Lawsuit: Tenant Evicted So Landlord Could Rent Apartment on Airbnb

Lawsuit hits at unregulated bit of SF housing market

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    File image. An Airbnb verified room. The San Francisco-based startup allows anyone to rent out their home or a room.

    A San Francisco man is suing his former landlord for evicting him in order to rent out the choice Russian Hill apartment on Airbnb, according to reports.

    Chris Butler lived in the $1,840 a month apartment for a decade, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

    He was evicted, according to his lawsuit, so that the landlord's husband could move in -- but instead, the landlord rented out the apartment for $145 a night on the popular Web site.

    An attorney for the landlords denies the allegations, according to the newspaper, and says that a family member of the landlord did move into the unit.

    Airbnb calls the story "an unacceptable violation of the law," the newspaper reported, but nonetheless a very isolated one.

    A "small percentage" of the 378,000 housing units in San Francisco are rented out via Airbnb, according to a study, so its affect on the market is probably limited.

    The situation is causing some city leaders to call for regulation of the secondary housing market.