Here are some of the ways that Airbnb regulations will be changing in DC and what landlords, as well as tenants, should be on the lookout for.


Registration Requirements 

Register the property with the city and keep track of the guests and the nights the property is leased.  This registration process allows you to legally become a short-term rental host in Washington DC. Here are the exact steps that all landlords for Airbnb properties in the city of DC should follow.


Step 1: Gather All Necessary Information 

During the application process, applicants will be asked for various information. They will need to submit all of their personal information and information about the home and the insurance they carry. This will include a Certificate of Clean Hands, insurance coverage information, attestation form, and credit or debit card to pay.


The Certificate of Clean Hands can be obtained from Mytax.DC.gov. 

  • It is a  verification process about the overall tax and revenue of your property.



  • To host property on Airbnb, one typically needs to have a minimum coverage of liability insurance that totals 250,000 dollars. This information can be submitted to the Airbnb site, in addition to the city of DC.

If the home is associated with any HOA fees, condo requirements, Co-Ops, or other neighborhood requirements, the landlord will need to complete and return a short-term/vacation rental attestation form to the city.

Landlords can also check out RentJiffy

  • RentJiffy.com is a company that will register a rental property for a fee. 


Step 2: Apply for a License 

The exact license that a landlord should apply for is either called the short-term rental endorsement or the vacation rental endorsement. If the landlord will be staying on the property while renting it out,  they’ll need the short-term rental endorsement. If they will not be staying on the property during the stay of  visitors and renters, they’ll need the vacation rental endorsement. If they plan to stay both on and off-site, they may need to apply for both endorsements.

To apply for either license you should sign up for an Access DC account (https://accessdc.dcra.dc.gov/ ) and start the application process. Landlords will be asked to enter personal information and the information about the property they will rent out. The city will typically take about one week to process your application after you pay the necessary fees, which currently stand at $104.50.


Step 3: Add DC License Number to Listing on Airbnb 

To help ensure that the property is legal and everything is up to code, a  license number should be added to the hosting site on Airbnb. Airbnb is aware of the new regulations in the city and has created a unique and designed place to display this information on their site. Airbnb has been expecting this change in law and has created a spot on their site to display information.


Step 4: Track Nights 

Another essential part of this new registration and DC regulation is for the host to track the nights that they rent out to each renter. The nights that landlords are allowed to rent out their home(s) will change depending on the type of license they have applied for.

If landlords choose to apply for the short-term rental license, in which they remain on the property, they can allow renters as often as they’d like. Therefore, they will not need to track each night the renter is on the property with the city.

If you choose to apply for the vacation rental license, landlords will need to track the nights that they have renters. 



  • Landlords can only rent out the property for 90 nights each year if they are not going to be on the property, as set by the city of DC. This means that they’ll need to keep detailed records of which nights they hosted guests so that they have proof and verification if ever needed. 
  • When a host applies for both licenses, they can host as often as they like while on the property and an additional 90 nights per year when they are off the property. 

If you have further questions about these new regulations, you can always contact the city directly using this link https://dcra.kustomer.help/contact/contactus-SkowCOjX8  This will save time and streamline the process.


Frequently Asked Questions 

The Fees

  • The fees may change slightly depending on whether you apply for one or both licenses.  The two-year license costs $105. 
  • The taxes in Washington, DC, total 14.5 percent for lodging fees. These fees should factor into  Airbnb rental costs. Double-check booking fees to ensure that these taxes are added to the account and listing.


  • Your renters will need to follow all of the rules set by your condo association, neighborhood rules, or your HOA. These rules should be posted on your Airbnb site and be easy to read for all possible renters. When these rules are posted, it will help with vetting renters and ensuring that your home is seldom under debate for following rules.


The content above is brought to you by Georgetown Realtor, Melanie Hayes with TTR Sotheby’s International Realty.  You can contact her here.