Case Studies

How to Get Around HOA Short-Term Rental Restrictions?

Last updated on December 18th, 2023

How to get around HOA short-term rental restrictions

Short-term rentals are fully-furnished properties rented for a short period of time. These properties are on platforms such as Airbnb & VRBO to gain more bookings and exposure. STR business is lucrative and perfect if you want to achieve financial freedom!

However, here’s what you should know. Properties under community associations (HOA) have certain laws on short-term rentals. Some of them even prohibit the operations of short-term rental businesses! 

Homeowners’ Associations (HOAs) have set community standards and policies. They are usually against short-term rentals due to their experiences with guests. This includes excessive noise, traffic jams, limited parking space, and other complaints. Anything that makes their neighborhood feel unsafe — is always controlled.

But do you still want to know the legal ways to get around HOA? You’re on the right track.

In this article, we’ll cover some expert tips on short-term rental HOA regulations and risks. We’ll also discuss when to consider purchasing an Airbnb property with HOA laws. Continue reading to learn more!

Risks of Getting Around HOA Restrictions

HOA short-term rental restrictions are set by owners in each community. It’s best to think about your options again if you are planning to buy a property with HOA rules. Especially if it clearly states that short-term rentals are not allowed.

There’s no guarantee that a neighbor won’t report your activities if you try to get around the rules. And if they discover your not-so-secret operation, you can get into serious trouble. Here are some of the consequences and risks of getting around HOA restrictions:

  • Legal Actions Against Hosts

The first thing that you have to avoid when running an STR business is receiving legal action. Whether these are zoning restrictions or HOA laws, it’s always best to follow them. Otherwise – one day you’re earning good money, then you’re asked to permanently close in the next few days. 

If you breach the HOA regulations, you can expect to receive notice of legal action. This will usually require you to hire an attorney and attend court hearings.

  • Pay the Price: Fines 

If the HOA board has set fines for breaking such laws, then they can absolutely require you to pay certain fines. And that can be ultimately frustrating if you’re only about to start the business!

  • Airbnb may Permanently Disable your Host Account 

Getting your host account disabled is the most terrifying risk when you get reported on Airbnb for getting around HOA rules. It’s always better to pay the price than get permanently banned from the platform.

When to Consider Purchasing A Property with HOA Laws?

Some property investors are still willing to buy a property with HOA restrictions. Despite there being HOA laws prohibiting short-term rentals! For instance, you fell in love with a lakefront property located in a subdivision.

However, it only allows 30 days minimum of operating short-term rentals. If your primary agenda is to have a retirement home or a space to call your own, then it wouldn’t be a bad idea! 

Here are other reasons why you should consider purchasing a property with HOA laws:

  • Temporary passive income

Do you have another property and only want to achieve more temporary passive income? Then this can be an excellent decision with a new property.

Pro tip: Once you become an HOA member, you can always suggest adjusting certain rules for short-term rentals so you can earn more in the long run!

  • Personal & leisure purposes

Similar to a retirement home, it’s ideal to buy a property for your own leisure. This means that the sole purpose of purchasing the property is not just for STRs. But you can also invite friends over, host a family reunion or enjoy your own home.

  • Check Airbnb website

There might be some exceptions that you can’t read from their terms. Check on Airbnb to see if some properties are listed on Airbnb or other similar websites. For example, if many listings in your neighbourhood is already rented out by college students, the homeowners may be OK for you to run an Airbnb as long as you don’t disturb your neighbours too much.

Don’t see any listings on Airbnb? Maybe, you can use a short-term rental analytics tool, which shows historical data of your neighbourhood. There might be some hosts who listed their listing in the past. If you find that, take a screenshot, and show it to the HOA and ask them. It might lead to a more productive conversation. 

short-term rental historical data

Top 3 Expert Tips: How to Get Around HOA Short-term Restrictions (The Legal Ways):

Did you go through your HOA and discovered that they restrict short-term rentals? Here are the top 3 expert tips on how to get around HOA STR laws:

  • Collaborate with a Realtor 

Before purchasing a property, you will speak with a real estate agent to discuss the details. You can directly let him/her know about your intention to operate an STR and get a few tips. You can also ask other realtors who have a deeper knowledge of HOA short-term rentals.

  • Consult an Attorney’s Advice

Frightened by breaching laws & paying fines? One of the best ways to get around HOA short-term laws is to consult a lawyer who specializes in HOAs. Since you’re already aware of the risks of breaching HOA rules, then it’s ideal to seek an attorney’s advice.

  • Change Your Listing into a Mid-Term Rental

Once you have reached the 30-day limit (or maximum days to operate STR), here’s another option. It’s time to change your listing to a medium or long-term rental to avoid facing legal action.


HOA rules and regulations can consistently change from time to time. The best way to strategize on short-term rental restrictions is to speak to a board member. 

At the same time, you can consult the CC&Rs’ (Covenants, conditions, and restrictions) advice. Knowing the potential risks of getting around HOA’s restrictions is important. And we highly recommend doing it the legal way.

If you’d like to find profitable properties and make the best investment possible, you can also take advantage of a short-term rental analytics tool like  Airbtics!


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