Short-term rentals in Virginia Beach continue to be hot button issue

short-term rentals
Posted at 11:14 PM, Jun 01, 2021

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The debate on short-term rentals continues in the Resort City.

Many residents voiced their opposition to rent short term in Virginia Beach at Tuesday’s city council meeting. It's been an ongoing issue for years.

“There’s just a lot of strangers coming and going,” said one man.

Barbara Messner, a longtime Virginia Beach resident, believes there are 1,700 short term rentals in the city currently and says she doesn’t want any more.

“This is destroying the quality of people’s neighborhoods,” Messner said. “Just because somebody lives near the Oceanfront, it doesn’t mean it isn’t a residential neighborhood or their home where they live."

Messner argues STRs lead to high turnover of guests and more crime.

“You’re just bringing in too many, and there aren’t enough police even if you pull all the police from everywhere else,” she said.

Council members are proposing changes to short-term regulations, making them more restrictive.

Changes would limit how many people can stay, require parking and require owners to be at the property within an hour if there’s a problem.

“Noise, trash,” said Joan Fox who opposes short-term rentals. “Trash collection on Tuesdays; if they check out on a Saturday, then trash sits on street for three days. Then there are the extremes, crime, shootings… you’re putting our officers at risk.”

Kim Davenport went before the council Tuesday to ask for a conditional use permit to turn his duplex into a short-term rental.

“As far as noise issues, I’ve never received a complaint from any of my neighbors about my tenants,” Davenport said. “In fact, a majority of the noise in the neighborhood originates from the Fort Story vehicular traffic.”

The cards, however, were seemingly stacked against him. Davenport’s application was deferred for a month.

“Do not vote for a conditional use permit to allow a short-term rental of 8809 Atlantic Avenue,” said one woman of the property owned by Davenport.

Another proposal would allow short-term rentals only in certain parts of the city.

A city council vote on the proposed changes is set for June 15.