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LEGAL REQUIREMENTS FOR VACATION RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS IN FLORIDA

Updated: Feb 23



Florida’s allure, characterized by its superb climate, stunning beaches, culinary delights, and distinctive local culture, continues to captivate individuals from across the globe. Consequently, the Sunshine State attracts a higher influx of residents and short-term renters compared to many other states in the United States.


The surging demand for accommodations in Florida has sparked significant interest in short-term rentals, offering individuals an alternative to conventional hotels by providing unique local experiences at affordable prices. This burgeoning demand has reverberated throughout the local real estate market, creating notable shifts in the industry.


Traditional year-long leases have encountered challenges when competing with the burgeoning short-term rental sector. In response, endeavors have been made to regulate the short-term rental market in Florida. These regulations serve the purpose of ensuring safety and fostering fair competition. Whether you are a property owner seeking to rent out your property on a short-term basis or a property management company representing short-term rentals, compliance with Florida’s regulations governing short-term rentals is vital.



Current Regulatory Landscape for Short-Term Rentals in Florida


Staying abreast of the latest regulations pertaining to short-term rentals in Florida poses a common challenge for property owners. The complexity and abundance of these regulations can be overwhelming. Nonetheless, it is imperative for property owners to maintain a comprehensive understanding of the legal requirements associated with short-term rental activities in Florida.


Airbnb, a leading platform for short-term rentals, has faced regulatory measures in numerous cities across the United States. These regulations primarily stem from the significant impact Airbnb has had on real estate pricing and consumer safety. While Airbnb presents an innovative and appealing concept for short-term rentals in Florida and worldwide, it is important for property owners to understand and comply with the specific requirements within the state.


Building Rules and Restrictions


Luxury buildings often have reservations about accommodating short-term tenants who may disrupt the experience of their long-term residents. Given Florida’s desirable weather, visitors may be inclined to host louder parties or engage in activities that can disturb neighbors.


Before considering a building for your short-term rental, it is crucial to verify whether the building permits such rentals. Violating these rules may result in fines for consistently hosting short-term rentals within the building. It is worth noting that while some buildings may not allow Airbnb specifically, they may permit longer-term leases of around six months to more serious clients.


Understanding the rules of your building will help you develop the most effective strategy for your short-term property rental.


Long-Term Vacation Rentals


Generally, local and state governments in Florida demonstrate a more favorable stance toward long-term vacation rentals, which often involve higher deposits and resemble traditional year-long leases. In Florida, various companies provide property owners with opportunities to find long-term vacation tenants, typically charging a commission fee for tenant search and screening services.


It is crucial to determine whether a license is required for long-term vacation rentals based on the specific regulations of the local county. Additionally, property owners should verify whether their building or community permits additional tenants in non-traditional year-long lease arrangements.


Taxation Implications for Short-Term Rentals in Florida


Florida’s favorable tax environment makes it an attractive destination for investors, particularly those seeking to lower their tax burdens, often from states like New York. As a result, many investors turn to Florida real estate as a means of achieving tax advantages.


However, property owners in Florida need to be aware of the taxation implications when renting out their primary residence for short-term vacation rentals, as it can potentially impact their homestead tax exemption. If a property is leased for more than 30 days in a calendar year, there is a risk of losing the homestead tax exemption.


Additionally, short-term rentals are subject to sales tax obligations, and the property owner is required to collect and remit these taxes to the Florida Department of Revenue. In some cases, tourism development taxes may also be applicable, with the earnings distributed to the county where the property is located.


Considerations for Property Management Commissions


Florida has established protections against unethical practices by property management companies. When selecting a property management company to represent their property to short-term tenants, property owners should exercise caution.


There have been instances of scams involving property management commissions or unpaid deposits. To mitigate risks, property owners should use trusted forms, seek personal referrals, and interview multiple prospective companies before making a decision. By conducting thorough research, property owners can find reputable property management companies that can help maximize profits from their short-term vacation rentals in Florida.


Staying Abreast of Florida’s Short-Term Rental Rules


It is crucial for property managers and owners to stay informed about the latest short-term rental regulations in Florida, as laws can change frequently and significantly. Remaining vigilant and proactive in understanding and complying with these regulations is essential to avoid hefty fines or license suspensions.


While certain proposals, such as the recent bill on regulating Florida short-term rental zoning, may have been postponed or withdrawn, it is important to educate oneself on both current and potential future rules.



At Siven Rentals, we are dedicated to providing comprehensive support and guidance for individuals interested in purchasing a home, home for rent, and establishing it as a vacation rental.


Our team is committed to assisting you at every stage, from the initial purchase process to ongoing management and success of your rental property. We strive to equip you with the necessary resources and expertise to maximize your venture’s potential.


Whether you are exploring the possibilities or ready to take the next steps, we invite you to visit our website for detailed information on our services. Alternatively, you can contact us directly at 813-563-0842 to begin your journey towards a prosperous vacation rental experience.

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