Reviewed and updated on 03/05/2020

Along with many cities across the U.S., Columbus, OH requires all Short-Term Rental operators to obtain a Short-Term Rental permit through the city. The application process includes applying in person with a signed and notarized Short-Term Rental Application and paying the corresponding fees. The owner and operator must also provide a copy of general liability insurance listing the Short-Term Rental property as insured. This is a similar requirement to those held in Tuscaloosa, AL, Newport, OR, and areas in Washington State.

The requirements for Hosts and Hosting platforms are put forth in Chapter 598.04 of the new city ordinance for Columbus:

(H): All short-term rental hosts shall obtain liability insurance for each short-term rental. Each short-term rental shall at all times maintain the following insurance coverage meeting all of the following requirements:

  1. A general liability insurance policy or certificate that shall provide the minimum coverage.
  2. Not less than three hundred thousand dollars ($300,000). Such policy or certificate must be issued by an insurance company that is admitted to do business in the state of Ohio or by an eligible surplus lines company or risk retention group.
  3. The policy or certificate shall provide notice of cancellation of insurance to the Director at least ten (10) days prior to cancellation.
  4. Any cancellation of insurance required by this section shall result in an automatic revocation of the respective short-term rental permit.

The severity of the regulations is such that non-compliant owners may be charged with a minor misdemeanor and fined up to $500.00.

Stated in the Amendment to Ordinance 2145-2018: “The City’s goal with the legislation is to balance the well-being and interests of City residence and visitors while allowing short-term rentals to operate and become a piece of the economic and tourism fabric in Columbus.”

Cities such as Columbus have an intensifying challenge before them in properly regulating Short-Term Rentals while serving the needs and keeping the peace of the community.

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The Proper Choice

Proper Insurance leads the way in the Short-Term Rental market insuring properties in all 50 states and meeting and exceeding local ordinances. With a Proper Insurance policy, all groups involved have peace of mind know they are correctly covered.

Proper’s policy is a commercial property and commercial liability policy. There are no standard occupancy restrictions which gives the insured coverage for personal use of the property and commercial use (rental).

Proper’s recommendation to cities looking to implement new regulations would be to define the type of liability in the regulation to be “commercial general liability”. It is readily available for purchase in the open market for short-term rentals, and too often, “personal” or “premise” liability will not suffice for short-term rentals.

Update: The owner and operator must provide a copy of general liability insurance listing the Short-Term Rental property as insured and listing the City as additional insured.

Once the permit is granted to the host, they must include the permit number on any advertising site where their property is listed for short-term rental.

Give Proper a call today to understand how your Short-Term Rental business fits with both regulations and insurance – (888) 631-6680.

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