When deciding whether to become an Airbnb host, it is 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 give you some useful links that may help you better understand laws and regulations in Atlanta. This list is not exhaustive, but it should give you a good start in understanding your local laws. If you have questions, contact the City’s Planning & Community Development department or other city agencies directly, or consult a local lawyer or tax professional.
- Land Development Code. Atlanta’s Land Development Code, Part III of the Code of Ordinances, governs most land use in Atlanta. You should consult Part 16 of the Land Development Code in particular to see if your listing is consistent with any zoning requirements or use definitions. Important terms include “apartment,” “bed and breakfast inn,” dwelling unit,” “family,” “guest house,” “hotel,” “lodging unit,” “roominghouse,” “tourist home.”
- Building and Housing Standards. Atlanta has rules and regulations specifying minimum construction, design, and maintenance standards for buildings, including regulations on habitability, health, and safety. Certain regulations applicable to residential and non-residential uses may be relevant to your listing, including Appendices A to F of the Land Development Code. You can review these here. For more information, contact the Atlanta Office of Code Compliance.
- Hotel License. Atlanta requires owners and operators of hotels and similar businesses to apply for and receive a license to operate. The license is issued through the Atlanta Police Department’s License and Permit Unit. Please review Chapter 30, Article XI of the Code of Ordinances, or contact the Police Department or Office of Revenue for more information.
- Business License. Atlanta also generally requires anyone owning or operating a new business to submit an application and pay an annual tax. For new business owners, the City’s Zoning Enforcement Division will verify if the business can exist in its location. You can review rules in Chapter 30, Article III of the Code of Ordinances. A step-by-step summary of the process is available on the Department of Finance’s website.
- Taxes. Atlanta assesses hotel or motel occupancy taxes on any structure or building that is occupied by guests. Guests qualifying as a “permanent resident,” or guest stays of 30 days or more, are exempt from the tax. More information about the transient occupancy tax is available at the City's municipal code, Chapter 146. Fulton County and the State of Georgia also imposes a hotel or motel also assess a hotel or motel occupancy tax on guest stays of more than 30 days. More information can be found in the County's Tax Code and the State's Tax Code.
- Other Rules. It's also important to understand and follow other contracts or rules, such as leases, timeshare ownership rules, 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: January 21, 2015