Airbnb: Generating $2 Billion in Potential Tax Revenue for America’s Cities

This week, members of the Airbnb team are attending the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ Winter meeting and discussing how home sharing helps families make ends meet and delivers more tax revenue to cities. At the meeting, we’re also releasing a new report outlining how the Airbnb community could contribute an additional $2 billion in potential tax revenue to America’s cities. You can read the report here.

We’re releasing this report as part of our work under the Community Compact, a document based on our core principles and informed by the lessons we’ve learned about how best to partner with cities. In the Compact, we pledge to:

  • Treat every city personally and help ensure our community pays its fair share of hotel and tourist taxes.
  • Build an open and transparent community.
  • Promote responsible home sharing to make cities stronger.

In today’s report, we highlight how we have worked with cities around the world to establish programs to collect and remit hotel, occupancy, and tourist taxes on behalf of our hosts and guests in over 20 jurisdictions around the world. All told, the Airbnb community has already contributed $42.6 million to these communities.

We want to do more. We are eager to partner with more cities to expand this initiative, which could generate substantial revenue. According to our analysis of Airbnb booking data and local tax policies, the fifty largest cities in the U.S. could have collected a total of $200 million in hotel, tourist, and occupancy taxes from Airbnb in 2015. Here’s what a few selected cities could have collected:

City Rough estimate of amount in hotel, tourist, and occupancy tax city could have collected in 2015 by partnering with Airbnb
Los Angeles, CA $23 million
Austin, TX $7 million
Boston, MA $3 million
Nashville, TN $3 million
Denver, CO $2 million

 

Even in the extremely unlikely event that the Airbnb community remained static at its current size, this would represent a total of $2 billion over 10 years in additional tax revenue for the fifty largest cities in the United States.

As we meet with Mayors, we’ll be encouraging them to work with us to expand this initiative. We have a dedicated team working to help ensure more cities can collect this revenue from our community.

We have already made tremendous progress working with cities around the world. We’re proud that in just the last week, officials in places like New South Wales, Australia (home to Sydney), Denmark, and Sacramento have announced their intention to help establish fair, balanced rules for home-sharing in their cities. We look forward to continuing to work with policymakers to ensure home sharing makes communities better places to live, work and visit.