You shouldn’t need to hire a lawyer and an accountant just to share your extra bedroom, but many hotel and tourist tax rules were designed for big corporations with teams of lawyers and accountants. We want to simplify the process. For more than a year, we have been working with cities and counties around the globe to add more jurisdictions to the list of places where we can help hosts collect and remit hotel taxes.
Today, we are happy to announce that on October 15, Airbnb will begin collecting and remitting certain taxes that apply to lodging on behalf of hosts statewide in Washington. The taxes we will collect and remit include state and local combined retail sales tax, and all city and county-imposed taxes on lodging authorized by state law, including special hotel/motel taxes, convention and trade center taxes, regional transit authority taxes, and tourism promotion area charges.
Guests will be charged the appropriate taxes on their Airbnb bill and we will then remit to the State the taxes collected.
Here’s what Seattle Mayor Ed Murray had to say about the news:
“As Airbnb’s presence grows in our city, I appreciate their willingness to step forward voluntarily to ensure that the appropriate taxes are being collected on short-term rentals in Seattle and across the state. At the City, we have already begun conversations with Airbnb to build on this agreement by establishing a clear and fair regulatory framework that will enable people to continue sharing their homes.”
We’re happy to be taking this step to help our host community and we know the Airbnb community is making Washington stronger. Home sharing allows people to turn what is generally one of their greatest expenses into a tool to help make ends meet. Most Airbnb hosts are middle class residents who share their homes to pay the bills. Meanwhile, Airbnb guests generate sustainable, local economic activity that supports small businesses who haven’t benefitted from tourism in the past.
Airbnb first began collecting and remitting hotel and tourist taxes from guests on behalf of hosts in San Francisco and Portland. Since then we have worked together with forward-thinking authorities on similar initiatives in Amsterdam, Chicago, Malibu, North Carolina, Oakland, Oregon, Palo Alto, Paris, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Rhode Island, San Diego, San Jose, and Washington D.C. We are also collaborating with policymakers on similar initiatives around the globe.
As we move forward, we’ll continue our work with leaders in Washington on common sense rules for home sharing. We are confident that we can work together on some simple policies that embrace home sharing and make Washington communities stronger.