You can rent your home or a room in it for short periods. This short-term renting is considered limited lodging.
You can rent property as limited lodging for fewer than 30 days at a time. You also need to meet certain requirements and limitations.
Property owners and their agents can apply.
Where and when
You can apply online using eCLIPSE.
If you need help filing your application online, you can schedule a virtual appointment.
You need an appointment to visit the Permit and License Center in person.
Permit and License Center
1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
MSB, Public Service Concourse
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Office hours: 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday
Offices close at noon on the last Wednesday of each month.
Commercial Activity License
You need a Commercial Activity License to rent your home as limited lodging. You do not need a Rental License, however you do need a Limited Lodging Operators License.
You need a Zoning Permit for limited lodging to rent your home for up to 30 consecutive days to any one person or group.
You need a Zoning Permit for Visitor Accommodation:
- To rent your home for stays of 30 days or fewer.
- If the property is not your primary residence.
Refer to the Limited Lodging FAQ for more information.
- Smoke alarms must be installed:
- In each bedroom.
- In the hallway in the immediate vicinity of the bedrooms.
- On each floor of the home, including basements.
- Carbon monoxide alarms must be installed:
- Within 15 ft. of the entrance to every bedroom or within 15 ft. of a bed in sleeping areas if there isn’t an enclosed bedroom.
- Centrally on a wall or the ceiling, but not directly in front of a door to a bathroom or within 5 ft. of a cooking appliance.
- Under the installation requirements for smoke alarms if they are combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.
- You can’t post signs for lodging on your home.
- The home can’t be occupied by more than three people (including the owner and renters) who aren’t related by blood, marriage, life partnership, adoption, or foster-child status.
- You cannot change your house so that it no longer resembles a private residence.
Information you must provide your renters
- Renters are only allowed to have guests between the hours of 8 a.m. and midnight.
- You must tell renters the trash and recycling collection days and any trash disposal rules and regulations. You must provide proper trash containers for renters.
- Excessive noise is prohibited and violators are subject to fines and penalties.
- The owner or their designee must provide contact information to the renters. The contact person must handle any complaints from the renters.
Residents conducting short-term rentals must keep records for at least one year that show:
- That the home remained their primary residence.
- The dates the home was rented.
- The number of renters.
City Hotel Tax
The host or operator must pay the City of Philadelphia Hotel Tax monthly. The tax is 8.5 percent of the amount received through renting.