The City of Knoxville is now issuing permits for short-term rentals following the recent adoption of new ordinances. There are three types of permits depending on the type of owner and zoning. More info in the city press release after the break...


Beginning this week, Knoxville residents wishing to operate a short-term rental unit can apply for a permit from the City of Knoxville, provided they meet the conditions in the City’s newly adopted short-term rental ordinances.

The application form is available on the City website at It includes a list of necessary supporting documents, including proof of ownership and residency (for Type 1 permits). Applications will be accepted and permits issued through the Business Tax Office, in room 450 of the City County Building, 400 Main St.

Short-term rentals – defined as rentals for fewer than 30 consecutive nights – were not allowed under City codes until the adoption of the new ordinances. They are now allowed under certain circumstances:

• Homeowners who live in residentially zoned neighborhoods can apply for a Type 1 permit, available only for owner-occupants of the property that will be rented (in whole or in part).

• Owners of residential property in non-residential districts – e.g., downtown and in other commercial areas that allow residential uses – can apply for up to two Type 2 permits. You do not have to be the resident of the property to apply for a Type 2 permit. (These can also be applied for by a lessee of the property, with permission of the property owner.)

• Type 3 permits are available on a one-time basis to non-occupant owners of residential property in residential neighborhoods, provided the owner can show the property was being used as a short-term rental prior to March 1, 2017. These non-owner-occupied properties are eligible for one one-year permit, with no renewals. Applications for Type 3 permits must be filed by Feb. 1, 2018. No Type 3 permits will be issued after that date.

City staff will offer training and question-and-answer sessions for short-term rental hosts on two dates: 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 9, and at 11 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 19, both in the Small Assembly Room at the City County Building. There is also a list of answers to frequently asked questions online at


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