Atlanta Short Term Rental Regulation: A Guide For Airbnb Hosts

Atlanta, Georgia

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What are Short Term Rental (Airbnb, VRBO) Regulations in Atlanta, Georgia?

Atlanta has adopted a resolution targeting short-term rentals, like those listed on Airbnb and Vrbo, through new licensing requirements12345. The city mandates that all short-term rental hosts acquire an annual rental license and be a resident of Atlanta. The city caps short-term rental ownership at two properties per resident, with one of the properties having to be the owner’s primary residence. Hosts must pay $150 annually for the license, plus an 8% tax rental fee for each property. The ordinance includes hefty fines aimed at curbing noise and parties as to not disrupt the communities where the short-term rentals are located.

To obtain a license, hosts must present documentation of proof for the property, such as the deed, and additional documents such as a government ID and a short-term rental Homeowner’s Affidavit form. If applying for a license as a short-term rental on behalf of the primary owner, a short-term rental agent affidavit and short-term rental agent affidavit authorization will also be required. All affidavits must be notarized. It can take up to 10 business days to obtain the license.

Hosts can apply on the city’s Department of City Planning website and can also use the website to submit complaints and find out how many permitted rentals are in each district.The City Council is reviewing the regulations with a focus on updating the definition of a short-term rental, clarifying licensing requirements, and adding new procedures to the application process. This could result in changes to documentation requirements, zoning requirements, and current limitations on how many properties a single owner can operate. The new regulations went into effect on March 1, 2022.

Public safety is a major concern for Atlanta residents, with short-term rental properties in the city and metro area raising serious safety concerns. Between violent interactions at Airbnb rentals and the rise of “party houses,” some argue the short-term rental industry does more harm than good. The ordinance and regulation are necessary to address these concerns and ensure the safety of the community.

Short-term rental hosts in Atlanta are also responsible for collecting Atlanta’s hotel-motel tax under the new regulations. They must also collect state sales tax from their guests. State law requires short-term rental marketplaces such as Vrbo and Airbnb to collect state sales tax automatically on behalf of Georgia hosts and pay it directly to the state. Vrbo and Airbnb also collect local sales tax in Atlanta.

However, Vrbo and Airbnb don’t collect Atlanta’s hotel-motel tax on behalf of their hosts. Atlanta hosts are responsible for registering with the city, collecting the hotel-motel tax from guests, and paying the tax monthly. MyLodgeTax can automate and simplify short-term rental tax compliance, including registration and filing with state and local tax authorities.

Starting a Short Term Rental Business in Atlanta

Atlanta does not have a state-wide definition for short-term rentals, leaving it to local cities and counties to assert their own regulations. To operate a short-term rental in Atlanta, you must acquire an annual rental license, notify neighbors, and comply with local laws.

Understanding and adhering to Atlanta Airbnb regulations is crucial for legal and profitable rental operations.

Short Term Rental Licensing Requirement in Atlanta

Atlanta mandates that all short-term rental hosts acquire an annual rental license. This license is valid for one year and must be renewed annually. Hosts must also ensure that neighbors are notified of the short-term rental operation.

This requirement allows neighbors to be aware of the rental activity and provides a point of contact for any potential issues or concerns.

Required Documents for Atlanta Short Term Rentals

To obtain a short-term rental permit in Atlanta, hosts must provide the address of the short-term rental unit, agent/24-hour contact person information, a signed acknowledgement, the number and location of available parking spaces, an agreement to ensure the short-term rental does not disturb neighbors, a copy of the written rules posted in the unit, and a non-refundable application fee of $150.

These requirements ensure that the city has the necessary information to regulate the short-term rental market and maintain the quality of life for residents.

Atlanta Short Term Rental Taxes

Short-term rental hosts in Atlanta are required to collect and remit a 7% hotel-motel tax unless the platform through which they rent does it on their behalf. This tax is used to fund tourism and hospitality initiatives in the city. State law requires short-term rental marketplaces such as Vrbo and Airbnb to collect state sales tax automatically on behalf of Georgia hosts and pay it directly to the state. This simplifies the tax collection process for hosts and ensures compliance with state tax laws.

Atlanta-wide Short Term Rental Rules

Atlanta has several rules and restrictions for short-term rentals. The city caps short-term rental ownership at two units per owner and requires hosts to be city residents. This helps prevent the commercialization of residential neighborhoods and ensures that hosts have a vested interest in the community.

The city also has zoning restrictions, especially in historic districts, and adheres to occupancy limits. These regulations aim to maintain the character and integrity of Atlanta's neighborhoods while allowing for short-term rental activity.

Does Atlanta Strictly Enforce STR Rules?

Atlanta is known for enforcing its short-term rental regulations. The city has a history of issuing fines and suspending licenses for violations. However, some hosts continue to operate despite the rules, citing financial opportunities during major events. This highlights the importance of understanding and following local regulations to avoid penalties and maintain a positive relationship with the community.

Is Atlanta Airbnb Friendly?

Compared to other cities, Atlanta has a relatively strict approach to Airbnb and short-term rentals. While the city enforces regulations, some hosts find ways to operate within the rules to capitalize on events and tourism. The balance between regulation and flexibility is a key factor in determining the overall Airbnb friendliness of Atlanta.

How to Start a Short Term Rental Business in Atlanta

  • Research local regulations and requirements. This includes understanding the zoning laws, occupancy limits, and tax obligations in Atlanta.
  • Obtain an annual rental license. This license is required for all short-term rental operations in Atlanta and must be renewed annually.
  • Notify neighbors of the short-term rental operation. This is a requirement for obtaining a rental license and helps maintain a positive relationship with the community.
  • Comply with local laws, zoning restrictions, and occupancy limits. This includes collecting and remitting required taxes and ensuring the property is properly maintained and does not disturb neighbors.
  • Consider joining local Airbnb host groups or forums for additional support and resources.

Who to Contact in Atlanta about Short Term Rental Regulations and Zoning?

For inquiries about short-term rental regulations and zoning in Atlanta, contact the Department of Planning and Community Development or the City Council's Zoning and Community Development/Human Services committees. These organizations can provide guidance and resources for navigating the short-term rental regulations in Atlanta.

What do Airbnb Hosts in Atlanta on Reddit and Bigger Pockets Think about Local Regulations?

Airbnb hosts in Atlanta have expressed mixed opinions about local regulations. Some hosts appreciate the regulations for ensuring safety and maintaining the character of neighborhoods, while others find the regulations burdensome and limiting.

A common concern among hosts is the requirement to obtain a short-term rental permit, which can be a time-consuming and costly process. Hosts must also comply with safety and health regulations, zoning ordinances, and tax obligations, which can be challenging to navigate.However, many hosts recognize the importance of regulations for maintaining the safety and well-being of guests and the community.

By adhering to these rules, hosts can contribute to the local economy while providing guests with a safe and legal place to stay.Organizations like the Atlanta Short-Term Rental Association (ASTRA) offer support and resources to short-term rental hosts in Atlanta, providing advice and guidance on compliance issues, tax obligations, and best practices.

Participating in local hosting forums or community groups can also be a great source of real-time information, advice, and support from fellow Atlanta Airbnb hosts.In summary, while some Airbnb hosts in Atlanta find the local regulations burdensome, many recognize the importance of regulations for maintaining safety, well-being, and fair competition within the lodging industry. By staying informed and proactive, hosts can navigate the regulatory landscape of rentals in Atlanta successfully.ShareRewrite

Reveal your property’s rental profitability

Buy this property and list it on Airbnb.