As a popular tourist destination, Evergreen, Colorado, and the surrounding foothills area has seen a rise in the number of short-term vacation rentals available on platforms like Airbnb. While hosting on Airbnb can be a great way to generate extra income, it’s important to understand the rules and regulations for short-term rentals in Evergreen. In this article, I’ll provide an overview of the regulations, permits and licenses, taxes, insurance requirements, safety regulations, and tips for successful Airbnb hosting in Evergreen, which includes both Jefferson County and Clear Creek County, depending on where your residence lies. In both of these counties Airbnb’s are considered short term rentals.
What is a Short Term Rental?
A short term rental is a type of lodging that is rented out for a brief period, typically less than 30 days. This can include apartments, homes, and even hotel rooms. The rise of the sharing economy has led to the popularity of short term rentals, particularly through platforms like Airbnb, which has revolutionized the way people travel and find accommodations. Airbnb is a platform that allows individuals to list their homes or rooms for rent, connecting travelers with hosts in a particular location. Airbnb has become synonymous with short term rentals, as it has made it easier and more accessible for people to rent out their space and for travelers to find unique and affordable lodging options.
Jefferson County's Rules + Regulations for Short Term Rentals
In general, there are a few basic requirements that all short-term rentals must comply with. These include having a valid permit, meeting certain safety and insurance requirements, and collecting and remitting the appropriate taxes.
Property must be minimum of 1 acre, meet the underlying zone district, have adequate parking, meet the requirements set for by the Wildfire Hazard Overlay District, have valid water and sanitation, have legal access, use the primary dwelling unit, be free of violations, and have no substantial detriment to the intent of the Zoning Resolution.
In order to legally rent out your home on Airbnb in Evergreen, you must obtain a permit from Jefferson County. The application process is fairly straightforward, and typically involves submitting basic information about your property and paying a fee. However, it is important to note that not all properties are eligible for short-term rental permits. For example, properties located in floodplains or in areas with high wildfire risk may not be approved for short-term rentals.
Once you have obtained a permit, you must comply with all regulations set forth by Jefferson County. This includes meeting certain safety requirements, such as having working smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and carbon monoxide detectors. Additionally, you must have liability insurance that covers your short-term rental activity. Here is a link to Jefferson County Planning and Zoning for short term rentals.
Jefferson County's Taxes and Insurance Requirements
As with any rental activity, short-term rentals in Evergreen are subject to taxes. This includes state and local sales taxes, as well as lodging taxes. Airbnb has made it easy for hosts to collect and remit these taxes, but it is your responsibility to ensure that you are collecting and remitting the appropriate amount.
In addition to liability insurance, it is also recommended that you obtain property insurance that covers your short-term rental activity. This can help protect you in the event of damage to your property or injury to your guests. It is important to review your insurance policy carefully and ensure that it covers short-term rental activity.
Clear Creek County's Rules + Regulations for Short Term Rentals
Clear Creak County puts a cap on the amount of residential units that can have short term rental permits. In any given year. No more than 4.5% of the total number of residences in unincorporated Clear Creek county can have ‘non-primary residence’ permits. If you want to get on the waiting list, you can visit Clear Creek Counties website to get more information.
Clear Creek County's Taxes and Insurance Requirements
If you are renting out a unit for less than 30-days you are required to. Collect and remit sales taxes—this will include special district taxes, applicable state, country lodging and local marketing district taxes, all state-collected local and country sales taxes.
Rental income is also taxable by the federal and state governments.
Again, it is recommended to get property insurance to cover your short-term rental property to protect you from damage or injury to your guests.
Pros and Cons of Using Airbnb
There are several potential benefits to renting out your home on Airbnb, including:
Extra income: One of the biggest advantages of renting out your home on Airbnb is the ability to earn extra income. By renting out your home, you can generate revenue that can help you pay off bills, save for a rainy day, or even go on a vacation.
Flexibility: Renting out your home on Airbnb can be a flexible way to earn extra income. You can choose to rent out your home only when you’re away, or you can rent it out year-round to generate a more steady stream of income.
Control: As an Airbnb host, you have control over who stays in your home and when. You can set your own prices, decide on your own check-in and check-out times, and establish any rules or restrictions you want.
Meet new people: Airbnb can provide an opportunity to meet new people from all over the world. As a host, you can interact with your guests and provide recommendations for local attractions and activities.
Protection: Airbnb provides protection for both hosts and guests through their Host Guarantee and Host Protection Insurance programs. These programs can provide coverage in the event of damage to your property or injury to your guests.
There are also some potential drawbacks to consider, such as:
Risk of damage: When you rent out your home on Airbnb, there is always a risk that your property could be damaged or stolen. Even if you have insurance, the process of filing a claim and getting reimbursed can be time-consuming and stressful.
Legal issues: Depending on where you live, there may be legal restrictions on renting out your home on Airbnb. For example, some cities have specific regulations on short-term rentals that you must comply with. Failing to follow these regulations could result in fines or other legal consequences.
Time commitment: Being an Airbnb host can be time-consuming, as you may need to communicate with guests, coordinate check-ins and check-outs, and manage cleaning and maintenance tasks between stays.
Safety concerns: Renting out your home to strangers can be a safety concern, especially if you’re not there to monitor who is entering and leaving your property. You may want to consider installing security cameras or other safety measures to protect your property and your guests.
Potential for negative reviews: If you receive negative reviews from guests, it could impact your ability to attract future renters. While you can’t control how guests will review your property, you can take steps to provide a positive experience and address any concerns or issues that arise.
Overall both long and short-term rentals are in high demand in Evergreen Colorado and can be a great investment vehicle. If you are thinking of buying a residential property for investment purposes don’t hesitate to reach out to me. Please keep in mind the content of this article is based on the information available through the county at the time of writing it. It it imperative to perform your due diligence and talk with the county to get the current requirements from them before purchasing any real estate.
Contact an Evergreen Colorado Real Estate Agent
Shad & Claudine Phillips – Certified Mountain Area Specialist 303-218-6926
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