San Francisco Regulations

Regulations

To become a short-term rental host in San Francisco, you have to be the permanent resident of the property being registered. For people who have just recently started to live at the property, you have to live there at least 60 days before you apply to be a host. If your property is a multiple residential unit, then you must be a permanent resident for at least 275 nights per year.

To be a legal host, you must:

  • Be registered with the San Francisco Office of the Treasurer & Tax Collector
  • Certificate from the Office of Short-Term-Rentals
  • Have property liability insurance
  • Resole any code violations
  • Property doesn't go over the group housing limits

If you have an application pending, no city complaints against the property, and reside in a dwelling unit, then you can host the short-term rental. If the application is denied, then all short-term rental hosting must cease.

For more information, visit the City of San Francisco website.


Licenses

To run a short-term rental, you must register as a business and become a certified host.

To receive a Business Registration Certificate you will need:

  • Business Name ( this can be your name, street name, street address or something made up)
  • Business Tax ID (click yes when asked if the business is involved with short-term rentals, Yes for transient occupancy tax, and NO for utility users tax)
  • Business Start Date
  • Legal Structure ( Don't choose exempt)
  • Ownership Names and Addresses
  • Location Information
  • Email address
  • Payment Information (can pay with credit/debit or an electronic check)
  • Business Type (choose accommodations)

You can find the application here!

To become a certified host, you will need to have:


Fines and Fees

If you are not certified with the Office of Short-Term-Rentals or registered with the San Francisco Office of the Treasurer & Tax Collector, then you are subjected to penalties.

Violations of any of the short-term rental laws can have penalties of at least $484 per day in violation. Repeat violations can be subjected to larger penalties and even criminal penalties.

To read more about complaints and the fines that go with them, visit the website.

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