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Carmel Airbnb causing headaches for neighbors

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Posted at 9:22 PM, Jul 09, 2024

CARMEL — Cheswick Place resident Christin Diehl moved to Carmel two years ago for the safe and quiet neighborhoods. This past weekend, an unconscious body was lying in a front yard near her house.

“It was terrifying,” Diehl explained. “There were over 15 emergency vehicles.”

Diehl told WRTV that emergency services pulled out numerous victims for what appeared to be overdoses.

“My kids are little, they thought maybe they had broken bones,” Diehl shared.

Earlier this year, a neighbor on Diehl’s street sold their home to Vacation Homes LLC. Since February, they have been operating the home as a short term rental.

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The Cheswick Place neighborhood covenants prohibit any type of short term rental.

“We gave them the required notices, did not hear anything back,” explained Cheswick Place Home Owners Association President David Morton. “We’re then forced into pursuing a legal case against them to stop.”

The short term rentals have not stopped since the HOA filed a lawsuit in April.

As of Tuesday, you could book the home on VRBO for $525 a night.

The home is also in violation of Carmel’s short term rental ordinance since it was never approved for a variance.

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In a statement provided to WRTV, the City of Carmel said:

“We are concerned about the medical emergency that occurred at a residence in our community this past weekend. We recognize how distressing this incident has been for local residents.

The home where this occurred was operating as an illegal short-term rental as the city does not allow non owner-occupied rentals. The city has also had multiple conversations with the owner about the illegality of this rental property prior to this incident.

Further information is still being collected which may lead to additional enforcement action from the city, including reviewing our code enforcement practices.”

While the city acknowledges the illegal activity, Cheswick Place residents are seeking more action from the city.

“All we are asking for is that they enforce the ordinances they have,’ said Morton.

"This weekend was very eye opening,” shared Diehl. “If they want to rent it, follow the same rules that everybody else has to follow."

On Thursday, July 11, the City of Carmel announced it would be taking legal action against the rental property after "numerous attempts to contact the owner via multiple means of communication requesting the compliance with city ordinances."

"The continuous disregard for residents’ concerns and the disturbances caused by this illegal rental must be stopped," the City of Carmel said in a statement. "All these attempts have been rebuffed leaving the city with no choice but to take strong action through the court system."