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Knoxville Short Term Rental Regulation: A Guide For Airbnb Hosts

Knoxville, Tennessee

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What are short term rental (Airbnb, VRBO) regulations in Knoxville, Tennessee?

The City of Knoxville, Tennessee has established regulations for short-term rentals, including those booked through online platforms such as Airbnb and VRBO. These regulations, which went into effect in January 2018, require a permit to operate short-term rentals34. Short-term rentals are defined as properties or a portion of a property rented for less than 30 days3.

The property where the short-term rental unit is located must be the owner's principal residence, except in the instance of duplexes5. The city contracts with Host Compliance to track and identify short-term rental listings, and non-compliant property owners are subject to citation3.

Starting a Short Term Rental Business in Knoxville

Knoxville, Tennessee, requires a permit to operate short-term rentals, which are defined as properties or a portion of a property rented for less than 30 days at a time1. The City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance went into effect in January 20182.

Here are the steps to start a short-term rental business in Knoxville:

  • Familiarize yourself with the City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance: Understand the regulations and requirements for operating short-term rentals in the city1.
  • Determine if your property is eligible for a short-term rental permit: Ensure that your property meets the city's criteria for short-term rentals1.
  • Complete the Short-Term Rental Unit Application Form: This form is required to apply for a short-term rental permit in Knoxville2.
  • Submit the application and any required documents: Send the completed application and any necessary documents to the appropriate city office2.
  • Await the city's response to your application: The city will review your application and inform you of the decision2.

Short Term Rental Licensing Requirement in Knoxville

In Knoxville, Tennessee, short-term rentals (STRs) are defined as properties or a portion of a property rented for less than 30 days2. The City of Knoxville requires a permit to operate STRs, and the City's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance went into effect in January 20182. The City contracts with Host Compliance, a company that specializes in tracking and identifying STR listings, to aid in monitoring permitted properties2.

To obtain a permit for a short-term rental unit in Knoxville, follow these steps:

  • Determine eligibility: Ensure your property meets the city's requirements for a short-term rental permit1.
  • Complete the application: Fill out the Short-Term Rental Unit Application Form2.
  • Submit the application: Submit the completed application and any required documents to the City's Business License and Tax Office1.
  • Await the city's response: The city will review your application and issue a permit if your property meets the requirements1.

If you operate a short-term rental unit without the required permit, you will be in violation of the City of Knoxville's Code of Ordinances and subject to enforcement citations with civil penalties1. The City of Knoxville is employing enforcement software to aid in monitoring permitted properties1.

Required Documents for Knoxville Short Term Rentals

To operate a short-term rental in Knoxville, you will need to submit the following documents:

  • Short-Term Rental Unit Application Form: This form is used to apply for a permit to operate a short-term rental in Knoxville. It includes information about the property, the owner, and the rental unit3.
  • Short-Term Rental Unit Renewal Application Form: This form is used to renew your short-term rental permit annually. It requires updated information about the property, the owner, and the rental unit3.
  • Proof of Ownership: You will need to provide proof that you own the property where the short-term rental unit is located. This can be in the form of a deed or a property tax bill5.
  • Proof of Insurance: You will need to provide proof of insurance that covers your short-term rental property. This insurance should cover liability for accidents and damages that may occur on the property5.
  • Proof of Compliance: You will need to provide proof that your short-term rental unit complies with all local building codes and safety regulations. This may include inspections or certifications from local authorities5.

Knoxville Short Term Rental Taxes

The City of Knoxville, Knox County, and the State of Tennessee all play a role in the collection of taxes for the operation of Short-Term Rental Units. According to the City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental FAQs, due to state law regarding fire safety, the maximum occupancy of any Short-Term Rental Unit, regardless of the number of bedrooms, shall not exceed 12 people at one time, including any transients renting the unit and anyone who resides or is otherwise staying on-site1.

Owners of Short-Term Rental Units are required to pay taxes to the City of Knoxville, Knox County, and the State of Tennessee. However, specific details about the taxes, including the rates and filing and remitting processes, are not provided in the search results. For more information on the tax requirements for Short-Term Rental Units in Knoxville, it is advisable to directly contact the City of Knoxville's Business License and Tax Office at 865-215-2083 or via email at [email protected]1.

In addition, the State of Tennessee imposes various taxes on short-term rental properties, including sales tax5. Therefore, it is essential for individuals operating Short-Term Rental Units in Knoxville to be aware of and comply with the tax regulations at the city, county, and state levels.

