MATTHEWS – The Town of Matthews is taking a wait and see approach to regulating short-term rentals.

Leaders received a complaint from a resident about a short-term rental property within her neighborhood. Town staff evaluated several factors around the growing trend, but ultimately recommended commissioners not to take any action at this time.

“I think there's a lot of unknowns surrounding the market,” Town Planner Darin Hallman told commissioners Aug. 23. .

Short-term rentals have become easier to find thanks to online databases like Airbnb and Vrbo.

Hallman said he found 22 single-family rentals from Matthews on Airbnb. That's a drop in the bucket compared to the nearly 9,000 single-family housing units in town.

Hallman said short-term rentals concentrate around areas of high tourism. He added that Asheville, Blowing Rock, Brevard, Cornelius and Wilmington are among North Carolina communities at the forefront of regulating short-term rentals.

State lawmakers, however, have introduced legislation (House Bill 829) that would prevent local governments from enforcing ordinances that would require owners from obtaining a permit or permission to rent or lease property, with few exceptions. Town staff would prefer to see how that legislation plays out.

Town Manager Hazen Blodgett said the noise ordinance may be one way to prevent rentals from disrupting residents.

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