Planning Department Reschedules Planning Board Presentation of Revised Zoning Text Amendment for Short-Term Residential Rentals to May 11

April 24, 2017

Short-Term Residential rental logo

Presentation to Board will be made a week later than previously scheduled and include new standards for short-term home rentals, such as Airbnb

SILVER SPRING, MDThe Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, has changed the date of its presentation about a proposed zoning text amendment (ZTA) to regulate online-advertised, short-term home rentals, such as Airbnb, Flipkey, HomeAway and VRBO. The presentation will be made on Thursday, May 11, 2017 instead of May 4, 2017. The ZTA has already been posted online for public review.

Comments and suggestions about the proposed ZTA can be sent to Gregory.russ@montgomeryplanning.org. The community will also have the opportunity to testify about the amendment at the Planning Board meeting on May 11. Once the Planning Board reviews the ZTA, it will transmit its recommendations to the County Council. Consult the Planning Board agenda for more details about meeting schedules and public testimony.

The amendment defines a short-term residential rental as a dwelling unit occupied for less than 30 days and not a bed and breakfast establishment. Applicants seeking to rent part of their homes for such a length of time must provide proof that the house is their primary residence and comply with homeowner association, condominium document or rental lease agreements. They must provide written proof that abutting and confronting neighbors have been notified of the application for a short-term residential rental.

Standards for Short-Term Residential Rentals

As proposed, the ZTA states that a property can be used as a short-term residential rental for a maximum of 90 days in a calendar year and the use must be licensed. Each license would be issued for a term of one year and renewable for additional one-year terms, subject to payment of a license fee.

Occupancy in a short-term residential rental is limited to six adult guests per night. A maximum of two overnight guests may stay in each bedroom. A record of all overnight visitors must be maintained and ready for inspection by Health and Human Services (HHS) staff.

Background on Short-Term Residential Rental Zoning Text Amendment

The County Council introduced a zoning text amendment (ZTA 16-03) in February 2016 to relax the requirements on short-term rentals. ZTA 16-03 was introduced in conjunction with Bill 2-16, which would update the licensing requirements for all transient housing, including a bed and breakfast.

After holding a public hearing on ZTA 16-03 and Bill 2-16, the County Council requested that the Planning Department reach out to county residents and stakeholders to seek additional input regarding the regulation of short-term residential rentals. As part of this effort, staff studied regulations adopted by other jurisdictions locally and nationally to collect information that could be pertinent to crafting new legislation for Montgomery County.

The Planning Department held three public meetings in 2016 to solicit community feedback about the ZTA and met with the county Departments of Permitting Services, Health and Human Services, and Housing and Community Affairs to discuss the ZTA.