Washoe Commissioners Approve 1st Reading of Short-term Rental Ordinance

Washoe Commissioners Approve 1st Reading of Short-term Rental Ordinance
Incline Village, Nev. - The Washoe County Commission approved the first reading of a short-term rental ordinance, over a year after it was first introduced to the commission.

The ordinance covers STRs in the unincorporated areas of Washoe County, and nearly 90% of them are in Incline Village and Crystal Bay.

The ordinance was brought to the board in Feb. 2020 and at that time, the commission said several changes needed to be made before approving it. Since then, Incline Village residents have been reaching out to county staff with the list of things they’d like to see in the ordinance.

When drafting the ordinance, county staff adopted the mission statement to, “adopt simple, fair and enforceable regulations for STRs that balance competing interests and maximize voluntary compliance.”

The ordinance has a tiered permitting system. Tier one is 10 or fewer guests which would be the basic STR permit. Tier two is 11-20 guests which would require an administrative review and the basic permit. Finally, tier three is 21 or more guests and would require a public hearing to get the permit. They can only be in areas zoned for hotels and motels and commercial standards apply to the property.

Occupancy limits are based on existing fire and building codes, parking capacity, and self-limits such as bedrooms available.

The ordinance states that no parties, events, or weddings are allowed which staff hopes addresses some of the residents’ concerns such as noise complaints. There will also be quiet hours from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. and a decibel device will be installed if there are two confirmed violations.

As far as enforcement goes, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office will use host compliance to do proactive permit compliance, as well as respond to complaints. Fines will be established at the second reading of the ordinance but staff said they will be substantial. If there are three affirmed violations within a 12 month period, the permit will be revoked and there will be a one-year cooling-off period before the owner can apply again.

However, several of the residents’ concerns were not addressed by the ordinance. Residents do not want a person or corporation to be able to hold three or more permits throughout town, although staff said only 2.9% of property owners own more than two properties in Incline Village.

They also wanted only Incline residents to be able to get STR permits. Staff said it would be too difficult to enforce that but community leader Sara Schmitz said it could easily be achieved by using voter records.

Vice-Chair Vaughn Hartung also had concerns about some of the regulations, such as parking restrictions and the bear box requirement, that only apply to Incline Village impacting STRs in other parts of the unincorporated county. When approving the ordinance, it was amended to state those regulations only applied to Incline Village.

While there are likely kinks that still need to be worked out in the ordinance, both commissioners Kitty Jung and Alexis Hill expressed concern about not approving it and going into summer with no ordinance in place.

They passed in unanimously and it will be brought back in March for the second reading. If approved, the permitting system will launch in May and be fully active by August.

Still, many Incline residents are unhappy with the ordinance. Resident Judith Miller was so disappointed that during public comment, she resigned her position as chair of the Community Advisory Board, which the county had asked to help structure the ordinance.

During Tuesday’s commission meeting, commissioners also approved the payment of the refund and interest payments for the League to Save Incline Assets lawsuit. This was mostly a formality, with the commission agreeing to pay its debt.

Washoe County School District has been outspoken against being held liable for a mistake that wasn’t theirs. School board Vice President Andrew Caudill spoke saying forcing the district to make payments they had budgeted would only hurt the students.

Hill asked staff to look into ways the county can help alleviate some of the burdens from the school district and bring back a solution to a future meeting.

Recent Blog Posts

Stay up to date on the latest real estate trends.

Why Moving from California to Incline Village, NV is a Smart Move for Home Buyers

May 17, 2024

Discover Tax Savings, Quality of Life, and Real Estate Opportunities in Lake Tahoe's Incline Village

Why Hiring a Real Estate Team is Better Than an Individual Agent for Selling Your Incline Village Home

May 15, 2024

Maximize Your Home Sale in Lake Tahoe with the Mizak Mountain Luxury Team

Unlock Dual Benefits with a Total Tahoe Expert: Why Choose a Lake Tahoe Realtor Licensed in Both Nevada and California

May 13, 2024

Maximize Your Real Estate Opportunities with Cole Mizak, a Leading Realtor in Incline Village

Optimizing Your Home Sale with Expert Marketing in Incline Village and Lake Tahoe

May 12, 2024

Maximize Your Property's Reach with Cole Mizak, Top Realtor in Lake Tahoe

Always There for You: How My Commitment as an Incline Village Realtor Sets Me Apart

May 9, 2024

Discover How Cole Mizak, a Top Lake Tahoe Real Estate Agent, Ensures Quick, Effective Communication for Home Buyers and Sellers

How to Prepare Your Lake Tahoe Property for Sale: Expert Advice from an Incline Village Realtor

May 5, 2024

Maximize Your Property's Appeal with Proven Strategies from an Incline Village Real Estate Agent

Celebrating Success: Cole Mizak Named One of NAR’s Top 30 Under 30 Realtors

May 2, 2024

Rising Star in Real Estate: How This Award Benefits Incline Village and Lake Tahoe Homebuyers and Sellers

Harnessing the Spring and Summer Selling Seasons in Lake Tahoe: Insights from Cole Mizak, Your Incline Village Realtor

April 29, 2024

Unlock Your Real Estate Potential in Incline Village with Expert Tips for Buyers and Sellers

Navigating Building Regulations in Lake Tahoe: Insights from Cole Mizak, Your Trusted Incline Village Realtor

April 25, 2024

Navigate Lake Tahoe’s Building Codes with Ease – Your Guide to Buying and Selling in Incline Village

Work With Cole

Cole’s mission is to elevate the real estate experience for his clients. He is a long-time Lake Tahoe resident and luxury home expert who has developed innovative strategies to provide his clients with an unmatched, bespoke level of service, attention, and support.