Toronto: Airbnb Regulations in Cities

Author: Sharing Cities Alliance

Date of publish: March 2018

What's the main topic of this seminar?

It is undeniable that Airbnb and other fast-growing short-term rental platforms have been a game changer. In part due to this new revolution, interest in cities around the world (from tourists) has grown exponentially too, as it makes traveling easier, cheaper and (somehow) safer. Since this method of stay is new, also new regulations are required to ensure that both ends of the deal (the hosts and the tenant). This seminar was hosted by Tracey Cook, Executive Director of Municipal Licensing and Standards in Toronto. 

Key findings:

  • Toronto's perspective on the topic.
  • Discussion on the guiding principles for regulation (laws, compliance and punishments if violation of such occur).
  • Taxation system behind short-term stays. 
  • The role of hotel industry and hotel associations. Realization that a new participatory approach was needed in order not to provide the clash taxi-Uber path. 

"What opportunities do platforms such as Airbnb bring to the city? Do the positives compensate the negatives of increased tourism in cities? What is the role of local governments?  What compliance checks are needed in order to properly regulate short-term rental spaces? In this seminar all these questions are touched upon with the objective of creating a better understanding on the role of sharing & platform economy when it comes to regulating Airbnb in cities around the world, and how (local) governments can respond appropriately."

We are always committed to share as much as possible. However, materials originating directly from the interaction between our partner cities (such as online seminars, meetings, events and magazines) remains confidential and accessible only to partner cities. Click here to learn more about joining the Sharing Cities Alliance or contact us directly at