New short-term rental rules in Greensboro, North Carolina, go into effect January 1
- Nov 7, 2023 | Jennifer Sokolowsky
Under the ordinance, short-term rentals are defined as being rented for no more than 30 days. All short-term rental operators must apply for a zoning permit, which must be posted on the property and on any listings or advertisements. Permits aren’t transferable, so new owners or managers must apply for a permit within 30 days of a change.
Short-term rental properties are divided into two categories:
- Homestay Short Term Rentals involve the rental of only a portion of available bedrooms in a residential property. The host must use the property as their primary residence and be on-site during the rental.
- Whole House Short Term Rentals involve the rental of an entire residence for a fee for a minimum of two nights. If the residential property is not the host’s primary residence, the host must identify a local operator (with a local contact) and provide their contact information to the city. Hosts of Whole House Short Term Rentals must live in Guilford County or a directly adjacent county.
The ordinance places some limits on short-term rental density within the city. The rules require short-term rentals to be separated from other STRs by a minimum of 750 feet, as measured from property lines. In multi-family buildings, STRs are allowed to make up no more than 25% of the total units in the building, or one unit, whichever is greater.
The city may revoke an operator’s short-term rental zoning permit if there are two or more verified violations of any city ordinance on the premises within a 365-day period or if the owner/operator is charged with a criminal offense on the premises.
The law also specifies occupancy limits of a maximum of two adults per rented bedroom and prohibits publicly announced or promoted events that involve more than twice the number of guests.
More than 600 short-term rentals are operating within Greensboro, according to city estimates.
Complying with short-term rental lodging tax rules in Greensboro
In North Carolina, short-term rentals are subject to state and local sales tax, administered by the North Carolina Department of Revenue. Greensboro STR operators are also subject to Greensboro and Guilford County room occupancy taxes, which are administered locally. Short-term rentals are defined as reservations of fewer than 90 continuous days for tax purposes.
North Carolina requires short-term rental marketplaces such as Airbnb and Vrbo to collect and remit state and local sales and occupancy taxes on behalf of all short-term rental owners.
Hosts do not need to register with the state or file lodging tax returns if all their transactions are made through a marketplace. However, operators are responsible for remitting taxes to the state if lodging taxes aren’t being collected and paid on their behalf, such as when guests book directly with the host rather than through a marketplace.
Avalara MyLodgeTax can help vacation rental hosts automate and simplify lodging tax compliance on the local and state level, including tax registration and filing. For more on vacation rental lodging taxes in North Carolina, see our state vacation rental tax guide. If you have tax questions related to vacation rental properties, drop us a line and we’ll get back to you with answers.