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Looking For an Investment Home? Your Guide to San Diego's Short-Term Vacation Rules for Homeowners

Whether you live out-of-state and you’re looking for a vacation home in San Diego or you’re a local San Diegan hoping to invest in a short-term rental property - a beach home is an excellent way to put your money to work for you! However, before you buy, it’s important to familiarize yourself with San Diego County’s Short-Term Residential Ordinances. Read on for a brief introduction to each coastal city’s policies.

 

CITY OF SAN DIEGO

The City of San Diego requires a license for short-term rentals of any dwelling unit that is to be rented for less than one month at a time within its nine council districts. This covers the areas along the coast from San Diego’s Naval Base in Barrio Logan up through Point Loma, Ocean Beach, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, and La Jolla. Licenses are non-transferable between locations and owners so you need to apply for a license for each property when you buy.

 

If you’re a homeowner who is simply looking to make some extra cash while you’re on vacation elsewhere, you can apply for a Tier 1 license. This part-time short-term rental license limits you to renting out your home for an aggregate of 20 days or less per year. This is a great way to avoid the heavy summer crowds that congregate at the beach while funding your own vacation away from the traffic jams! 

 

Another way to have your beach home pay for itself is through home share. You can rent out one or more rooms, an accessory dwelling unit, or half of your duplex, for periods of longer than 20 days per year, while remaining in your property. This Tier 2 license requires that the owner be absent from the property no more than 90 days of the year. 

 

Unless your home is in Mission Beach, if you are not planning on residing on the property, then you will need to apply for a Tier 3 license, for which only 1% of San Diego’s total housing units will be approved. With this license, guests are still required to stay for a minimum of two nights. You can learn more about the application process at SanDiego.gov. 

 

If your property is in Mission Beach, you must apply for a Tier 4 license for your investment property. Licenses will be issued to only 30% of the Mission Beach Community Planning Area.

 

Worried about whether you can get a short-term rental license? Keep in mind, you can still invest in a property and rent it out long-term. 

 

 

DEL MAR

The City of Del Mar prohibits short-term rentals of less than 30 days within its residential zone. Short-term rentals are restricted to residential-commercial zones, visitor commercial zones, and where otherwise provided for by development entitlement (i.e. Wave Crest Time Shares, Hotel Specific Plan, and the 941 Camino Del Mar Specific Plan). If you are looking to invest in a Del Mar home, you can still rent out your property for a minimum of 30 days or more. The City Council is currently in the process of determining whether to allow homeowners to rent out their homes while they go on vacation for a maximum of 28 days, subject to a minimum of a 7-day rental. Learn more at DelMar.ca.us.

 

 

SOLANA BEACH

The City of Solana Beach prohibits rentals of less than seven consecutive days. A permit is required for all short-term vacation rentals in Solana Beach as defined as the rental of any structure or any portion of any structure for occupancy for dwelling, lodging or sleeping purposes for more than seven, but no more than 30, consecutive calendar days in duration in a residential zoning district, including detached single-family residences, condominiums, duplexes, twinplexes, townhomes and multiple-family dwellings. Rentals for a duration of longer than 30 days do not require a permit. Owners of short-term vacation rentals are required to pay the appropriate Transient Occupancy Tax. Learn more at CityofSolanaBeach.org.

 

ENCINITAS

The City of Encinitas currently allows short-term rentals with a minimum 3-night and maximum 30-day stay in permitted Short Term Rental properties. Short-term rentals are limited to one rental per residence and unless previously permitted for such use, prohibited in accessory dwelling units. Occupancy is limited to two people per bedroom plus one additional person. The Encinitas City Council recently voted in favor of capping the number of city-issued permits for non-hosted, short-term rental properties and requiring a minimum of 200 feet between existing vacation rentals, among other proposed regulations, however these regulations have not yet gone into effect. To learn more visit EncinitascA.gov.

 

CARLSBAD

In the City of Carlsbad, short-term vacation rentals are only allowed in the “coastal zone” which generally extends 1,000 yards inland from the mean high tide line or the first major ridgeline, as well as the “La Costa Chateaus” at 2003 and 2005 Costa Del Mar. Short-term vacation rentals of fewer than 30 consecutive days are allowed in any legally permitted dwelling unit including multi-family homes and condominiums as long as it is not a violation of the HOA. Learn more at Carlsbad.CA.gov.

 

 

OCEANSIDE

The City of Oceanside allows Short Term Rentals of no more than 30 days with permits in any of its zoned areas with the exception of mobile home parks and non-conforming panhandle lots. Occupancy rules allow a maximum of two adults per bedroom plus two additional adults for overnight stays and 10 additional daytime guests between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. Owners must provide a 24 hour, 7 days a week phone number for addressing complaints. A business license is required for more than 4 short-term rentals on a property. It is prohibited to have a short-term rental in ADU’s permitted after September 9, 2017. Transient Occupancy Taxes do apply. Learn more at WWW.ci.oceanside.ca.us

 

If you’re looking to buy an investment property or sell a beach home, call me today to find out how I can put my real estate experience to work for you. 

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Linda Lederer Bernstein

Linda Lederer Bernstein

DRE #1527365
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