City of Nanaimo now requires business licenses for short-term rentals

New regulations are in effect for Nanaimo short-term rental and B&B operators.

The city council, at a meeting on February 7, passed changes to the by-law that regulates and authorizes short-term rentals.

The requirement for a business license is one of those changes, which comes after a review of zoning and business license regulations for short-term rentals.

The city defines short-term rentals as the temporary rental of a room or entire home, often through online platforms such as Airbnb. The number of active short-term rental listings in Nanaimo over the past two years ranged from 330 to 585, a city news release noted.

The city announced last week that it had released a Short-Term Rental Operator’s Guide to help educate potential operators on zoning regulations and regulations, building and fire safety information, relevant information about regulations – such as noise control regulations – and other good neighbor practices. The guide which will be available online and at the counter of the City of Nanaimo Service and Resource Center at 411 Dunsmuir Street.

To give short-term rental operators time to familiarize themselves with the new regulations, the city will begin accepting business license applications on April 1.

“The proposed settlement will allow short-term rentals as a lodging option while minimizing the impact of these rentals on the long-term rental market,” Coun said. Ben Geselbracht in the press release.

To view the guide online, go to For more information, visit

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