City asks residents to comply with short-term rental ordinance

City asks residents to comply with short-term rental ordinance
Posted on 10/03/2012

Cottonwood Heights is a wonderful place to live, with countless recreational opportunities available in beautiful Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons. Because the city council recognizes the positive effects of inviting visitors to our city, it established a process for property owners in certain city zones, excluding single family residential zones, to use their properties as vacation rentals or “short term rentals.” These are properties that are rented out for anywhere from three to thirty days at a time.

The process of registering a short term rental property requires property owners in approved areas of the city to obtain a valid business license and permit, as well as pay applicable fees and follow certain requirements listed in Chapters 5.85 and 19.89 in the city’s municipal code.  These regulations give property owners a legal way to rent out their properties and ensure a positive experience for visitors while mitigating possible negative effects for neighbors surrounding the vacation rental properties.

However, while many property owners choose to properly license their short term rentals and follow the city’s requirements, the city has become aware that there may be others promoting and renting out their properties without being in compliance with the city code. The penalty for operating an unlicensed short term rental property in the city is a misdemeanor citation for every day of non-compliance, with higher fees and possible further legal action to follow if the matter is left unresolved.

Cottonwood Heights is asking those who use their property as a short term rental to call Mike Johnson at 801-944-7060 to begin the process of registering their STR’s. Otherwise, property owners who are found to be running an unlicensed short term rental property will be subject to all penalties associated with that violation of the municipal code.

Residents who are concerned about unlicensed STR’s in their neighborhood can email the city’s code enforcement officers at