A “short-term rental” is the rental of a residential property for less than one month and in some cases is one night. This includes but is not limited to uses such as weekly vacation rentals, or rentals found on AirBnB, HomeAway or VRBO to name a few. In the City of St. Joseph short-term rentals are considered a commercial use. The zoning ordinance now allows short-term rentals in two districts when certain conditions are met. Within most residential neighborhoods, new short-term rentals are not allowed. Some of the existing short-term rentals were operating when the regulations were adopted and can remain with the proper certificate.

New legislation being considered by the state would, if approved, eliminate the ability of municipalities to regulate short-term rentals through zoning. This legislation would require that short-term rentals be allowed in all residential districts in all communities in the state of Michigan.


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