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 Calgary. This list is not exhaustive, but it should give you a good start in understanding your local laws. We’ll continue to update this information as more becomes available.
The Calgary City Council approved changes to the Business License Bylaw, which requires a Short-Term Rental Business License to operate short-term rentals, as well as the implementation of other regulations which came into effect on February 1, 2020. Hosts are responsible for applying for a business license online or in person at city hall.
There are two kinds of business licenses:
- Tier 1: 1 to 4 rooms offered for rent.
- Tier 2: 5 or more rooms offered for rent.
Short-term rental regulations
The following rules apply to short-term rentals in Calgary:
- Hosts cannot rent a room that does not have one or more egress windows.
- Hosts cannot allow more than two adults, not including minors, per room.
- Hosts cannot allow overlapping bookings of two or more bookings for the dwelling at the same time. This means a host cannot rent out separate rooms to separate guests under separate reservations but can rent out multiple rooms as part of one guest reservation.
- Hosts must include the business license number in any advertising for the short term rental.
- Hosts must post the name, phone number, and email address (in a conspicuous location) of an emergency contact person who can be reached 24 hours a day.
- Hosts must keep a record in English and in an electronic form that is satisfactory to the Chief License Inspector. Hosts must keep permanent records for each transaction and provide it to the Inspector upon demand. The record must include:
- Full name and email address of a paid guest
- Duration of their stay
The province of Alberta announced that it would require vacation rental Hosts to collect the tourism levy. This is not yet in effect, and more information will be available soon.
Other contracts and rules
As a Host, you need to understand and abide by other contracts or rules that bind you, including leases, co-op rules, HOA rules, or other rules established by tenant organizations. You should be able to find out more by contacting your housing authority (such as a community council) or landlord. Your lease (or other contract) might also have specific details.
How to apply for a Short-Term Rental Business License:
- Visit the Short-Term Rental Business License Portal.
- Create an account in the portal and follow the City’s instructions to fill out your information. You’ll need to provide:
- Personal information: full name, email address, phone number.
- Listing information: the address, number of bedrooms, and intended use (entire space, private room).
- Pay the non-refundable application fee:
- Tier 1: $100CAD per property.
- Tier 2: $172CAD per property (plus $104CAD fire inspection fee)
- Submit your application and wait for the City’s approval.
- Tier 2 properties require fire inspection before approval will be granted.
- Once you receive your registration approval, you are required to return to your listing’s Regulations page to update your registration details.
Adding registration details to your listing(s)
The law requires all Hosts to display their registration number on their listing. To add this number to your listing, go to Listings, select the listing you want, and add the number under Regulations.
Our commitment to your community
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.
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