Short Term Rental Regulations in the City of Kirkland

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    short term rental regulations Kirkland

    In October 2017, Kirkland’s City Council passed an ordinance restricting short term rentals. The following is a complete guideline for Kirkland’s short term rental regulations so that anyone can be a responsible host. This rundown should give you a good start in understanding your local laws.

    Short term rentals in Kirkland are rentals that last fewer than thirty days, as opposed to long term rentals, defined as those that last 30 days or more. The ordinance is mainly focused on single-family residences. The rules of the individual complex usually govern multifamily homes. However, any commercial transaction, including short term and long term rentals, requires a Business License from the City of Kirkland (including multifamily residences).


    Business License Requirements 


    Anyone renting a short term rental property must acquire a business license from the City and pay the applicable fees. The first step is to register with the Department of Revenue of the State of Washington. The Department of Revenue website provides helpful information on how to do so. After that, you will need to apply for a Kirkland business license. You’ll need to fill out a short term rental form for short term rentals. The Kirkland Business License website has information on how to apply for a City business license. 

    The following are the current short term rental regulations for obtaining a Business License in Kirkland:

    1. To enter into short term rentals, the property owner or an authorized agent must reside in the property as a primary residence for at least 245 days every year.
    2. For days when neither the owner nor an authorized agent is occupying the property, a property manager living within 15 miles of the residence must be identified. 
    3. The property owner must acquire a business license from the State of Washington.
    4. In addition, the property owner or an authorized agent must fill out and submit a business license application with the City. They must also pay the required costs. 
    5. The applicant must complete a declaration and sign it as part of the application. Even if the applicant is not the owner, the application must still be signed by the owner. The property retains specific responsibilities in all cases. 
    6. Property owners must pay the short term rental lodging taxes to the State of Washington.


    Aside from the Lodging Excise Tax, the City’s business licensing price (for both long term and short term rentals) is divided into two parts. They consist of a basic charge of $100 and a revenue-generating regulatory license (RGRL) fee of $105 per employee (always a minimum of one employee). The City would impose a $205 annual cost for many short term rentals. If your yearly gross profits are less than $12,000, you only need to pay the $50 registration charge, not the RGRL fee. 

    The New Business Incentive is available to new businesses. It exempts them from paying the RGRL fee for the first year of operation. 

    Kirkland does not impose a Business and Occupation tax. The State of Washington requires short term rentals to pay lodging taxes.

    Other Regulations

    As a responsible host, you must comprehend and abide by other contracts or vacation rental rules and regulations that bind you. These include leases, community rules, HOA rules, or other guidelines. Feel free to reach out to your landlord, housing authority, or community council to find out more. To get more information about other regulations, you can also visit Kirkland’s official website or contact us.