Apply for a Short-Term Rental Permit

A Short-Term Rental Permit is required for each property operating as a short-term rental within City limits. To apply for a Short-Term Rental Permit, follow the step-by step-process below.

Step 1 – Register for TOT/BIA Assessments

The City requires all owners of short-term rentals operating within City limits to register each property for Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) and Santa Rosa Tourism Business Improvement Area (BIA) assessments. You will need the following information to complete the TOT/BIA registration form:

  • Business name and ownership Type (Individual, Partnership, etc.)
  • Property address;
  • Owner contact information;
  • Number of rooms available to rent; and
  • Management company name and contact information, if applicable.

To complete the registration process, go to

In addition, an owner of four or more short-term rentals within City limits is required to possess a Business Tax Certificate. Apply for that certificate here.

Step 2 – Prepare Your Application

You will need the following information and documentation to complete the Short-Term Rental Permit Application process.

  • Site (Property) Address and Assessor's Parcel Number.
  • Whether the short-term rental is Hosted or Non-hosted.
    • Hosted - A short-term rental where the host lives and sleeps in the dwelling unit or lives and sleeps in another legal dwelling unit on the same parcel throughout the short-term rental period.  Hosted short-term rentals shall be allowed only in the property’s primary residence.
      • Hosted short-term rentals may operate with an approved Short-Term Rental Permit anywhere within City limits.
    • Non-hosted- A short-term rental where the host does not live and sleep in the dwelling unit throughout the short-term rental period.
      • Non-hosted short-term rentals may operate with a Short-Term Rental Permit in the CMU, SMU, MMU, NMU, RR, R-1, PD (where not explicitly prohibited), R-2, R-3, TV-R, CO, CN, CSC, CG, and TVM zoning districts. Use the City's Find Your Zone online zoning tool to determine your zoning district. If the property is in a Planned Development (PD) zone, use the attached instructions to determine if that specific PD zone prohibits Short Term Rentals.
  • Floor Plan showing the dimensions and area (in square footage) of each bedroom, and the locations of smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms and fire extinguisher(s) (view a floor plan example) Note that any space to be used as a bedroom must meet the following minimum requirements:
    • Have a permanent provision for sleeping;
    • Be at least 70 sf in size when used for one occupant and at least 100 sf in size when used for two occupants;
    • Have no dimension of less than 7';
    • Have an emergency escape and rescue opening to the outside of the dwelling; and
    • Meet light, ventilation and heating criteria per the California Building or California Residential Code in effect at the time of the room's construction.
  • Site Plan including project name, address, north arrow, and property lines. Show all existing buildings and other on-site structures including decks, pools, fences. Show and provide dimensions for existing garage(s), driveways, and off-street parking spaces available for short-term rental use. Show the location of any proposed on-street parking that will be used to meet minimum parking requirements and the location of paved sidewalks where existing. (view a site plan example).
    • An on-street parking space must be at least 19 feet in length and located adjacent to the curb and on-site parking spaces must be at least 9 feet in width by 19 feet in length..
  • Verification of short-term rental activity during 2021 if required (i.e., rental agreement, advertisement with date, etc.). This requirement applies only to short-term rental operators who register for TOT and BIA assessments from October 7 to October 27, 2021
  • Parking Information - Number of off-street spaces available for short-term rental use and location of one available on-street parking space if used to meet parking minimum
  • Property Owner Information
  • Agent Information, if different from Property Owner
  • Local 24-hour Contact, if different from Property Owner or Agent
  • Number of bedrooms to be used for short-term rental activity
  • Transient Occupancy Tax Account Number

For questions about definitions and requirements, review our Frequently Asked Questions.

Step 3 – Submit Your Application

Applicants may submit a Short-Term Rental Permit Application by \:

  1. Online through Santa Rosa Citizen Access Portal
    • Gather the documents and information listed in Step 2
    • Go to Santa Rosa Citizen Access Portal and create an account. If you already have an account, skip to the next step.
    • In the menu at the top, click on New, then select Planning Permits
    • Select Short-Term Rental Permit
    • Use the documents and information gathered in Step 2 to complete the online application process

***Note: At this time, the City can no longer accept in-person appointments, as all in-person time slots have been allotted.
Please submit through the online portal as noted above***