This is a bit of an usual blog post for us, but I think it is worth a read if you believe in the Sharing Economy. Most importantly it highlights many of the reasons we know make home sharing so powerful and important. The following article appeared in the October 7th 2014 issue of the San Francisco Examiner. Positive Moral Implications of Sharing Home http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/positive-moral-implications-of-sharing-home/Content?oid=2908422. It was written by Rev. Melinda McLain who lives in Twin Peaks CA. and preaches at the Mira Vista United Church of Christ.
My interest in the article is not that she is a pastor and looking at this topic from that point of view, rather it is just how insightful she is and spot on about the value of home sharing. (See below.) I also like her phrase about “having space to share” vs. use of “home sharing.” It usually isn’t the whole house but offering a room etc. that is an important part of the Sharing Economy movement. This is true whether you are a motorcyclist using MotoStays.com with our pay-it-forward model or AirBnB.com that uses a for-profit plan.
You can find the whole article here http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/positive-moral-implications-of-sharing-home/Content?oid=2908422 but I thought it would be valuable to pull out some snippets and share directly. This piece was posted in the Opinions section of the paper as a comment on the San Francisco city vote being taking. This is primarily in regards to the very successful AirBnB model and the implication/impact of their rapid growth. You can learn the deep details here: https://sites.google.com/site/hspositionpaper/. BTW, it should be noted that San Francisco did indeed pass the law that legalizes home sharing – in so many words. Here is a supporting link from Wall Street Journal blog: http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2014/10/08/san-francisco-passes-airbnb-law-to-legalize-short-term-rentals/.
Some of Rev. Melinda McLain’s key insights:
- The relationships achieved by home sharing are priceless
- People often become hosts/guests because they have common interest
- Sharing the best of her city and local culture is rewarding
- Striving towards excellence in hospitality is important
- Home sharing helps to stretch tight budgets
These quotes come directly from the article:
“Today, the Board of Supervisors will consider legislation to legalize home-sharing. While I agree that this is a complicated issue from a regulation perspective to make sure that the practice is not abused, I urge the supervisors to not lose sight of the great benefits that come when citizens from different cultures come together…. The relationships that result are priceless and make our city stronger.
Like most San Franciscans, I think a lot about how to spend my money…
When we became Airbnb hosts, it was because a pastoral colleague in New York was using the platform to rent out spare bedrooms in her large parsonage to fund social-justice activities through her church. She also found that sharing her living space was a terrific way to practice the biblical principle of offering hospitality to the stranger in a concrete way.
What actually happened when we became hosts was quite miraculous. We learned from our guests in ways we could not have imagined… And our guests have learned from us about San Francisco values. … we are committed to excellent hospitality. My spare bedroom is not a rent-controlled unit. It has, however, become an important venue for cultural exchange and a source for helping us continue to afford to live in the city that we love.”
– From sfexaminer.com – ‘Positive Moral Implications of Home-Sharing’
If a pastor believes home sharing has positive moral implications then maybe you can benefit from the practice and experience too. Certainly, that is the exact feedback you would get from us and others who are currently spending less and experiencing more.