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Short-term rental business licence changes

Short-term rental business licence changes

On June 6, 2023 Calgary City Council approved bylaw changes to the requirements for short-term rental business licences. Changes will come into effect on January 1, 2024 and will apply to new and renewing short-term rental licences.

The changes to the business licence requirements strengthens the accountability of short-term rental hosts and property owners, reduces negative impacts on the community and enhances the safety of guests. The bylaw changes reflect The City’s commitment to creating a fair and sustainable environment for all residents, visitors and businesses.

To download the Short Term Rental Business Licence Application Requirement List click here.

Key changes


All current and prospective short-term rental hosts are required to have a business licence to provide temporary accommodation for compensation. 

Key changes taking effect in January 2024 to the business licence requirements include:

  1. Provide a fire safety plan of the rental unit or portion including:
    • All accessible rooms and floors for renters, including bedrooms and sleeping areas (living rooms with a fold out couch).
    • Location of smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, and carbon monoxide detectors.
    • Fire exit locations.
  2. Submit proof of ownership or owner consent, validated through a title search conducted by The City or provided Land Title at application.
  3. For condos, written approval from the condo board for Short Term Rental, sealed by the Condo Board.
  4. Proof of insurance indicating coverage for home sharing or Short Term Rentals:
    • Indicating that the property is insured for home sharing.
    • The Short Term Rental Licence owner (applicant) must be the insurance policy holder.
      • If the applicant is a property management company, they must provide their liability insurance.
    • Insurance must be issued by a registered insurer in Alberta with a minimum liability of $2 million.
      • Click here for a list of approved companies.
    • Review insurance documents to ensure compliance and satisfies the specified requirements. This information might be outlined separately by your insurance company or within your insurance coverage documentation.

Additionally;

  • Licence Inspector review
  • Annual fire inspections done by Calgary Fire Department will be required to ensure compliance with all life safety requirements.

The bylaw changes reflect The City's commitment to creating a fair and sustainable environment for all residents, visitors and businesses. These amendments aim to strike a balance between enabling the economic benefits for short-term rentals and minimize the negative impacts on the community.

Further details regarding the changes are provided below:

  • Greater accountability

    The licence applications will require proof of property owner's consent for short-term rental to be offered to guests for compensation.

  • Enhanced safety

    Rentals must include a fire safety plan, fire inspection to ensure safety standards are met and to validate allowable guests, and proof of liability insurance coverage for the property.

  • Improved community impact

    The new requirements will include a review of the property to improve the impact on the neighbours. Reviews will ensure the property is being operated in a manner that does not disturb the peace of any other individual.

How can you prepare?


For short-term rental property hosts, below are a list of steps you can take to prepare before the changes to short-term rental licensing take place:

  1. Get familiar with application requirements.
  2. Double check you have all the required documents (floor plans, proof of insurance, letter(s) of authorization) and submit a complete application to move through the business approvals with ease. 
  • Phase 1 Short Term Rental Study: What We Heard Report

    The What We Heard report from phase 1 of our Short-Term Rental Study, in collaboration with the University of Calgary, is now available. This comprehensive report encapsulates feedback and insights gathered from Calgarians, highlighting key themes and suggestions that will guide our future initiatives. Visit the Engage page to access and download the report.

  • Short-term rentals and lodging houses

    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.

  • Are you a short-term rental host?

    Download our posters to place in your property for guests to access and download the Good Guest Guide!

    Unleash the power of exceptional guest etiquette with the Good Guest Guide.

  • Navigating the latest business licence requirements for short term rentals

    November 29, 2023

    Hear from The City’s Licensing teams as they discuss the evolving licensing requirements that affect the short-term rental industry. Stay up to date on how you can stay compliant and succeed in this dynamic market.

Apply for a business licence to operate your short-term rental


Once you have gathered all required documents, you can apply for your licence online at or in-person at the Planning Service Centre (800 Macleod Trail S.E.).

If you have questions about short-term rental licensing contact the Planning Service Centre to connect with a member of our planning team before you apply. All applicants will be assigned a Business Experience Representative, who will work with you through the regulatory process.

two people walking into a short term rental unit