New Short-Term Rental Application

Online training videos are available for short-term rental applications.

We recommend using Google Chrome or Safari browsers to complete the online application. The application cannot be completed on a smartphone or tablet.

 

What is a short-term rental?

Often facilitated by peer-to-peer websites such as VRBO.com and AirBnB.com, short-term rentals are residential properties available for rent for a period ranging from 1 to 29 days. Pursuant to the Denver Revised Municipal Code the City and County of Denver requires hosts to get a license in order to offer a short-term rental (STR) in their primary residence, meaning the place in which a person's habitation is fixed for the term of the license and is the person's usual place of return. A person can have only one primary residence.

Basic information

Do I need a short-term rental license?

If you rent a property to guests for 1 to 29 days at one time, a short-term rental license is required. The property being rented must be your primary residence. If you are not the property owner, you will need permission from the property owner to operate short-term rentals there.

If you only rent for 30 days at a time, no license is required. This must be included in the booking calendar of any online advertisement.

 

Short-term rental FAQs and application user guides

All short-term rental applicants should start by downloading the short-term rental online application guide.(PDF, 926KB)

You can access a list of frequently asked questions about short-term rentals and application requirements.

 

Check on the status of an application

An applicant can check on the status of an application at any time through the online application portal. Download the application status check-in guide(PDF, 457KB) for step-by-step instructions.

 

   

Submit a new short-term rental application

Step 1.Before you apply

  • Read the laws, rules and regulations that apply to short-term rentals to ensure this license is right for you.
  • If you are a renter, get permission from your landlord to use the property as a short-term rental.
  • If you have an HOA, notify it of your intent to use the property as a short-term rental.
  • Verify the hosting platform (i.e. AirBnB, VRBO, etc.) provides liability insurance coverage for at least $1 million - or get your own insurance. Regardless of where you get insurance, inform your insurance carrier of your intent to use the property as a short-term rental.
  • Make sure the property is equipped with smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and a fire extinguisher. 
  • Identify a local responsible party, also known as a general manager, who can address issues at the property if you are unavailable. 
  • Put together a brochure for renters that contains information required by the short-term rental ordinance.
  • Register for a lodger's tax account.

Step 2.Watch our online training videos 

Our online training videos provide helpful and detailed overviews of the application processes. You can find the online training videos for short-term rental licenses on our Online Training Videos webpage. There are training videos that show how to register for an account, and how to complete a new application for a short-term rental from start to finish, step-by-step.

Step 3.Register for a new account 

Register for an account in Denver’s Permitting and Licensing Center

Step 4.Gather all required documents

Ensure you have all of the required documents listed below. 

Remember:  

  • All materials must be digital files and saved as a .pdf or .jpg. Do not include any other file types. The Department of Excise and Licenses will not be able to accept other file types.
  • All materials must be legible.
  • Incomplete applications will be rejected.  

Step 5.Navigate to Denver's Online Permitting and Licensing Center 

In Denver’s Online Permitting and Licensing Center

  • Under Business, Short-Term Rental, and Occupational Licensing, click "Apply New."
  • Under Short-Term Rental License, click “Short-Term Rental License” and “Continue Application.”
  • Read the introduction page and click “Continue.”

This will begin and guide you through the application process.  

At any time during the application process, you can save and resume within 30 days. After 30 days, you will not be able to resume and you will need to start again.  

Revisit our Online Training Videos webpage to help guide you through the application.  

Step 6.Pay required fees

There is a $50 application fee and a $100 license fee. These fees can be paid with a bank account or a Visa, Mastercard, or Discover card. 

Step 7.City application review and next steps

Excise and Licenses strives to conduct an initial application review for any short-term rental application within seven business days. Based on the complexity of your application and current resource levels, approving your application may extend well beyond the initial review period. If an application is incomplete or inconsistent, it can significantly extend the time it will take to process an application completely.

If the application is found to be incomplete, an email will be sent allowing 14 days for corrections.

All applications will be administratively closed if they are not completed within 12 months.  

Step 8.License issuance

If the applicant is eligible, a copy of the short-term rental license will be emailed to them. Be sure to read and follow all conditions printed on the license. The licensee should read "Once You Have Your License" and adhere to the requirements. 

The following documents are required upon application.

All short-term rental applicants:

  • A copy of your Colorado driver's license or Colorado identification card
  • At least two of the following:
    • Proof of valid motor vehicle registration
    • Proof of voter registration
    • Federal or state tax returns or other financial documentation
    • A utility bill

If you do not own the short-term rental property:

All documents must reflect the name of the applicant and their address. 

Changes in general manager/local responsible party

If a licensee changes their general manager/local responsible party, or if the contact information changes, the licensee must file an owner or manager update amendment.

Requirement to post business license number on any advertisements

It is unlawful to advertise a short-term rental without the license number displayed.

Requirement to maintain insurance

The licensee must maintain at least $1 million in liability insurance that covers the use of the property as a short-term rental (or only list the short-term rental through hosting platforms that provide this as part of their service agreement). 

Requirement to keep contact information up to date

If a licensee or general manager's information changes, an online amendment application must be filed making that change.

Requirement to renew annually

Business licenses expire annually. It is unlawful to advertise or operate a short-term rental with an expired license. Renewal applications must be filed online with Excise and Licenses before a license expires.

Requirement to pay taxes

Check your lodger's and occupational privilege tax accounts to stay on the schedule established with the Treasury Department. Even if you only use AirBnB and lodger's taxes are collected, you must submit required filings on time.  You must renew your tax account every odd year. You can access your account at the E-Biz Tax Center.

Update general manager information

Short-term rental licensees who want to add, remove, or update contact information for a general manager must file an owner or manager application. It must be filed within 30 days of any change.

Click this link or use the link on the right side of this page to access the online licensing portal. On the "My Licenses" page, select the "Amendment" action for the license you want to update, then follow the prompts.

Update contact information

If you want to update your contact information, use the link this link or on the right side of this page to access the online licensing portal. On the "My Licenses" page, select the "Amendment" action for the license you want to update, then follow the prompts.

Legal name change

If your legal name changed, email a request to licenses@denvergov.org and include one of the following documents:

  • A certified copy of a marriage certificate indicating your new name
  • A certified copy of a final divorce decree in which the judge listed your desired name change
  • Other certified court documents granting a legal name change