Lake Tahoe has long been viewed as an extremely desirable vacation and retirement destination. There are myriad reasons why buyers choose to invest in property in Lake Tahoe/Truckee.
One of the primary motivations to buy in high-demand areas is the rental income potential. With vacationers aplenty year round, Lake Tahoe is a popular choice for those looking for a reliable short-term rental income flow.
However, setting up a short-term rental (STR) arrangement can have its obstacles. Due to its impact on the local economy and resident lifestyle, each community has a different set of regulations in place. If you are considering buying property in Lake Tahoe for the purpose of short-term rental income, make sure you are aware of local policy regarding these properties. Below, we have outlined the most recent STR regulations in each of the five counties bordering Lake Tahoe. The maps below highlight the areas affected by each set of policies.
City of South Lake Tahoe, CA
Since the implementation of Measure T in 2018, short-term rentals have been banned within the city limits of South Lake Tahoe. Previously issued vacation rental permits were allowed to expire in 2021, and are not eligible for renewal. Learn more.
Tourist Core, South Lake Tahoe, CA
The Tourist Core is exempt from the Measure T regulation mentioned above. Although it is located within the city limits of South Lake Tahoe, it is an area zoned for commercial and tourism, so vacation rentals are permitted. Buyers beware, there is a limited number of single-family homes and condo complexes (such as Lakeland Village, Sierra Shores and Zalanta) located within this area. Learn more.
El Dorado County, CA
County neighborhoods outside the areas highlighted in red are considered county neighborhoods. Vacation rentals are permitted, but capped at 900 issued permits.. All the South Lake Tahoe neighborhoods outside of the area highlighted in red are considered county neighborhoods. Vacation rentals are still allowed in the county, but restricted to a 900 permit cap. Currently, all permits have been issued, and prospective permit holders are waiting for more to be issued. Note: Properties that have an active permit when a house changes ownership do not transfer. When the house sells, the permit becomes null and void. Learn more.
Douglas County, CA
Located along the southeast shoreline, Douglas County encompasses the communities of Stateline, Zephyr Cove and Glenbrook. This county has also instituted a 600 permit cap on STR permits within county limits, effective July 15, 2021. The remaining applicants will be placed on a waitlist to qualify to apply for future available permits. Each year the waitlist applications will be accepted through July 1-31 of the calendar year ONLY. Learn more.
Incline Village, NV
Incline Village is located along the northeast shore of Lake Tahoe, in Washoe County. There are currently no rental restrictions in Incline Village, although there are rental regulations and a rental permit must be obtained from the county. Please keep in mind that for condos and townhouses, most of the HOAs in the area do not allow short term rentals. Learn more.
North Shore Communities, CA
Tahoe’s North Shore is comprised of several small communities scattered along the major roadways: Tahoe City, Tahoe Vista, Kings Beach, Carnelian Bay, Olympic Valley and some areas on the West Shore (Homewood and part of Tahoma) are located in Placer County.
On August 31, 2021, the Placer County Board of Supervisors approved an extension to the Urgency Ordinance moratorium until March 31, 2022. The Board of Supervisors made adjustments to the ordinance and instituted a cap of 3,900 rental permits. Now that the moratorium is lifted, STR permits will be issued in order:
- First priority will be given to those who need renewal.
- Second priority will be given to those who were exempt before this ordinance in Olympic Valley and various other homes (People who purchased a property during the moratorium, where the property had a valid rental permit).
- Third priority is given to those who applied for an STR permit after the moratorium, or new applications.
- New STR permit applications, that are received prior to reaching a total cap inventory, will be processed on a first come first serve basis. At such point that the total cap inventory is reached, all outstanding permit applications, either in process or received will be placed on a waitlist.
The Agency will continually maintain the overall cap inventory as permits are not renewed or revoked and on a quarterly basis. The application process will open to those on the waitlist on July 1, 2022. Learn more.
Truckee is part of Nevada County. On September 29, 2021, Town Council approved an Urgency Ordinance 2021-06, establishing a 45-day moratorium on the issuance of new Short-Term Rental registration certificates. Learn more.
The following categories are exempt from the moratorium:
- Complete applications that were received by the Town prior to the adoption of the Urgency Ordinance on Sept 29th.
- New owners of a property which was in escrow in connection with a pending sale at the time the Urgency Ordinance was adopted IF a transient occupancy registration certificate was in effect for a property immediately prior to the close of escrow.
- Registration renewals for the 2022 calendar year.
How to Get Started
If you are interested in learning more about obtaining and managing a STR in Lake Tahoe, it is best to do so with the guidance of an experienced local real estate agent. Please feel free to give us a call at (530)581-1400 or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.