Warren County officials are reminding owners of short-term properties for rent that they are required to pay the same occupancy tax that is paid by traditional rental properties.
Occupancy tax is a 4% fee imposed on those who rent certain properties, and revenues from this “bed tax” are reinvested back into the local economy for the promotion of tourism and events that attract visitors, according to a news release.
Last year, the county Treasurer’s Office notified property owners who use their properties for short-term rental, defined as 30 days or shorter, that they were required as of Sept. 1 to register with the office.
County Treasurer Michael Swan will be mailing letters to owners of short-term rentals in the county who have not registered to inform them of the requirement.
This includes owners who rent their properties on their own or use companies such as Airbnb, VRBO or some other rental platform.
“We are happy to work with owners of short-term rentals to make this process as easy as possible and to walk them through compliance with the Warren County Occupancy Tax Law,” Swan said in a news release.
“We appreciate the part that you all play in Warren County’s success and we thank you in advance for your cooperation,” he added.
The county does not maintain contractual agreements with short-term rental platforms. County officials said it is possible that some of the platforms may tell property owners they collect the tax, but they do not remit the money to Warren County.
That representation by the rental platform does not absolve a short-term rental property owner of the requirement to collect and forward the tax payments to the Warren County Treasurer’s Office.
Penalties of up to 5%, plus interest, can be imposed for failing to remit occupancy tax to the County Treasurer under the Warren County Occupancy Tax Law.
The Warren County registration process is independent of any rental property registration process that has occurred in some towns in Warren County. If people own a property and registered with the town where the property is located, they are still obligated to contact the Treasurer’s Office to register for occupancy tax collection.
Information and registration forms can be found at warrencountyny.gov/treasurer/bedtax.
Property owners can also contact Swan’s office at 518-761-6379 or email email@example.com to register.