COVID-19 and short term rental restrictions and violations

updated 4.30.2020

Due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many states and provinces like California have issued Executive Orders to return home and shelter in place.  Florida just issued a state-wide order to cancel all short term rental and hotel stays to contain the spread.  Quebec has issued a similar provincial order.  Many municipalities have also issued notices restricting short term rental bookings in their jurisdiction to a very narrow category of uses.  The restrictions only allow for certain essential workers, homeless sheltering, or owner-occupation until the stay-at-home order is lifted.  Some guests appear to be quarantining in place at the short term rental they are stuck in.  It appears the some STRs are being used as a 30+ day long term rental as a form of shelter.  The goal of the travel restriction is simple: to maintain physical and social distancing of people to prevent the spread of this highly infectious disease and prevent more tragic deaths.

List of States/Provinces Banning Short-Term Rentals amid COVID-19*

StateSourceBan Start DateBan Lifted Date
ConnecticutCT
DelawareDE
FloridaFL
GeorgiaGA2020-04-032020-04-30
MaineME
MassachusettsMA2020-03-31
Michiganlink2020-04-242020-05-15
New HampshireNH
New JerseyNJ
South CarolinaSC
VermontVT
OntarioON2020-04-03
PennsylvaniaPA
QuebecQC
New South Wales, AustraliaNSW, Australia

List of Cities and Counties Banning Short-Term Rentals amid COVID-19*

CityCountyStateSourceBan Lift Date
Del Norte CountyCALink
South Lake Tahoe and El Dorado CountyEl Dorado CountyCALink
Humboldt CountyCALink
Marin CountyCALink
Mono CountyCALink
Monterey CountyCAlink2020-05-03 link
Newport BeachOrange CountyCALink
TruckeePlacer CountyCALink
Placer CountyCALink
Riverside CountyCALink
San Bernardino CountyCALink
Clear Creek CountyCOlink2020-04-25
Grand CountyCOLink2020-05-21 link
Wheat RidgeJefferson CountyCOLink
Ouray CountyCOlink
Pitkin CountyCOLink
Summit CountyCOLink
North Miami BeachMiami-Dade CountyFLLink
Glynn CountyGALink
Maui CountyHILink
PortlandCumberland CountyMELink2020-05-18 link
PetoskeyEmmet CountyMILink
New Buffalo, South Haven, Three Oaks, ChikamingMILink
Michigan CityMILink
Traverse CityTraverse CountyMILink
Sugar MountainAvery CountyNClink
Ocean Isle BeachBrunswick CountyNCLink
Buncombe CountyNCLink
Atlantic BeachCarteret CountyNCLink
Emerald IsleCarteret CountyNCLink2020-05-08 link
Haywood CountyNCLink
Carolina BeachNew Hanover CountyNCLink
Kure BeachNew Hanover CountyNCLink
Watauga CountyNCLink
Wilkes CountyNCLink
Cape May CountyNJLink
Atlantic CityAtlantic CountyNJLink
Brick TownshipOcean CountyNJLink
Long Beach TownshipOcean CountyNJLink2020-05-15 link
Seaside Heights BoroughOcean CountyNJLink
Douglas CountyNVLink
Niagara-on-the-LakeONLink
Deschutes CountyORLink
Clatsop CountyORLink
Hood RiverHood River CountyORLink
Lincoln CountyORLink2020-05-31 link
Hilton Head IslandBeaufort CountySCLink
Edisto BeachColleton County SClink2020-05-15
Georgetown CountySCLink
North Myrtle BeachHorry CountySCLink
Surfside BeachHorry CountySCLink
UnincorporatedHorry CountySCLink
CoppellDallas CountyTXLink
GalvestonGalveston CountyTXLink
South Padre IslandCameron CountyTXlink2020-04-25
Port IsabelCameron CountyTXLink
Page CountyVALink

*Common exemptions to these orders and guidances include allowing short term rentals for (a) essential workers staying to fight COVID-19 (b) shelters for homeless from COVID-19 (c) property owners sheltering from COVID-19 (d) individuals that may be escaping domestic violence.  Please check specifically with your jurisdiction before making a decision.

We are happy to assist all municipalities in spreading the word via our free e-blast service to all known STR operators to notify them of state and local restrictions and updates. Contact us to setup the e-blast.  Please also use the below media contacts for the STR platforms to notify them of these orders and to help comply:

Responsible Renting during COVID-19 Restrictions

Rent Responsibly has setup a resources page for STR operators that are operating legally within these restrictions.  It contains useful resources such as cleaning tips, health and safety, community support and engagement and more.

Short Term Rentals possibly violating Ban Orders

However, that has not stopped zealous travelers from trying to find ways to circumvent these restrictions and thus recklessly putting all lives in unnecessary risk.  In fact, some of the tourism may be opportunistic to access beaches, parks or mountains unencumbered by the usual crowds.  Harmari has found thousands of reviews on short term rental websites in which many guest trips have been cancelled or shortened due to COVID-19 restrictions placed on beaches, resorts, parks, and hotels.  Harmari has also found evidence that short term rentals are still being rented out to guests in spite of the above bans.  Here are some examples:

  • San Bernardino County – 1262 short-term rental listings were found still renting out, despite the COVID-19 stay home orders
  • Honolulu County – 1793 listings
  • La Quinta – 609 listings
  • Placer County – 595 listings

Harmari STR is offering its services to flag these listings for code compliance officers, tasked with enforcing the laws of the City and County for free.  Our goal is to ensure the health and well-being of all travelers, STR operators and the general public to mitigate and eliminate risk of spread of this terrible virus.  Please contact us for more information on how to obtain the list of STRs in potential violation of the COVID-19 stay-in-place orders.

COVID-19 and short term rental restrictions and violations
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