Oahu Tries to Regulate B&B’s and Transient Vacation Units

Mar 15, 2018 | General Information

Over the next year Honolulu’s Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP) will try to root out illegal vacation rentals (VRs). Everyone knows, of course including the city, that over the years illegal VRs have proliferated on Oahu, in spite of a three-decades-old ban. A new ordinance makes it possible to cite an illegal VR just on the basis of an advertisement for guests.

At the same time the DPP is developing regulations and permits to legalize about 1,700 bed-and-breakfast (B&B) operations. Before 1989 the city issued nonconforming use certificates for a mix of B&Bs and “whole home” rentals, also called transient vacation units. In a Transient Vacation Unit the host does not share the premises.

The proposed rules for B&B and TVU permits under a new ordinance are very complicated. For a B&B, the homeowner must live on the premise during the guest’s stay. Up to two rooms may be rented, with only a four guest maximum. TVUs are whole-home or unhosted rentals. that are allowed only in resorts or certain apartment-zoned districts, unless they have been grandfathered-in. Vacation Rentals cannot be booked more frequently than one visitor group per 30 day period. A restriction bars multiple B&Bs within a 1,000-foot radius of each other, however, grandfathered vacation rentals won’t be counted.

In the first six months of 2020, the DPP will work to continue drafting rules while, at the same time, drafting warning letters, notices of violation, and citations. Meetings with interest groups and public hearings will be scheduled and the goal is for B&B and Transient Vacation Unit registrations to begin in October.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *