The epic battle Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is waging against short-term rentals website Airbnb has just advanced to next-level aggressiveness. The Daily News reports that the de Blasio administration has filed its first lawsuit against two landlords who have allegedly been renting out two buildings at 59 Fifth Avenue at 13th Street and 5 West 31st Street at Fifth Avenue through the website. According to city law, it's illegal to rent an apartment for less than 30 consecutive days. The offenders are brothers Hamid and Abdolmajid Kermanshah, who are also accused of violating fire and building codes.
According to the massive report the city released on Thursday, Schneiderman claims that operators like the Kermanshahs are putting added pressure on the city's short supply of apartments by keeping them off the market for long-term renters. They're also making majority of the funds from the endeavor, with 6 percent of Airbnb operators bringing in 37-percent of the revenue, or $168 million. If Schneiderman keeps it up, it sounds like there will be more than a few other lawsuits to follow.
· De Blasio administration files first lawsuit against apartments operating as illegal hotels through sites like Airbnb [NYDN]
· Report Slams Airbnb, Says 3/4 of All NYC Listings Are Illegal [Curbed]
· All Airbnb coverage [Curbed]