Short-Term Rental Operator Guidelines

STR Operator Guidelines, Requirements & Instructions

Short-term Rental Permit Rules

Every Short-Term Rental property in League City is required to have a STR permit. Permits are issued through the COLC Building Dept and must be renewed annually. City Ordinance requires STR property owners to be fully compliant before advertising on any online STR rental platforms such as Airbnb, VRBO, Home & Away, etc.  

  • A valid STR Permit number is required to be displayed on any short-term rental platform listings. City Ordinance requires listings without a valid STR Permit number to be removed immediately. 
  • Permit Fees are double if an STR is found to be advertised without a valid permit.

Consequences for Non-Compliance 

Listing, advertising, or operating a short-term rental without an active permit is prohibited and subject to fines of up to $500. 

Failure to comply with the STR permit registration or HOT payment requirements as outlined in Ordinance 88-58 is a Class C misdemeanor offense and is punishable upon conviction by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500.00) per offense. Each day shall constitute a separate offense. Late payment penalties and interest will be assessed on all payments received after the due date. Delinquent and non-registered properties are subject to legal action.

Annual Permit Renewal 

Permits are effective from January to December and must be renewed each year by payment of the permit fee on or before December 1 for the following calendar year. Fire and Life Safety Inspections must be requested before December 31 for annual renewals.

  • The annual permit fee is not prorated for STR Permits issued during the year. Permit fees are nonrefundable. Fees are set by the City Council and shall be rendered with the application. 
  • Permit applications with no activity for 6 months will be expired and the applicant will have to reapply and pay the permit fee again.
  • STR permits are non-transferable to other owners, operators, or locations. 
  • Failure to complete the renewal process for a STR permit may result in revocation of the STR permit. If a STR permit is revoked for any reason, the operator may not reapply for such for the same property for a period of 12 months for the revocation. 

Fire and Life Safety Requirements 

Fire and life safety inspections must be completed annually as part of the STR Permitting process. 

  • All short-term rentals shall be equipped with fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and carbon monoxide detectors as required by all applicable law.
  • Every sleeping area shall have at least one operable emergency escape and rescue opening as required by all applicable law.
  • An evacuation plan shall be posted conspicuously in each permitted sleeping area.
  • Any room or sleeping area in an STR that does not comply with this section shall not be used as a sleeping area and where equipped with a door, shall remain locked at all times when the dwelling is being used as an STR. Such non-compliant sleeping area shall not be included in the maximum occupancy calculation for the STR. The owner/operator shall notify every occupant, in writing, that the non-compliant sleeping area may not be used for sleeping.
  • Each sleeping area must include at a minimum the shared use of a full bathroom.

Parking Requirements

The City requires each single-family residential dwelling to have four parking spaces. If you are living in your home while offering a room, or portion of your home for rent as a STR, as in a hosted guest experience, you will need an extra parking space for your guest. 

  • When submitting your property site plan document, indicate the location of the required parking spaces.
  • If off-site parking arrangements are made, please indicate the location and details on your application. 

Required Posting of Information 

STR Operators must post the following information in a conspicuous location in the common area of the unit. The notice must include: 

  • The maximum number of occupants.
  • Location of off-street parking and prohibition of parking on landscaped areas and yards.
  • Notice that failure to conform to the occupancy and parking requirements is a violation of the City Code and occupant or visitor can be cited.
  • Restrictions on use of outdoor facilities, such as pools.
  • Local contact person's name and 24-hour phone number.
  • Property cleanliness requirements.
  • Location of trash cans and pick-up requirements; and
  • Flooding hazards and evacuation routes.
  • Short-term Rental Permit Number
  • Hotel Occupancy Tax Registration Account Number 

Compliance with All Applicable Laws and Codes 

The owner of the property and the operator of the STR shall be responsible for compliance with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations pertaining to the use and occupancy of the subject STR, including prohibition of public nuisances and unreasonable noise. Short-term rental operators shall be responsible for informing their occupants of all relevant city codes and the occupants' liability for violation of same.

Discontinued STR Operators Must Submit Notice and Remove Listings

If you close your STR rental, you must submit an official notice to the City of League City and remove all relevant listings on online booking platforms within 30 days. Email the Convention and Visitors Bureau to ensure hotel occupancy tax reporting records are complete and confirm your business account is closed in MuniRevs. Operators found with active listings are subject to fines for illegal advertising and penalties and legal action for late hotel occupancy tax reporting.