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Licences Required for Short-term Rentals in City of Calgary

Did you know that Calgary City Council approved changes to the Business Licence Bylaw to require a business licence and regulations for short term rental hosts in Calgary, which come into effect on February 1, 2020?

Definition of a Short Term Rental

A short term rental is defined as the business of providing temporary accommodation for compensation, in a dwelling unit or portion of a dwelling unit for periods of up to 30 consecutive days. Businesses that have been issued a permit for a bed and breakfast are not classified as short term rentals.

Short Term Rental business licence costs

As of February 1, 2020, the Business Licence Bylaw includes a two-tiered business licence category for short term rental hosts. All hosts must have a separate short term business licence for each property they rent out. Tier 2 licensees must obtain a fire inspection for the short term rental property before the business licence will be issued.

Tier 1: 1 to 4 rooms offered for rent = $100 per property

Tier 2: 5 or more rooms offered for rent = $172 per property plus the cost of a fire inspection of $104 per property


There are a whole host of regulations included in this bylaw, and other business owners and consumers can be be somewhat assured of compliance by the short-term rental host as every advertising for the short-term rental must include their business licence number and there must be displayed emergency contact information that is availabe 24-hours a day in every suite.


Short-term rentals can be an entire dwelling or a secondary suite in a dwelling. Rooming houses are covered under a seperate licence bylaw.


More information can be found on the City of Calgary's website, here: Short-term rentals and Lodging Houses.


NOTES: The Provincial Tourism Levy is required to be collected and paid on each Short-term rental in the Province as of April 1, 2021. The tourism levy is 4% of the purchase price of accommodation, currently. There are a few exemptions, so refer to the webpage cited above for more information.



Depending upon the business' GST registration status, GST would be required to be collected on every short-term rental (where a business has chosen to, or been required to, have a GST registration) or not (if the business does not bill over $30,000 per year and they have chosen not to register for a GST account). GST cannot be collected by individuals or businesses who have not registered.

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