Kyoto’s Economic Crime Investigation Division and the Ukyo Police Department have sent papers to prosecutors on a Nagoya-based real estate company under suspicion of illegally renting out a house in Kyoto City to tourists. A total of five people from the company, including the company president, are accused of acting as an intermediary for the property owner, by advertising the house as short-term accommodation on booking sites. This is a rare case where an intermediary or management company has been caught up in potential charges.
The 3-storey house was reportedly rented to foreign tourists on an overnight basis for around 50,000 Yen per night, without having any of the required hotel licenses or permissions. The house is in an exclusive residential zone, which currently prohibits any sort of hotel operations.
According to the Kyoto Prefectural Police, the company started BnB type operations in April 2016, hosting as many as 1,200 foreign visitors and with sales of up to 7 million Yen. The company is also alleged to have been advertising their services over the internet and at seminars.
The company was given an official warning but ignored it and continued to operate.
Source: The Kyoto Shimbun, October 30, 2017.