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The Weather Network
May. 26, 2019 | Sunday
Editorials and Opinions
Letter to the editor: Who wants to live beside a party house?
File photo.

SUBMITTED BY DEBORAH SYMINGTON, NOTL.
OPINION

Dear editor:

This letter is in response to Jason Clements' May 2 letter, (Short-term visitors are vital to NOTL's economy).

Unfortunately, many of the licensed cottage rentals are actually villas and owners are renting the homes to up to 10 unsupervised guests at a time. If you add a pool and hot tub to the mix, you have a "party house." 

Had the rentals, with absentee landlords, blended into the residential communities of NOTL seamlessly, then we wouldn't be having this conversation now. The noise from guests keeps neighbours up for most of the night, every weekend, during high season. Would anyone want to live next to that?

There have been many other issues as well. Because the town adopted a bylaw that totally ignored the needs of local residents, and because rental owners were so focused on the money and not the rights of residents, the premise of short-term rentals in residential communities has become quite distasteful.

The town and the owners of short-term rentals have themselves to blame. Since experiencing two problematic short term rental properties nearby, it is my opinion that only owner-occupied (or on-site manager) two-bedroom homes (with a limit of five occupants), without pools and hot tubs, should be permitted in the residential communities of NOTL.

These should also be spaced no less than one kilometre apart so residents do not find themselves living within a cluster of rentals with no real neighbours. 

In the case of B&Bs, they, too, should be owner-occupied in residential communities. Any other model of short-term rental should be located in tourist-zoned or commercial- or industrial-zoned areas where renters won't disturb anyone.

I don't buy into "more is better" and that a tighter bylaw will affect the tourist industry here. Lowering the occupancy and disallowing pools and hot tubs, and having an on-site owner or manager, will provide for quality tourists; not party-time tourists.

The only thing that would be reduced is the income potential of absentee owner, short-term rentals.

Deborah Symington

NOTL

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