Last week, the city council in Orange County, AL passed an ordinance that has been in the works for months. This new law completely bans homeowners from renting their properties for anything less than a two week period, effectively stomping out the short term rental market in the popular beach vacation area.

Replacing the ‘Short-Term Rental’ License

Cory Pippin reports that “City leaders say the ordinance only impacts owners of single-family residential properties and was needed for the safety of permanent residents”. In place of the old ‘short-term rental’ license, a new ‘vacation rental’ license will only permit property owners to rent their properties for fourteen days or longer. Anyone who currently has the ‘short-term rental’ license and lives in a ‘single-family’ residence zone will have up to one year to make the necessary changes in order to comply with the new ordinance. It is still unknown what the repercussions of non-compliance to this bill will be.

According to Jim Cate, who has been renting a home he owns in Orange Beach for years “the ordinance forces guests into big-time condos in an effort to create more tax revenue in Orange Beach”. As direct evidence, “thirteen percent tax is more to the city so the city makes a lot of money, but it penalizes an individual tax holder and a person who owns the property,” noted Cate. “A lot of people bought property because they could rent it to help pay for the property. Now you’re forcing them aside.”

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