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Important Information in Regards to Guest Lodging

Post Date:12/13/2019


Please see the below information from our Planning Division about Guest Lodging.

 Thank you,

New Airbnb regulations are now effective! Apply before the exemption period ends on Monday.

Anyone advertising or operating an Airbnb in Ames, will now need to have a Guest Lodging License. The new regulations became effective December 1. The ordinance is known as the “Guest Lodging Code of the City of Ames,” and is a new Chapter 35 of the Ames Municipal Code

The category of Guest Lodging License depends upon whether the property owner will be present in the home during the short-term stay of the guest and what type of home it is.

For property owners with a one or two-family dwelling who are making an entire home available, a 1000-foot separation distance will be required to limit the concentration in low density residential neighborhoods.

 Application during a two-week window in early December allows those who have been operating with a Letter of Compliance to make application for a Special Use Permit and be eligible for an exemption from the 1000-foot separation distance for existing licensed rental properties. The deadline for the exemption period ends Monday, December 16th.

The City has created a webpage with detail information on the new regulations with FAQs and links to the applications. Go to:

The City Council spent approximately 18 months discussing Guest Lodging standards and licensing issues related to classification of the use and allowances for it in different areas of the before adopting the new regulations.

Contact City of Ames Planning at 515-239-5400 with your questions.


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