceived negative impacts of the STR market, as well as reap some of its benefits. In light of the gap in Canada-focused research on STR regulation, this article analyzes in comparative perspective the regulatory approaches adopted in 25 Canadian jurisdictions in response to the rise of platform-mediated home sharing. We find that aspects of regulation, such as licensing and registration, are increasingly a question, not of “if,” but rather “how” and “to what extent,” with the most promising approaches being those that reflect sophisticated understandings of the range of activity that plays out in the market and the various actors, including platforms and property managers, involved. For jurisdictions looking to introduce or tweak approaches going forward, there is potential benefit in reframing market regulation as a governance issue, rather than a technical legal problem. From this standpoint, of particular promise are joint governance approaches which involve municipalities and other local jurisdictions implementing distinct rules within the context of an overarching provincial framework.
Keywords: Short-term Rental, Market Failure, Regulatory Fracture, Regulation, Innovative Disruption, Community Impact
JEL Classification: R19, H79, Z38
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation