Exploring Recent Changes in City Ordinances and What They Mean for Hosts and Guests

The Mayor and Council talked about renting homes for short periods at their meeting on April 18, 2023. Right now, the city treats short-term rentals like long-term ones. If you’re renting your own home where you live, and you only have 1 or 2 tenants, you don’t need a special permit from the city. But if your home is where you live, and you have 3 or more tenants, you do need a permit, and they check your place every year. When looking for a rental property, you only need to choose a reputable and trusted company, similar to Premier Rentals, that offers a wide range of services.

If your home is not where you live, and you rent it to 1-5 people who aren’t related or to 1 family, you also need a permit and inspections every year. These rules apply no matter how long people stay in your place, and there’s no limit to how many days you can rent it out in a year.

Conversely, the county treats short- and long-term rentals differently, and these rules apply to all properties no matter how many tenants you have. They even make platforms like Airbnb register. In the city, short-term rental platforms don’t have to register, but the city can see what they’re up to through the county’s registration records.

The city can make its own rules for short-term rentals and could even make them tougher than the county’s. They can also make short-term rental platforms register if they want. They can even use the county’s rules as their own, like they do with the county’s building code.

At the April 18 meeting, the Council developed new rules for short-term rentals in the city. These rules might be stricter than the county’s. They also talked about telling the state’s SDAT if someone might be breaking the Homestead Property Tax Credit rules, stopping LLC-owned properties from getting short-term rental permits, and making clear definitions for hosts, resident hosts, and property owners. They also wanted to know how many short-term rentals there are in the city.

These changes primarily focus on the inclusion of short-term rental regulations, definitions, and host responsibilities within Chapter 144 of the City’s ordinances.

Here is a summary of the changes made in the document. The document introduces the regulation of short-term rental units (e.g., Airbnb) as a separate occupancy category.

Section 1 – Amendment to Statement of Policy: The “Statement of policy” in Chapter 144 is amended to include references to short-term rental units. It specifies that all rental dwelling units and short-term rental units must be licensed and regulated to protect the health, welfare, and safety of residents and visitors.

Section 2 – Amendment to Definitions: Definitions related to short-term rentals and hosting platforms are added to Chapter 144.

Section 3 – Amendment to Occupancy Permits Required: This section is amended to include short-term rental units as a category requiring occupancy permits. It also introduces various requirements for short-term rental hosts, such as insurance, safety measures, and notification to homeowners’ associations.

Section 4 – Amendment to Revocation; Reinstatement: Changes are made regarding the revocation and reinstatement of occupancy permits, including the suspension and revocation of short-term rental licenses.

Section 5 – Addition of Challenge to Affirmation: A new section is added, allowing challenges to affirmations made during short-term rental license applications.

Section 6 – Addition of Short-Term Rental Licenses; Host Requirements: This section establishes the requirements for short-term rental licenses and host responsibilities, including guest limits and record-keeping.

Section 7 – Incorporation of County Code Requirements: This section incorporates provisions from the County Code related to short-term rentals and information sharing with hosting platforms.

Section 8 – Amendment to Violations and Penalties: Changes are made to penalties for violations of the ordinance.