New minpaku law leaves many without accommodation
This is Stephanie of IMS.
On June 15th, a new “minpaku law” took effect in Japan that requires all private home-share operators to apply and receive special permission to rent out their property as temporary accommodations. As a result, many popular home-sharing websites saw a dramatic loss in business and listings, with some websites such as AirBnB reporting that 80% of their Japan listings have been removed from the site. AirBnB has now approximately 14,000 remaining.
After receiving a license and sending proof, property owners (“hosts”) are allowed to reinstate their listings, but many hosts are not expected to go through these steps, and countless tourists and persons in Japan on business have been left without accommodations. As of May 11, only 724 hosts had registered under this new law, despite registration being available since March.
Many individual municipalities have also imposed their own restrictions on home-sharing, adding to already-strict limitations such as the number of days any one property is allowed to be rented out. (The current restriction is 180 days per year.)
This, combined with a recent tourism boom (the highest rising rate in the world) and the Olympics scheduled for 2020, has many travelers opting to visit other countries instead.