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Short-Term Vacation Rental Update


In early 2017, the City launched a process to address concerns about the growing short-term vacation rental industry’s impact on residents and the community. The goal was to examine the use, identify issues, and propose mutually agreed upon revisions to the existing regulations. The process did not focus on expanding the use, nor did it focus on the rental of a bedroom in an owner-occupied home, referred to as a bed and breakfast homestay. It only considered the rental of an entire dwelling unit in the areas where the use is currently permitted.

If you wish to submit comments, please email your comments to 


Individual meetings were held with stakeholders to include the Downtown Neighborhood Association, Victorian Neighborhood Association and Mid-City District. Additional meetings were held with Share Savannah, which represents five local short-term vacation rental management companies; Short-Term Vacation Rental Owners Association; Tourism Leadership Council and Expedia/HomeAway. Meetings were also held with concerned citizens about possible changes to the regulations.

In May and June, eight public meetings were held with representatives from the stakeholder groups and citizens with a total of 333 persons participating.

Areas of Focus

Based on feedback from stakeholders, the City broke down the use into two key areas:

  1. Administrative enhancements focusing on the short-term vacation rental ordinance and methods to improve operations
  2. Growth management concentrating on the zoning regulations and methods to manage the growth of short-term vacation rentals

The STVR Report outlines the proposed revisions to the zoning ordinance and regulatory code for the short-term vacation rentals based on the feedback gathered during the review process.  City Council approved the report with one modification—to limit the number of non-owner occupied STVR per ward based on the number of residential Property Identification Numbers.

STVR Meeting.jpg Small Walkers.jpg

Implementation Timeline

The Short-term Vacation Rental Ordinance will be on City Council Agenda as a first reading on July 20, 2017, with Second Reading to be held August 17, 2017.

As the growth management recommendations require amendments to the Zoning Ordinance, the following proposed timeline will be followed as these revisions based on consideration by MPC and City Council:

  • Submit Request to MPC: By July 12
  • Present to MPC: August 8
  • Advertisement of Zoning Revision: August 15
  • City Council 1st Reading: August 31
  • City Council 2nd Reading: September 14

Recommendations and Presentations:

Short-Term Vacation Rental by area:

Non Owner-Occupied Short-Term Vacation Rentals by area:

Meeting presentations:

Short-Term Vacation Rental Survey Results:
During the STVR updates process, surveys were conducted by the City of Savannah, the Victorian Neighborhood Association and the Thomas Square Neighborhood Association. Please note that 

comments expressed in the surveys are the opinion of individuals that took the survey and do not necessarily represent the official position of any given neighborhood or organization. Surveys conducted by the Neighborhood Associations only represent responses from members of the neighborhood association.