ACCE Principles of Short Term Housing Rental Regulations

Summary

Short-term housing rentals are becoming an important component of the travel and tourism economy in many communities throughout the country. Recently, some jurisdictions have passed -- or are considering the passage of -- onerous and burdensome regulations for short-term rentals, severely threatening this important new industry. As advances in technology have allowed owners, managers, and hosts to more easily connect with travelers and local residents looking for alternative accommodations, short-term rentals have grown in popularity.

ACCE Principles of Short Term Housing Rental Regulations

ACCE Principles of Short Term Housing Rental Regulation

Short-term housing rentals are becoming an important component of the travel and tourism economy in many communities throughout the country. Recently, some jurisdictions have passed — or are considering the passage of — onerous and burdensome regulations for short-term rentals, severely threatening this important new industry. As advances in technology have allowed owners, managers, and hosts to more easily connect with travelers and local residents looking for alternative accommodations, short-term rentals have grown in popularity. Short-term rentals provide a flexible housing option that allows travelers and local residents to spend longer periods of time in communities, in turn increasing their contributions to local small businesses. As such, municipalities should embrace this economic opportunity by working with industry stakeholders to establish a reasonable framework for regulating short-term rental activity so that all may benefit. Successful short-term regulation allows for municipalities to easily identify and contact a short-short term rental owner, make the tax collection and remittance obligations clear and reasonable, and ensure that short-term rentals remain an option for travelers and local residents. Furthermore, the most successful regulations balance the needs of long-term residents and the community as a whole.

Guiding Principles of Short-Term Housing Rental Regulations

  • Short-term rental policies should be developed through an open and transparent dialogue among policymakers, industry stakeholders, property owners and the public.
  • Short-term rentals fall under residential activity, considered under the same or similar guidelines and laws as those governing long term residential properties for purposes of zoning.
  • No additional laws or ordinances are necessary for dealing with neighborhood or nuisance issues. Existing laws and ordinances should be equivalent to and equal in application and enforcement as to full time residential properties.
  • Tax collection and remittance is not the responsibility of the platform or intermediary through which a short-term rental is located by a traveler or through which a reservation or payment is made. While platforms that process transaction may choose to offer tax collection and remittance as a service to their customers, ultimately it is the responsibility of the rental owner.
  • Any short-term rental regulations should recognize the value of short-term rentals in providing flexible housing stock and legalize and formalize short-term rentals as a unique and valuable alternative for travelers.
  • In cases where the registration of short-term rentals is desirable and includes the payment of an administrative or licensing fee, fees should be nominal and limited to the cost of administration.
  • Short-term rental regulations should never include provisions that require platforms to provide data that would jeopardize the privacy of their users, and should recognize that to do so would run afoul of federal laws.

The policing and enforcement of short-term regulations must remain under the purview of local political jurisdictions, and recognize that internet platforms should not be tasked with local code compliance responsibilities

 Approved by Board of Directors on January 20, 2016

Re-approved by Board of Directors on December 26, 2018