Just in case anyone read an earlier re-post from 2017, below, and thinks it pertains to the 2018 Airbnb/Homeaway bill. If you're a Hawaii owner and haven't joined RBOAA, you're very likely to be missing out on key information that impacts you -- like tax increases and when they take effect, and new legislation that could curtail your TVR.
This is from the Hawaii Rental by Owner Awareness Association on the 2018 Airbnb/Homeaway bill:
Legislature Update -- Legislature 2018 Now in Session
The legislature started up again in mid-January and originally about 30 bills were introduced which could affect you. As predicted, most of them fell away, so it probably good we didn’t bore with the full list a few weeks ago. And one bill we wouldn’t have mentioned three weeks ago is now top of the list. The bills which remain are quite concerning, as usual.
This bill is the latest iteration of the AirBnB as tax collector bill that we have seen for the past three years. However, it has mutated into something quite frightening. How AirBnB can continue to support the bill is a complete mystery. (If you advertise with AirBnB, you might ask them!)
In a nutshell, SB 2963 includes:
- An amnesty program for those who haven’t been totally on-board with their zoning permits, GET and TAT collection and remittance. We have been asking for this provision for year, so good to see it is finally on the table.
- The advertising broker ( i.e. AirBnB) may collect and remit tax on behalf of all advertisers. However, if they mess up, AirBnB and the owner are jointly and severally liable for all taxes. So, if AirBnB collects TAT and doesn’t remit it, you are potentially on the hook. The bill also requires AirBnb to provide details of how many nights were rented, the rates per night, the address and name and number of the local contact – and this information can be made available to the Counties. The County of Honolulu has been asking for this for years to help detect compliance with their complex permitting requirements.
- All operators must provide proof of compliance with all zoning, land use and tax laws. Our concern here is in providing positive proof of compliance – how do you prove you are legal in every regard. The Counties have no system to accommodate this.
- Failure to comply with any tax or zoning law is considered a Class C Felony (more than one year in prison). The bill also provides for not only seizure of the property but also all income earned from operating a vacation rental.The bill also allows counties to phase out all transient accommodation in any zone for any reason.
RBOAA is actively opposing this bill, but, we need to warn you that the legislators want this bill to pass and have cleared away a lot of procedural steps to ensure that it does go through.This bill has already cleared the Senate and the next step is to be heard by a House Committee (we don’t know which one or when).