At the end of 2021, Asheville City Council voted to pass the homestay ordinance, which introduces various changes to the established rules governing homestays such as Airbnbs and the like. Prominent among the changes are new rules around homestay kitchens: Specifically, the ordinance now allows Asheville homestays to have a full kitchen. At Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty, our brokers are well versed in the new homestay rules; if you’re shopping for Asheville properties with homestay potential, we can help you navigate the ins and outs of the new ordinance.
Among other things, the new homestay ordinance:
- Clarifies that the homestay host can live in any part of the home and rent any portion of the home to overnight guests, either as a shared or separate space (still limited to 2 pre-designated bedrooms)
- Clarifies that the homestay space can be rented for overnight guests or a long-term (greater than 30 days) tenant while still maintaining the validity of the homestay permit
- Requires that homestay applicants must definitively affirm that they live at the property and that they have only one primary, full-time residence
- Allows a homeowner who does not live on the property to be co-applicant with the tenant for homestay
Implements a new restriction that bans homestays in accessory structures, unless a valid homestay permit exists on 12/14/21, and its use as a homestay is maintained
Questions the new ordinance addresses include:
Can I have my sink and my large fridge back?
Can I have my stove back too?
It depends. If there is an internal connection between your homestay space and the rest of the house (e.g., internal staircase), you can have a full size stove in your homestay space. If the homestay space is attached and can only be accessed by an external entrance, you can’t have a stove for short-term rentals.
I have a homestay in an accessory structure now; will I be able to continue to operate as a homestay after the effective date of the new ordinance?
Yes, but you must maintain a continuously valid homestay permit, and must comply with Section 7-17-3 of the UDO. If you sell your property, the buyer can continue operating the homestay. To do this, the buyer needs to submit a homestay permit application referencing the seller’s homestay non-expired permit number.
If I have a basement living area with a full kitchen, can I occupy it and rent out the remainder of the house to overnight guests?
Possibly, but you will still be limited to two bedrooms for overnight guests. If the basement apartment is connected internally to the rest of the house, you can live in the basement. For all other configurations, there may be restrictions or required building upgrades.
If I have two single-family homes, can I rent one as a homestay and live in the other?
Yes. You will be a co-applicant with your tenant who lives in the other house. The tenant will certify and provide two forms of proof that they are the full-time resident. Both parties will be listed on the permit and both will have the full responsibility for compliance. If your renter has a homestay, you cannot.
Thanks to the Asheville Homestay Network for these questions and answers! Please note their disclaimer below.
Disclaimer: These FAQs are based on our interpretation of discussions with the city. Any official interpretations of the rules are the sole responsibility of the city. Check with the city before making material decisions.
For additional inquiries, contact the city’s Building Plan Reviewers at 828-259-5967 or email BuildingSafety@ashevillenc.gov.
Read some FAQs and the Ordinance itself here so that you make an informed decision: https://www.ashevillenc.gov/service/apply-for-a-homestay-permit/
Mosaic’s agents are well equipped to help you in your search for Asheville properties. For more information, please contact us at Info@MyMosaicRealty.com, or call us anytime at 828-707-9556.
Search: Asheville Area Homes with Homestay Potential
***These search results may offer homestay potential but are not precise or accurate. Refer to the ordinance to make an informed decision.