Customer story

Duvet uncovers a competitive edge with MyLodgeTax

Results

Increased compliance
Tax expertise
Enabled growth

Summary

Results

  • Increased compliance
  • Tax expertise
  • Enabled growth
  • Cost savings
  • Customer satisfaction

Tax challenges

  • Tax complexity
  • Compliance risk
  • Process inefficiency
  • Manual costs
  • Company growth


Products used

Avalara MyLodgeTax
Prepares and files lodging tax returns and remits tax payments for short-term rental owners and managers.


Benefits

  • Increased confidence in compliance with state, county, and city tax authorities
  • Trustworthy reputation in the local business community
  • Smoother process for internal teams and property owners
  • Improved growth potential and revenue

Industry type

Lodging
Simplify lodging tax compliance, whether you rent out a single property or operate a hospitality chain.

Company overview


Customer
Duvet

Industry
Lodging

Tax type
Lodging tax

Based in charming Charleston, South Carolina, Duvet manages more than 200 local boutique and luxury short-term rental properties, more than 65 executive long-term rentals, and a castle on Sullivan’s Island, often used by TV and film production crews. Duvet offers comprehensive services — everything from reservations to cleaning and inspections, concierge services to interior decorating — meeting the full range of needs for property owners. 

 

Tax challenges


Accommodations taxes are applied at the state, county, and city level, using a manual, paper-based process. Many property owners were collecting the taxes but not remitting them reliably. “It’s a very tedious, manual process … one that our property owners didn’t always find easy to comply with,” says Duvet CEO and Founder Taylor Gates. 

Duvet takes responsibility for calculating, collecting, and remitting all applicable lodging taxes to local and state governments. “We wanted to prove that short-term rentals are great for the local economy,” says Taylor. “There’s a lot of data showing that the money from short-term rentals stays here, while the money from the big hotels leaves the city. And we wanted to make sure that the tax revenues were going to the right places.”

Why Avalara?


Taylor knew an automated solution could be the key to ensuring compliance, not to mention saving hours of time and paperwork. But he was concerned about outsourcing the tax function in the midst of Duvet’s rapid growth.

“The folks at Avalara gave us the right pricing model, and have remained flexible as we’ve grown, even as the COVID-19 pandemic affected our business,” he acknowledges. 

Avalara MyLodgeTax served as the tool Taylor needed to ensure compliance. “As soon as we found out about MyLodgeTax, we sent a newsletter to our property owners telling them that we were taking over the remitting process ourselves,” he recalls. “We made it clear that this was the only way we would do business going forward.”

Customer
Duvet

Industry
Lodging

Tax type
Lodging tax

Tax challenges

  • Tax complexity
  • Compliance risk
  • Process inefficiency
  • Manual costs
  • Company growth

Products used

Avalara MyLodgeTax
Prepares and files lodging tax returns and remits tax payments for short-term rental owners and managers.

 


Benefits

  • Increased confidence in compliance with state, county, and city tax authorities
  • Trustworthy reputation in the local business community
  • Smoother process for internal teams and property owners
  • Improved growth potential and revenue

Industry type

Lodging
Simplify lodging tax compliance, whether you rent out a single property or operate a hospitality chain.

“Avalara is great to work with, and they have been since the beginning. Reporting, filing, and remitting at every jurisdictional level — and for every property — is a smooth, reliable process. And we can add new properties in minutes, applying the correct rates and licensing requirements.”

Taylor Gates
Founder and CEO

“Avalara is great to work with, and they have been since the beginning. Reporting, filing, and remitting at every jurisdictional level — and for every property — is a smooth, reliable process. And we can add new properties in minutes, applying the correct rates and licensing requirements.”

Taylor Gates
Founder and CEO

Results


“Avalara is great to work with, and they have been since the beginning,” Taylor says. “Reporting, filing, and remitting at every jurisdictional level — and for every property — is a smooth, reliable process. And we can add new properties in minutes, applying the correct rates and licensing requirements.” 

Since implementing MyLodgeTax, Duvet has saved an estimated eight hours per month (and lots of paper) in the remitting process, all while ensuring property owners are complying with applicable tax laws. As a result, the company’s relationships with state, county, and local tax authorities have strengthened.

Compliance also provided Duvet with an unexpected competitive advantage. “Some of our competitors got into trouble because they weren’t doing it correctly,” says Taylor, “so some of their properties came to us because they knew they could trust us. And because the city knows we are committed to being great corporate citizens, they often recommend Duvet to prospective visitors.” 

Perhaps the greatest benefit, in Taylor’s view, is the impact his decision has had on Duvet’s reputation, and on his own. “It’s really important to us when we engage with the business owners and civic leaders of Charleston that we have a reputation for integrity,” he says proudly. “They know we’re a company that really does care.”

 

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