When deciding whether to become an Airbnb host, it's important for you to understand the laws in your city. As a platform and marketplace we do not provide legal advice, but we want to provide some useful links that may help you better understand laws and regulations in Berkeley, CA. This list is not exhaustive, but it should give you a good start in understanding your local laws. If you have questions, contact the Department of Planning and Development or other city agencies directly, or consult a local lawyer or tax professional.
- Municipal Code. The Berkeley Municipal Code regulates uses in Berkeley neighborhoods. You should consult Titles 22 and 23 of the Municipal Code to see if your listing implicates any zoning requirements or use definitions. Important definitions include "accessory dwelling unit," "boarding house," "bed and breakfast establishment," "dwelling unit," "household," "rental of rooms," "residential hotel," and "tourist hotel." Berkeley also regulates converting some dwelling units to a different use.
- Rent Control. Berkeley has a complicated rent control program. If you live in or own a rent-controlled property, you should read Berkeley's rules and regulations carefully. A helpful guide can be found here.
- Business Registration and Annual License Fee. Some residential rental properties are required to be registered with the City of Berkeley and pay an annual license fee. More information is available here.
- Transient Occupancy Tax. Berkeley assesses transient occupancy taxes on hotels, motels, and other short-term rentals. A "short-term rental" is defined as a guest stay of less than 30 days. More information about the transient occupancy tax is available at the City's government page.
- Other Rules. It's also important to understand and follow other contracts or rules, such as leases, 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 help 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 own homes.
Last updated: October 17, 2014