New Hampshire Could Permit Short-Term Rentals Statewide

A proposed bill would prohibit towns and cities from enforcing bans against short-term rental properties.

April 11, 2022, 12:00 PM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

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Kelly vanDellen / "Please Be Quiet" sign

A bill passed by the New Hampshire state Senate and currently making its way through the state House would prohibit cities from introducing bans on short-term rental properties, reports Rick Green.

The bill is advancing despite protests from municipal leaders who say it removes local control and prevents cities from enforcing their zoning codes and ordinances. "On the other side of the issue are members of the business community who benefit from visitors and homeowners who feel they should be allowed to rent out their house as they see fit."

Short-term rentals have become a flashpoint for concerns about housing costs and inventory, with the industry swallowing up significant amounts of existing rental housing stock in resort towns across the country. Vacation rentals also bring concerns about traffic, trash, noise, and the loss of community in residential neighborhoods.

Bob Quinn, chief executive officer of the N.H. Association of Realtors, who supports the bill, says "the bill allows inspections and registration of such properties and a municipality retains the right to regulate issues such as parking, noise, safety, health, sanitation or other local ordinances."

The issue will also be debated in the state's Supreme Court after a judge ruled against a town that sued a property owner for operating short-term rentals against local regulations.

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