Austin’s New Rules for Short Term Rentals

The Fight to Keep Austin Short Term Rentals Reasonable Continues

On October 18, 2012 just weeks after the Short-term Rental (STR) Ordinance went into effect, the Austin City Council amended the ordinance to significantly reduce the registration fees and approved a resolution directing the city manager to explore ways to make the registration process simpler and easier to enforce rules deviated from the intent of the ordinance, and ABoR immediately spoke out against them, advocating a reduction in fees and a simplified application process. The notification fee, which is used to notify homeowners that an STR is operating within 100 feet of their property, was reduced to $50 from $241.

On October 1, the City of Austin posted emergency short-term rental (STR) rules, creating a cumbersome and expensive registration process that confused and frustrated many homeowners who were required to make appointments with city staff in order to register or have their questions answered.

ABoR supported the STR Ordinance passed on August 2 because it called for reasonable regulation of STRs that would encourage compliance; however, the emergency ABoR will continue to advocate for reasonable regulation during the regular rule-making process, which is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2013.

To apply for an STR license, call 3-1-1 to make an appointment with City of Austin Code Compliance Department staff.

 Short Term Rental owner rules-Vacation home rental laws in Austin

Rules for all STR types :

  1. Operating license and STR information packet (provided by the City) placed in a visible common area inside of the property.
  2. Payment of HOT to the state. For information on HOT, call the City of Austin, Financial Services: Controller’s Office at 512-974-2590, then press 1, or email:
  3. 512-974-2590, then press 1, or email:
  4. Licenses valid for 12 months.

Questions Regarding Short Term Rental program in Austin Texas? Visit

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