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Short-Term Rental Regulations & Licensing in Denver

The City and County of Denver requires hosts to obtain a license in order to offer a short-term rental (STR) in their primary residence for fewer than 30 days.

Before You Begin

  • You must be a legal resident of the United States.
  • The property must be your primary residence.
  • If you do not own the property, you must obtain written permission from the landlord or owner.
  • Verify that short-term rentals are allowed in your HOA, if applicable.
  • Check with your insurance carrier to ensure that your rental is covered. Many platforms, such as AirBnb, offer insurance that fulfills this requirement.

Get a Short-Term Rental License in 3 Easy Steps

You must apply for and renew your STR Business License online:
  • For assistance, see our step-by-step guide or call 720.913.1311
  • You may renew your license up to 60 days prior to the expiration date.
  • The annual fee is $25.  All renewals must be submitted online by logging back into your account.
  • Late fees will be assessed for renewing after your license has expired.

    **Safari users follow these browser set-up instructions before beginning your application**

You must list your short-term rental Business File Number (BFN) on all advertisements, including Airbnb, VRBO, and all other online listings.

  • Your business license number is the same as the “Business File Number” on the face of your license. The format is “2016-BFN-XXXXXXX” or "2017-BFN-XXXXXXX"
  • Are you an Airbnb host? Learn how to post your business license number by visting the Denver help page.
  • If your number is in the format of 17TMP-XXXXXX or 16TMP-XXXXXX then your application has not been submitted.  Please log back into the Application, click "My Licenses", and finish where you left off.

Now That Your Short-Term Rental is Licensed...

  • You must provide a rental packet with applicable city rules and restrictions, as well as pertinent unit safety information to guests upon each booking.  Check out our Rental Packet Template to get started!
  • You must maintain general liability insurance to protect against property damage / bodily injury.  Many platforms provide insurance that fulfills this requirement.
  • Your STR must have an operable smoke detector, carbon monoxide detector and fire extinguisher in the unit at all times.

a.    Application and renewal fee for a Lodger's Tax ID License through the Treasury Department will be $50 every 2 years.

b.    Application and renewal fee for an STR Business License through the Department of Excise and Licenses will be $25 annually.  Renew online by logging back into your account, clicking on "My Licenses", then clicking on your Business File Number (BFN) to renew.

c.    Fines for advertising without displaying the STR Business File Number in the listing will be subject to the existing Administrative Citation process (up to $999 per incident).

d.    Fines for operating without an STR Business License will be subject to the existing Administrative Citation process (up to $999 per incident). 

Our payment portal for Administrative Citation fines and appeal fees is currently down.  Please pay by mailing in a check (made payable to the Manager of Finance) to 201 W Colfax Ave. Dept 206 Denver, CO 80202, or by coming in-person to the Cashiering Office on the 2nd Floor of the Webb Building.

If you believe you received a fine in error you may submit an Appeal Request Form to  Appeal requests will not be processed until the non-refundable appeal request fee of $100 is received.  

a.    Enforcement consists of routine compliance monitoring (tracking unlicensed advertisements) combined with complaint-based investigations through Excise and Licenses inspectors.

b.    The Director of Excise and Licenses may enter a summary suspension order for the immediate suspension of any STR license pending further investigation through a show-cause hearing which could lead to revocation of the STR license. 

c.    Rules governing Excise and Licenses Administrative Citations

Want to learn more about Short-Term Rentals?

Download our FAQs (PDF) or

Questions? Contact Us

Issues with a Short-Term Rental?  Submit a Complaint Form to to have an Inspector investigate an STR.

Received an Administrative Citation? Fines can be paid by mailing in a  check or coming in-person to the Cashier's Office at the Webb Building, 201 W Colfax Ave.  Download an Appeal Request Form if you believe you received the Citation in error. 

Download our FAQs (PDF) to learn more or  Visit Our FAQ Page »

Keep updated on Short-Term Rentals news!

      Denver Excise & Licenses
      201 W. Colfax Ave. Dept. 206
      Denver, CO 80202

      Office Hours: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday

      p. 720.913.1311 | f. 720.865.2882

Questions, comments, concerns?
Email us at:

Advisory Committee

The Short-Term Rental Advisory Committee meets regularly to provide guidance and recommendations to Excise and Licenses on administration, enforcement, and other Short-Term Rental licensing policies.

For STRAC meeting Agendas, Minutes, and updates:

Next Meeting:
Tuesday August 22nd, 2017 from 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Wellington Webb Building
201 W Colfax Ave. Room 4.F.6 and 4.G.2
Denver, CO 80202



At the behest of a City Council committee led by Councilwoman Mary Beth Susman and in response to community interest, Denver’s departments of Excise & Licenses and Community Planning & Development proposed a new citywide licensing and enforcement system that allows short-term rentals while limiting unwanted effects on Denver’s residential neighborhoods.

The Short-Term Rental licensing ordinance underwent a thorough public process that included a public review draft, and multiple public presentations and town hall meetings in January and February of 2016. The process culminated with Denver City Council review and approval of the proposal in the spring of 2016.

Read the ordinance
Review the related zoning text amendment