In Gibsons, the term Residential Guest Accommodation (RGA) is used instead of Short Term Rental (STR).
An RGA is the rental of a residential dwelling unit, by paying guests, in any housing type (houses, secondary suites, lock-off suites, garden suites, cabins, apartments, and condos) for a temporary period (often less than a month.) RGAs are typically advertised through online venues such as Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway.com, Flipkey.com and others.
On Tuesday, July 26, 2022, after many months of discussion, new bylaws regulating the operation of Residential Guest Accommodations (RGAs) were adopted by Council.
The bylaws create two “streams” of permittable RGA – one for dwelling units that have a principal resident and one for dwelling units where no one permanently resides. Permission to operate within the second stream will be granted to a limited number of units under a Temporary Use Permit, with the category phased out entirely in two to five years. This approach was taken to help achieve Council’s primary goals of protecting long-term rentals and keeping the scale of business-type operations appropriate in residential areas.
A summary of the new RGA regulations has been developed to help the community interpret the new bylaws.
Enforcement of the new bylaws will begin on January 1, 2023.
Principal Residence means a single dwelling unit (see definition below) where a person lives at least nine months in a calendar year and conducts their daily affairs, including, without limitation, paying bills and receiving mail, and is the dwelling unit with the residential address used on documentation related to billing, identification, taxation and insurance purposes, including, without limitation, income tax returns, Medical Services Plan documentation, driver’s licenses, personal identification, and vehicle registration.
Dwelling Unit means a self-contained room or set of rooms, with a private entrance, that is designed and intended to be occupied as a residence, and includes, at a minimum, separate and distinct sleeping, sanitary and cooking facilities.
Residential guest accommodation (RGA) means the accessory use of a dwelling unit or a portion of a dwelling unit, for the accommodation of paying guests, but is not a residential tenancy.
Residential Tenancy means the use of an entire dwelling unit or portion thereof under a tenancy agreement that has a term of 30 days or more, and is subject to the Residential Tenancy Act.