From the desk of the

Director of Public Relations

Regarding Vacation Rentals...

 

March and April 2021 brought a number of inquiries from Gulf Harbor’s residents, questioning the counties ordinances governing short term rentals.  The correct title now is Vacation Rentals.  I believe this has become an issue for our neighborhood because of Covid 19 and Spring Break, thus creating the perfect storm.  The county’s land development code is difficult to understand at best and poorly worded at worst.  The code can be found in chapter 400 Section 402.5 of the Pasco County Land Development Code.  You must first go to Appendix A of the Land Development Code to understand what the definition of a vacation rental is.  It is defined as “a dwelling that has been advertised more than three times per year for periods of fewer than 30 days but never less than 7 days for use, occupancy, or possession by persons other than the owner, regardless of the form of ownership of the unit”.  What does that mean?  It means that no owner, with only one exception in Gulf Harbors, can rent their home to, even extended family, for less than 30 days but never less than 7 days, more than 3 times per year.  It does not matter whether the owner rents through Airbnb or any other agency.  They cannot rent for less than 7 days at a time and never more than 3 times in a 1 year period.  Any owner may rent their home for more than 30 days and it is not considered a vacation rental.  As I mentioned there is one exception to this policy in all of Gulf Harbors and that is one owner on Floramar Terrace that was grandfathered prior to the implementation of this code.  I do, also want to point out, that this is a county ordinance.  Our deed restrictions do not restrict rentals in any way.  The Code Enforcement Division has begun to enforce this code and the fines, if found guilty, can be up to $500.00 per day.  Every rental homeowner must now register with the Pasco Sheriff’s department via the Rental Registry.  Solving this vacation rental problem can only be accomplished by every Gulf Harbor’s resident, who has knowledge of these illegal rentals, notifying code enforcement.  Our volunteers are doing what they can to protect our peace and quiet but we can’t do it alone.  I understand that having spring breakers partying all night long, next door, on a Tuesday night when you have to go to work in the morning, is a problem.  Code Enforcement can track the necessary information; they just need a heads up on which addresses are a problem.

Skip Geiger