How To Get A Short Term Rental Property Permit

Learn how to obtain a short-term rental property permit with this comprehensive guide. From researching local regulations to submitting an application, follow these simple steps to legally rent out your property.

The growth of the sharing economy has revolutionized the way people travel and live, with short-term rental platforms such as Airbnb and VRBO becoming increasingly popular alternatives to traditional hotels. Consequently, many homeowners have started to consider converting their properties into short-term rentals as a way to generate additional income. However, before jumping into the short-term rental market, it is essential to understand the permitting process and the rules and regulations that govern this industry. 

7 Steps to Turn Your Property Into a Short-Term Rental?

  1. Research local laws and regulations

Before you can begin renting out your property, it is essential to research the local laws and regulations in your area regarding short-term rentals. These regulations can vary greatly by city and state, and in some cases, even by neighborhood. Some areas may have strict rules in place, such as zoning restrictions or homeowner's association (HOA) rules, which could prevent you from operating a short-term rental.

  1. Obtain necessary permits and licenses

Once you have determined that your property is eligible for short-term rental, you will need to obtain the necessary permits and licenses. These requirements will also vary by location, so it is crucial to research your local jurisdiction's specific requirements. Some common permits and licenses that may be required include a business license, a short-term rental permit, and a land-use permit.

  1. Register with the tax authorities

Renting out your property as a short-term rental typically means that you will need to pay taxes on the income generated. Therefore, you will need to register with the appropriate tax authorities, such as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for federal taxes and your state's department of revenue for state taxes. You may also be required to collect and remit occupancy taxes, which are usually charged to guests and paid to local governments.

  1. Obtain insurance coverage

It is essential to have adequate insurance coverage for your short-term rental property. This may involve purchasing additional coverage or modifying your existing homeowner's insurance policy. Many short-term rental platforms offer host protection insurance, but it is essential to understand the extent of the coverage and determine if you need additional protection.

  1. Prepare your property

Before listing your property, ensure that it is clean, safe, and well-maintained. This may involve hiring a professional cleaning service, upgrading safety features such as smoke detectors and fire extinguishers, and addressing any maintenance issues. Additionally, you will need to provide essential amenities such as linens, towels, and toiletries.

  1. Create a listing

Once your property is ready, you can create a listing on one or more short-term rental platforms. Take high-quality photos, write a detailed description of your property, and establish a competitive nightly rate by researching similar listings in your area.

Popular Short-Term Rental Companies and Their Rules/Regulations?

Airbnb is the most well-known short-term rental platform, with millions of listings worldwide. Hosts are required to comply with local laws and regulations, as well as Airbnb's own policies, which include a strict non-discrimination policy and safety requirements. Airbnb also offers a host guarantee, which provides up to $1 million in protection for property damage, and host protection insurance, which offers liability coverage.

  • VRBO (Vacation Rentals by Owner)

VRBO is another popular short-term rental platform, focusing primarily on vacation rentals. Like Airbnb, hosts are required to comply with local laws and regulations and adhere to the platform's policies. VRBO offers its hosts a $1 million liability policy and property damage protection, with different coverage levels available for purchase. is a global travel platform that includes short-term rental properties in addition to hotels and other accommodations. Hosts are required to comply with local laws and regulations, and the platform has its own set of rules and guidelines. does not offer specific host insurance coverage, so hosts should ensure they have adequate insurance protection through other means.

What are the Benefits of Having a Short-Term Rental?

  • Additional income

One of the most significant benefits of operating a short-term rental is the potential to generate additional income. By renting out your property, you can capitalize on the growing demand for alternative accommodations and potentially earn a substantial amount of money.

  • Flexibility

Short-term rentals allow for greater flexibility in managing your property. You can choose when to rent out your property and for how long, giving you control over your schedule and availability.

  • Meeting new people

Hosting short-term renters can provide you with the opportunity to meet new people from all over the world. This can be a rewarding and enriching experience, allowing you to learn about different cultures and make new friendships.

  • Tax benefits

Operating a short-term rental can offer tax benefits, such as the ability to deduct property-related expenses, including mortgage interest, property taxes, and maintenance costs.

Turning your property into a short-term rental can be a lucrative and rewarding endeavor, but it is essential to understand and comply with local laws and regulations, obtain the necessary permits and licenses, and ensure that your property is adequately insured and prepared for guests. By following these steps and partnering with popular short-term rental platforms, you can capitalize on the growing demand for alternative accommodations and reap the benefits of owning a successful short-term rental property.