Short Term Rental Law in Washington State

Short Term Rental Law in Washington State

Each year more and more travelers move away from traditional hotels and resorts, spending their vacation days in residential settings by booking short-term rentals. Over the last 5 years, state legislatures have evaluated a variety of bills designed to bring this unregulated industry into conformity with existing statutes. The overwhelming goal is to ensure the safety of visitors, maintain the quality of neighborhoods and support the municipal tax base.

With the signing of House Bill 1798, Washington joined California, Colorado and Hawaii in adding legal framework to the 2019 state statutes.

Washington now requires short term rental operators to:

  • supply a point of contact to assist guests during their stay
  • place highly visible documentation in the rental including the rental address
    • emergency services contact information
    • floor plan with emergency exits and escape routes
    • occupancy limit
    • operators contact information
  • meet carbon monoxide alarm requirements
  • maintain a minimum of $1 million liability insurance on the rental unit
  • pay local lodging tax
  • remit local, state and federal taxes
  • register with the state Department of Revenue

This bill goes into effect July 27, 2019, 90 days after the close of the 2019 state legislative session.

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