NHAR’s amicus brief regarding short-term rentals

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September 21, 2022

NH Realtors file amicus curiae

Earlier this month, the New Hampshire Association of Realtors filed a “friend of the court” brief – or amicus curiae – with the NH Supreme Court in the case of Conway v. Kudrick. The NH Supreme Court allows parties to assist a court by offering information, expertise, or insight which might have a bearing on the issues in the case.

Read NHAR’s complete brief here.

This case has potential statewide impact on private property owners in New Hampshire regarding the classification and regulation of short-term rentals by municipal zoning ordinances, and it could have a significant impact on private property rights throughout the state. 

In early 2021, the town of Conway sued Scott Kudrick for renting his property as a short-term rental, arguing that the activity was prohibited under that town’s zoning ordinance. A Superior Court found in favor of Mr. Kudrick, overturning Conway’s ban on short-term rentals, for a number of reasons. Most telling was the judge’s conclusion that renting out a property in a residential zone is an acceptable “residential purpose” so long as the “renters continue to relax, eat, sleep, bathe, and engage in other incidental activities” that the owner or a guest might engage in. 

Conway has appealed to the NH Supreme Court, and the NH Municipal Association has intervened in the case in support of the town’s position that it has the authority to eliminate a property owner’s ability to rent.

The protection of private property ownership rights is fundamental to NHAR’s mission. Among the core rights that a property owner typically has, and that an owner does not expect to be deprived of by regulation, is the right to rent out their property. 

It is well-established that municipalities have the power to utilize its zoning authority for the health, safety and general welfare of the community, and NHAR supports appropriate municipal regulations but opposes outright bans on short-term rentals through zoning.

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