Springfield’s Grace Period for Short Term Rentals Ends February 27

If you’re renting a short-term rental property on AirBnB or other apps, the time is running out for you to register with the city under new regulations.

The new regulations will require any property owner who rents a property for less than 30 days to have a business license and comply with other short-term rental regulations.

Any rental property that is not registered before the end of the grace period could be prohibited from being rented in the future under the ordinance’s new restrictions.

Below is more information from the city for anyone with a short-term rental or those interested in renting a property in the future:

Applications and forms for short-term rentals are now available on the City’s website at https://www.springfieldmo.gov/813/Applications-Checklists under the Short-Term Rentals heading. City Council approved regulations and definitions for short-term rental properties in the city of Springfield Jan. 28.

Any property owner who rents out their property in the city limits of Springfield for fewer than 30 days must have a business license and comply with other short-term rental regulations aimed at protecting the safety, character and quality of life in Springfield neighborhoods. Short-term stay rentals are grouped into three categories, listed below.

Owners of type 2 rentals (non-owner-occupied residence or an owner-occupied primary residence, legal accessory apartment or historic carriage house that is rented for more than 95 days in a calendar year when the owner is absent from the premises) must apply for a permit to operate their property as a short-term stay rental by Wednesday, Feb. 27 to avoid the risk of losing their ability to operate due to the density restrictions in the ordinance. The permit requires a neighborhood meeting and at least 55 percent of adjacent property owners to give consent.

Types of short-term rentals

Type 1

  • Allowed in the Single-Family Residential (R-SF) or Residential Townhouse (R-TH) districts.
  • For owner-occupied primary residences or historic carriage houses as allowed in the Zoning Ordinance.
  • Cannot be rented for more than 95 days in a calendar year when the owner is absent from the premise.
  • Must obtain an annual business license.
  • Must provide an affidavit certifying that the primary residence, legal accessory apartment or historic carriage house will not be rented for more than 95 days in a calendar year when the owner is absent from the premise.
  • No density restrictions.

Type 2

  • Allowed in the R-SF or R-TH districts.
  • For non-owner-occupied residence or an owner-occupied primary residence, legal accessory apartment or historic carriage house that is rented for more than 95 days in a calendar year when the owner is absent from the premise.
  • No limitation on the number of days that it can be rented; however, all type 2s will require a short-term rental type 2 permit. The permit requires a neighborhood meeting and at least 55 percent of adjacent property owners to give consent.
  • Must obtain an annual business license and a certificate of occupancy.
  • Density limitations: A short-term rental type 2 shall be limited to no more than one type 2 or bed and breakfast per eight residential structures on the block face in R-SF or R-TH districts. No type 2 shall be permitted on a block face with fewer than four residential structures unless an appeal is granted by City Council (i.e. 1-3: no STR; 4-8: 1 STR; 9-15: 1 STR; 16-23: 2 STR). For purposes of this section, block face shall be defined as one side of a street, from one intersection to the next, not including alleys. Residential structures’ block face shall be determined by the mailing address assigned to each.

Type 3

  • Allowed in all other zoning districts.
  • No residency requirement or limitations on the number of days that it can be rented.
  • No more than two dwelling units within a premise can be rented.
  • Must obtain an annual business license and a certificate of occupancy.
  • No density restrictions.

General provisions for all short-term rentals

All short-term rental properties shall comply with the residential occupancy requirements in the Zoning Ordinance, which requires that a dwelling unit may not be occupied by more than three unrelated persons in a R-SF or R-TH zoning district or four unrelated persons in a Low-Density Multi-Family Residential (R-LD), Medium-Density Multi-Family Residential (R-MD) or High-Density Multi-Family Residential (R-HD) districts.

Short-term rental types 2 and 3 must obtain and continually maintain a service agent business license. Licensing fees are based on gross receipts and typically range from $25 per year ($0-$10,000 in annual gross receipts) to $105 per year ($200,000 in annual gross receipts). Businesses that collect more than $200,000 in annual gross receipts are charged an additional 25 cents per $1,000. New applicants will be asked to estimate their gross receipts for the upcoming year. The figures can be adjusted accordingly when the business renews the following year, according to Licensing Supervisor Lori Stubbeman. If an annual business license is not continually obtained, the owner/business risks losing the ability to operate due to the density restrictions in type 2 and maximum dwellings in type 3.