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Scottsdale requires short-term rental hosts to provide contact info

  • Dec 3, 2019 | Jennifer Sokolowsky

Emergency contact form

Short-term rental hosts in Scottsdale, Arizona, are now required to provide the city with contact information for someone who can be reached in case of complaints or an emergency. The City Council passed the new ordinance in late September and it went into effect in late October.

A state law passed this spring gave municipalities the power to require this type of contact information from short-term rental hosts. This measure amended a state law passed in 2016 that prohibited cities from regulating short-term rentals. Before the 2016 law, Scottsdale had banned rentals under 30 days.

The state’s tight rein on local control of vacation rentals has become controversial as the number of short-term rentals has grown, especially in cities such as Phoenix, Scottsdale, Sedona.

Now the issue is going to the state Legislature. Representatives Isela Blanc of Tempe and Aaron Lieberman of Paradise Valley have introduced a bill for the upcoming Arizona legislative session that would repeal the 2016 law to allow municipalities to make their own short-term rental rules.

Short-term rental “party houses” are a flash point in the effort to overturn the 2016 law. While the state law passed this spring allowed cities to ban special events at residences that would normally require a permit, such as large parties, Governor Doug Ducey said this summer that the issue might be revisited in the Legislature after hearing residents’ complaints about party houses. However, Ducey opposes the proposed bill, as do Airbnb and Expedia Group, the parent company of HomeAway and Vrbo.

Airbnb recently vowed to crack down on party houses across its 7 million listings worldwide, after five people were shot and killed at a Halloween party in Orinda, California.

Meanwhile, Scottsdale has adopted a “nuisance parties” ordinance that allows police officers to issue civil citations for unruly gatherings at any residence, including short-term rentals. Fines are $250 for the first penalty, $1,000 for the second, and $1,500 for a third offense. 

Vacation rental operators are also required by state law to have a current transaction privilege tax (TPT) license before offering up a short-term rental to guests. That license number must be included in all ads.

Hosts that break these rules face fines of $250 for a first offense and $1,000 for a second. The state Department of Revenue may also issue fines of up to $1,500 to short-term rental hosts who receive citations from a city or county for violating vacation-rental use laws.

MyLodgeTax can help short-term rental operators comply with Arizona lodging tax registration, collection, and filing requirements. See our Arizona Vacation Rental Tax Guide for more on lodging tax in the state, and if you have tax questions related to Arizona properties, drop us a line and we’ll get back to you with answers.

Lodging tax rates, rules, and regulations change frequently. Although we hope you'll find this information helpful, this blog is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal or tax advice.
Avalara Author
Jennifer Sokolowsky
Avalara Author Jennifer Sokolowsky
Jennifer Sokolowsky writes about tax, legal, and tech topics. She has an extensive international background in journalism and marketing, including work with The Seattle Times, The Prague Post, Avvo, and Marriott.

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