Homeowners in community in Gibsonville say Airbnb is turning their neighborhood into a disaster

GIBSONVILLE, N.C. – People who live in the Lindley Park Estates community say Airbnb is turning their neighborhood into a disaster.

They're convinced guests at a few homes are responsible for the recent increase in crime.

"House break-ins, car break-ins and my car was broken into," said Jim Healy, a homeowner.

Neighbors say it's been almost a year since things started changing.

Some say it began when they noticed unfamiliar faces.

"We don't know who these people are," Healy said.

Healy was recently a victim of a break-in.

He lives right next door to a home that a Gibsonville code enforcement officer says was once an Airbnb.

Officials say in August 2017, the owner was served a notice to stop all operations.

Healy still sees strangers walking around his neighborhood at all hours of the night.

He also shared that someone broke the fence to the community swimming pool.

It's a concern felt among others in the neighborhood.

"Oh, it worries me," said Janet Moyer, another homeowner. "Who's going to have their car stolen next? Is somebody going to be break in?"

Gibsonville Alderman Ken Pleasants wants to reinforce a town ordinance on the homeowner who uses Airbnb for guests.

"We just need to increase the severity of the penalty to the point where people just quit doing it," Pleasants said.

He said the town ordinance forbids homeowners from operating a tourist house which provides overnight guest rentals in their homes without a special permit.

The code enforcer says the home at 309 Cape Fear Way in the same neighborhood recently violated the ordinance.

Officials say the homeowner was slapped with a $50 fine.

"It's not that people don't like their neighbors, they just don't want them to engage in behaviors that endanger everybody else," Healy said.

Police say reports for the crimes were filed, but officers cannot pinpoint them to the Airbnb renters.

City officials plan to discuss stricter penalties for people who continue to disobey the ordinance.