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Major Landlord Files Lawsuit Against Airbnb

National Hotel

Apartment Investment & Management Co. is suing Airbnb, making it the first major landlord to take legal action against the home-sharing company. AIMCO, which manages about 50,000 apartments throughout the U.S., filed lawsuits in California and Florida seeking an undetermined amount for losses and damages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

AIMCO claims Airbnb is assisting tenants in a breach of their leases, which do not allow short-term rentals, and profiting off the revenue. The company said buildings have incurred damage and a loss of revenue because of renters using Airbnb. Short-term renters have created nuisances and disturbances as well. The landlord wants the court to forbid Airbnb from listing any AIMCO buildings on the site in the future.

The lawsuit could pave the way for other landlords who have had difficulties with Airbnb, Green Street Advisors analyst Conor Wagner told the Wall Street Journal.

Airbnb unveiled its Friendly Building Program in September to provide profit-sharing for building owners, but landlords were not very enthusiastic about the program and were concerned short-term residents would change the environment of the buildings.

Airbnb also faces strong criticism and lawsuits from city officials, including in San Francisco and New York, but has been trying to find ways to work with regulators.