Oswego Village Board considering whether to regulate short-term rentals

Oswego Village Hall, 100 Parkers Mill, Oswego

Oswego village trustees continue to study whether the village should regulate short-term rental properties.

The village currently doesn’t regulate short-term rentals. It is estimated that there are about six short-term rental units listed on Airbnb and Vrbo within the village, Oswego Development Services Director Rod Zenner said during a discussion of the issue at the March 18 Committee of the Whole meeting.

“Most neighboring communities do not have specific regulations regarding short-term rentals,” Zenner said during the meeting. “Communities that have looked to ban short-term rentals have faced constitutional challenges for taking of property without due process, interfering with property rights and privacy rights without due process and in violation of equal protection. The courts are still reviewing the legalities of the levels of restrictions.”

Those living in unincorporated Kendall County must register with the county if they are renting their house as a short-term rental. The property cannot be rented for more than 30 days at one time.

“I don’t think our neighborhoods need to become mini hotels.”

—  Oswego Village Trustee Tom Guist

In addition, Naperville requires a minimum 30-day rental period.

Following a public hearing, Oswego planning and zoning commissioners in April 2022 unanimously recommended approval of requiring owners of short-term rentals to register and pay a $2,000 annual fee. In addition, they recommended that short-term rentals would have to be a minimum of three days and a maximum of 30 days and that the owner of a short-term rental would be required to have less than three adjudicated violations annually to maintain their registration.

“If the Village Board is looking to implement the planning and zoning commission’s recommendation of setting the violation limit to three instances, then staff would recommend that in lieu of a registration, the applicants would have to apply for an actual license from the village, similar to a tobacco, liquor or gaming license,” Zenner told trustees.

He said the Village Board would then have the ability to revoke the license due to not meeting the requirements, such as having three violations in a single year as suggested by the Planning and Zoning Commission. A license would also allow the village to inspect the property as needed to address potential issues, Zenner said.

Village Trustee Andrew Torres asked what a violation would entail.

“It would be more issues of property maintenance or noise or parking violations, some sort of complaint where a code enforcement officer or police officer would be involved,” he said.

Oswego Village President Ryan Kauffman talked about the village's growth during his State of the Village address Feb. 29 at the Classic Cinemas Kendall 11 movie theater in Oswego.

Village Trustee Tom Guist said he would be in favor of implementing some sort of regulations.

“I don’t think our neighborhoods need to become mini hotels,” he said.

Trustees wanted to discuss the issue more before putting any rules in place. They also wanted to see what homeowners associations in the village are doing about short-term rentals.

“It’s clear that we’re going to do something,” Village President Ryan Kauffman said. “What that something is has yet to be determined.”

They expect to discuss the issue again at a committee of the whole meeting in June.