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When deciding whether to become an Airbnb host, it is important for you to understand the laws in your city or county. As a platform and marketplace we do not provide legal advice, but we want to give you some useful links that may better help you understand relevant laws and regulations in Sacramento. This list is not exhaustive, but it should give you a good start in understanding your local laws. If you have questions, contact the Sacramento Community Development Department or Department of Finance, or consult a local lawyer or tax professional.
Information is specific to the City of Sacramento
Different rules may apply to other cities and towns near Sacramento, in unincorporated Sacramento County, and beyond. If you live in another city or town but outside the City of Sacramento’s borders, please contact your local city administrator or planning department for more information.
Short-term rental ordinance and requirements
Sacramento’s short-term rental ordinance went into effect on February 18, 2016. The ordinance allows hosts to offer a primary and secondary residential dwelling unit for stays of 30 days or less with a short-term rental permit.
Here's how you get started:
Step 1: Check your eligibility
Anyone who hosts short-term stays (30 consecutive nights or less) in the City of Sacramento is required to register their short-term rental with the City.
Long term stays, hotels, and motels are exempt from registering as short-term rentals. If your listing is exempt, you don’t need to register, but you will still need to claim an exemption through Airbnb to keep hosting.
If one or more of your properties are not eligible as a short-term rental, you can switch to long-term stay, which in the City of Sacramento is defined as 31 or more consecutive nights.
Step 2: Get a short-term rental permit
The application is available here. The initial application fee is $230.
Send your application and payment to:
City of Sacramento
915 I Street, Room 1201
Sacramento, CA 95814
After the city processes your application, you’ll receive your Short-Term Rental Permit. This process could take a few weeks.
Permits must be renewed annually. The renewal fee is $160. For more information, visit the city’s short-term rental permit information page and FAQ.
Step 3: Add your permit number to your listing
Next, you’ll need to add your permit number to your Airbnb listing to your listing to finalize your registration with the city.
Business Operations Tax Certificate. Hosts are required to pay Sacramento’s annual business operations tax which is currently $54. The online business tax application is available here.
Transient Occupancy Taxes. Guests who book Airbnb listings that are located in Sacramento, CA will pay the following tax as part of their reservation:
- Sacramento Transient Occupancy Tax: 12% of the listing price including any cleaning fees, for reservations 30 nights and shorter. For detailed information, please visit the City of Sacramento Transient Occupancy Tax website.
- How does occupancy tax collection and remittance by Airbnb work?
Secondary residence rental cap
There is no limitation to the number of days you can host if the listing is your primary residence (i.e. the permittee resides in the unit for at least 184 nights during the calendar year). Hosts that do not meet the primary residence definition cannot rent for more than 90 days in any calendar year without obtaining a conditional use permit. Additional information is available here.
The ordinance also prohibits hosts from renting to more than 6 guests at a time and requires hosts to maintain a rental registry for a three-year period. Please review the ordinance for additional rules and regulations.
It is also important to understand and follow other contracts or rules that could apply to your home, such as leases, timeshare ownership rules, condo board or co-op rules, HOA rules, or rules established by tenant organizations. Please read your lease agreement and check with your landlord if applicable.
We are committed to working with local officials to clarify what these rules mean in the context of the sharing economy, and helping them understand how Airbnb benefits our community. Where needed, we will continue to advocate for changes that will allow regular people to rent out their homes.
Need additional help?
Contact the City of Sacramento Finance Department by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at (916) 808-8500.
Last Updated: November 30, 2020
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