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Airbnb Rules in Georgia: Laws, Regulations, and Taxes

Airbnb Rules in Georgia: Laws, Regulations, and Taxes

When it comes to Airbnb and short-term rentals, Georgia does things a little differently! Instead of having one set of rules for the whole state, each city and county gets to decide what works best for them.

It might seem a bit complicated, but it's not as bad as it sounds. Generally, the regulations are usually pretty clear and easy to understand once you dive in.

Understanding the Landscape of Short-Term Rentals in Georgia

The state of Georgia does not have its own definition of what comprises a short-term rental. This means you will rely on the definition supplied by your city/town and/or county.

Despite the lack of state-imposed laws, all short-term rentals are required to pay state sales tax (4%) and a hotel-motel fee of $5 per night. Extended stays of over 30 nights however are exempt from the $5-per-night tax.

Cities may impose sales and other taxes of their own. Airbnb collects and remits such taxes to the relevant department.

Georgia’s Airbnb Top Cities & Their Short-Term Rental Regulations

Georgia’s Airbnb Top Cities & Their Short-Term Rental Regulations

Atlanta, GA: The heart of hospitality

In Atlanta, short-term rentals are defined as accommodations rented out for less than 30 consecutive days. Hosting here means complying with the City of Atlanta Short Term Rental Ordinance.

To welcome guests, you'll need to secure a short-term rental license from the Department of City Planning which is renewable annually. A neat aspect of Atlanta's rules is that you can hold two licenses but one must be for your primary residence.

Also, Atlanta believes in neighborly love —you'll need to inform your neighbors via certified mail about your rental. Remember, a 7% hotel-motel tax will apply to your bookings.

Market Overview (AirDNA):

Average daily rate- $200.1 Occupancy rate- 48% Annual revenue- $34.7K RevPar- $95.4

South Fulton, GA: Expanding horizons

South Fulton sees short-term rentals as accommodations for guests, not exceeding 30 consecutive days.

Hosts are required to obtain a short-term rental license, an occupation tax certificate and a business license, all of which are renewed annually by December 30th.

South Fulton also adds an 8% hotel-motel tax on short-term rentals ensuring guests contribute to the city's growth.

Columbus, GA: Charm and regulation

In Columbus, short-term rental units include any residential dwelling offered to guests for less than 30 days. Hosts need to navigate through obtaining a short-term rental permit and a business license, with annual renewals.

The city sets a cozy limit of 2 guests per bedroom plus one extra with special zoning considerations in places like the Historic District. And yes, Columbus also imposes a hotel-motel tax of 8%.

Market Overview (AirDNA):

Average daily rate- $160.7 Occupancy rate- 58% Annual revenue- $33.9K RevPar- $93.2

Sandy Springs, GA: Suburban bliss

Sandy Springs defines short-term rentals as any non-subsidized residence rented for less than 30 days. Hosting here means obtaining a permit for each rental unit and a city business license with annual renewals.

The city also mandates that parking must be contained within the property and that neighbors are informed of your Airbnb activities.

A 7% hotel/motel tax applies in addition to sales tax, underlining the city's effort to balance entrepreneurship with community interests.

Blue Ridge, GA: Mountain getaways

Blue Ridge regulates Airbnb properties under its Short-Term Vacation Rental Ordinance. Rentals are permitted only in commercially zoned areas including the Central Business District, Limited Commercial, General Commercial and Manufacturing District.

Grandfathered properties paying the hotel-motel tax can continue operations until ownership changes. Hosts need a short-term vacation rental certificate with a checklist of requirements and a modest $25 annual fee.

Taxes include a 7% sales tax, a 6% lodging tax to Fannin County, a 2% lodging tax to the City of Blue Ridge and a $5 per night hotel tax.

Market Overview (AirDNA):

Average daily rate- $315.8 Occupancy rate- 53% Annual revenue- $61.1K RevPar- $169

Roswell, GA: Historic charm

Roswell offers a bit of a puzzle with its short-term rental regulations with no clear ordinance in place.

Generally, short-term rentals might not be allowed in residential zones while bed and breakfasts can operate in the Downtown Historic Districts with proper licensing.

The city also imposes an 8% hotel-motel tax on these accommodations.

Market Overview (AirDNA):

Average daily rate- $218.7 Occupancy rate- 54% Annual revenue- $43.2K RevPar- $121.5

Rabun County, GA: Peaceful retreats

Rabun County emphasizes peace with its short-term rental regulations, requiring permits effective from January 1, 2023 and zoning within the Vacation Cottage District.

Hosts must comply with zoning, occupancy limits, noise regulations and parking regulations, all aimed at ensuring the community's tranquility isn't disturbed by short-term rentals. A local contact within Rabun County must be available for any emergencies.

Hosting with the Right Tools

While it might seem like a maze trying to keep up with the different rules in Georgia's various cities and counties, don't stress! For an easier way to manage your hosting responsibilities, consider using an all-in-one property management software like Hostaway.

From managing bookings to coordinating cleanings, analytics and communicating with guests, they’ve got you covered. Thus, allowing hosts in delivering outstanding guest experiences while easing their administrative burdens.

Short-Term Rentals in Georgia and Beyond

Although Georgia does not have a unified state legislation for short-term rentals, its local laws ensure that hosts operate responsibly contributing positively to their communities.

By staying informed about the specific regulations in your area and utilizing the right Airbnb management software, you can make hosting a stress-free and rewarding experience.

Ready to find out how Hostaway can transform your business?

Hostaway is proud to support thousands of Property Managers and Airbnb Hosts Around the world. We take pride in being Top Ranked in Vacation Rental Software Review Sites: Capterra, G2, Software Advice, Trust Pilot, to name just a few! Check out our reviews and read the Hostaway Case Studies from real successful and growing Short-Term Rental Managers!