Many people ask us about the legality of Airbnb in St. George, Utah, and the answer is often disappointing. St. George Utah enforces strict vacation rental laws that can result in substantial fines and legal trouble for homeowners who attempt to list their properties on platforms like Airbnb or VRBO without proper adherence to regulations.
Vacation Rentals and Zoning in St. George, Utah
In St. George, short-term residential rentals are generally prohibited in residential zones, mobile home zones, agricultural zones, and residential plan development zones. There are exceptions, primarily related to planned development zones, which include communities with over a hundred units, offering amenities like golf courses, tennis or pickleball courts, and pools with clubhouses. Examples of such exceptions include popular areas like Sports Village and Las Palmas in the Green Valley region.
Another limited exception allows short-term rentals in residential areas, but the criteria are stringent. Homeowners can host Airbnb guests if their lot size exceeds two acres, they secure written consent from all neighbors within 300 feet, obtain a business license, and meet strict parking requirements. However, it’s doubtful that every Airbnb host in the area complies with these rules.
Neighboring Areas with More Lenient Rules
For those interested in vacation rentals, it’s worth exploring neighboring areas like Hurricane, Washington, Santa Clara, and Ivins. These cities have more relaxed short-term rental laws and even communities designed specifically for vacation rentals. Pending statewide legislation, House Bill 0253, may further change the landscape of short-term rentals in Utah.
Hurricane City, Utah: Hurricane City allows short-term rentals in residential zones but with a cap of 48 rentals for the entire city and a waiting list for permits. This waiting list is very long. Several communities, such as Elim Valley, Dunes at Sand Hollow, and Copper Rock, are zoned for vacation rentals.
Washington City, Utah: Washington City does not permit short-term rentals in residential zones, and code enforcement monitors Airbnb listings. However, this may change if new legislation passes. Some vacation rental communities, like Freedom Village and those in Coral Canyon, can be found here.
Santa Clara City, Utah: Santa City also restricts short-term rentals in residential zones and monitors Airbnb listings to enforce restrictions. Popular vacation rental communities include Paradise Village, Arcadia, and Ocotillo Springs.
Owning a Vacation Rental in Southern Utah
While local regulations may seem daunting, many cities have been allowing large vacation rental communities to thrive. These communities often offer attractive amenities like water parks, pickleball courts, and playgrounds, giving your vacation rental an edge over traditional homes. Furthermore, homes within these communities are zoned for vacation rentals, providing peace of mind for property owners.”