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Fresno Looks to Partner With Airbnb to Ensure Occupancy Taxes Are Collected
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By Edward Smith
Published 1 month ago on
March 6, 2024

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City could collect $1 million a year by teaming with Airbnb.

Fresno charges a 12% transient occupancy at hotels and short-term rentals.

Under the proposal, Airbnb would collect the tax and pass it on to the city.


The Fresno City Council will decide Thursday whether to partner with Airbnb to create a database of its short-term rentals in hopes of ensuring the city collects the required taxes.

Since 2019, Fresno has charged a 12% transient occupancy tax on hotels and short-term rentals. But when it comes to short-term rentals, collections are largely self-reported, according to Sontaya Rose, director of communications for the city. Rental owners may not know they have to register with the city, she said.

Under the agreement, Airbnb will collect the taxes and provide them directly to the city. The agreement applies only to Airbnb. Other short-term rental websites such as VRBO would require their own agreements.

City estimates peg the number of short-term rentals at approximately 1,000. When Airbnb begins automatically filing taxes to the city, that could bring in $1 million annually, Rose said.

Fresno Airbnb Trends Slightly Buck the National Average

The short-term rental market can be very flexible. Owners may take a property off the market for their use or a longer-term rental.

Coming off the holiday season, January is a tough month for short-term rentals typically, said Madeleine Parkin, public relations specialist with data tracking website AirDNA.

Nationwide, occupancy and listings at short-term rentals struggled in January. Compared to a strong January 2023, year-over-year occupancy declined in January by 7%.

The average daily rate rose only .5% year-over-year to $309.63.

Analysts say the typical decline in listings from December to January is anywhere from 3,000 to 20,000. From December 2023 to January, however, the number of listings dropped by 73,000 nationwide.

AirDNA found 753 available listings in Fresno in January, a 1% increase from last year. Owners made more money with the average rate climbing 3% to $149.70.

Travelers hoping to have a place to themselves have more options in Fresno. Of the short-term rentals in Fresno, 69% are entire homes, apartments, or unique stays, Perkins said. Only 31% are private rooms.

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Edward Smith,
Multimedia Journalist
Edward Smith began reporting for GV Wire in May 2023. His reporting career began at Fresno City College, graduating with an associate degree in journalism. After leaving school he spent the next six years with The Business Journal, doing research for the publication as well as covering the restaurant industry. Soon after, he took on real estate and agriculture beats, winning multiple awards at the local, state and national level. You can contact Edward at 559-440-8372 or at Edward.Smith@gvwire.com.

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