Tennessee Wide Short Term Rental Rules

The State of Tennessee has its own set of rules and regulations for short-term rentals, which apply to all cities in the state, including Knoxville. Key points include:

  • The State of Tennessee's Short-Term Rental Ordinance went into effect in January 2019, defining some aspects of what and how local governments are allowed to regulate short-term rentals1.
  • Short-term rental properties are subject to various taxes in Tennessee, such as sales tax5.
  • The City of Knoxville contracts with Host Compliance, a company that specializes in tracking and identifying short-term rental listings, to enforce the city's short-term rental regulations3.
  • Non-compliant property owners are subject to citations and potential legal action2.
  • The City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance went into effect in January 2018, and the state's ordinance followed in January 20193.
  • Short-term rental properties need a permit to operate in Knoxville, and the city's zoning code allows them in residentially zoned districts at the owner's principal residence and in non-residential districts with permission from the owner2.
  • The City of Knoxville's Business License and Tax Office is responsible for issuing permits and renewals for short-term rental units3.

Does Knoxville Strictly Enforce STR Rules?

The City of Knoxville strictly enforces its short-term rental (STR) rules. The city's ordinance, which came into effect in January 2018, defines a short-term rental as properties or a portion of a property rented for less than 30 days at a time13. The ordinance requires a permit to operate short-term rentals, and the city contracts with Host Compliance, a company specializing in tracking and identifying short-term rental listings, to ensure compliance. Non-compliant property owners are subject to citation and other enforcement actions34.

The STR ordinance also includes legacy provisions, which state that new local regulations do not apply to a unit if it was being used as a short-term rental unit prior to the ordinance and meets certain criteria. However, any existing operations must apply for and receive a permit, and based on the zoning classification, existing operations may not be eligible for a permit45.In summary, the City of Knoxville's STR rules are strictly enforced, and the city takes measures to ensure compliance with these regulations.

Therefore, it is essential for individuals or businesses operating or planning to operate short-term rentals in Knoxville to adhere to the city's STR ordinance and obtain the necessary permit to avoid potential enforcement actions.

How to Start a Short Term Rental Business in Knoxville?

To start a short-term rental business in Knoxville, Tennessee, you must adhere to the city's regulations. The City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance, which came into effect in January 2018, requires a permit to operate a short-term rental3. The ordinance defines a short-term rental as properties or a portion of a property rented for less than 30 days at a time2. To ensure compliance and obtain the necessary permit, follow these steps:

  • Understand the Regulations: Familiarize yourself with the City of Knoxville's Short-Term Rental (STR) ordinance to understand the requirements and restrictions3.
  • Check Eligibility: Determine if your property is eligible for a short-term rental permit based on the city's zoning and property regulations.
  • Complete the Application: Obtain the Short-Term Rental Unit Application Form from the City of Knoxville's official website or the Business License and Tax Office2. Fill out the form accurately and completely.
  • Submit the Application: Once the application is complete, submit it to the appropriate city office along with any required documents and fees.
  • Await Approval: After submitting the application, await the city's response. If the application is approved, you will receive the permit to operate a short-term rental in Knoxville.

It's important to note that operating a short-term rental unit in Knoxville without the required permit is unlawful and may result in enforcement actions, including citations and civil penalties45. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure full compliance with the city's regulations before commencing operations.

Who to Contact About Knoxville STR Regulations

Contact the Knoxville Business License and Tax Office with questions about short term rental regulations and permitting:Phone: 865-215-2083
Email: strs@knoxvilletn.gov

What do Airbnb hosts in Knoxville on Reddit and Bigger Pockets think about local regulations?

The City of Knoxville has established regulations for short-term rentals, requiring a permit to operate such properties. These regulations, which came into effect in January 2018, define short-term rental units as properties rented for overnight lodging for less than 30 days at a time. In residentially zoned districts, these units are allowed at the owner’s principal residence, while in non-residential districts, they are available even if the owner does not live at the unit or has given permission to a tenant124.

The city's enforcement of these regulations is facilitated by Host Compliance, a company that specializes in tracking and identifying short-term rental listings. Property owners found to be operating short-term rentals without the required permit are subject to enforcement citations and civil penalties4.As for the sentiments of Airbnb hosts in Knoxville, specific opinions from platforms like Reddit and Bigger Pockets were not found in the search results. However, it is evident that the city has stringent regulations in place and is actively enforcing them.

Therefore, it is crucial for individuals considering or currently operating short-term rentals in Knoxville to adhere to the established permitting requirements and zoning regulations to avoid potential legal consequences.

⚡️
Reveal your property’s rental profitability

Buy this property and list it on Airbnb.