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STR Applicants & Operators

This page contains information for people operating or applying to operate a short-term rental.

Operators are people renting their premises on a short-term basis, for a period of 28 consecutive days or less, and includes people operating bed & breakfasts.

Resources for Applicants

Resources for Operators


You must submit and be approved for a Short-Term Licence before advertising or operating a short-term rental.  Licensing requirements come into effect on March 1, 2024.

The City is working towards an electronic application portal.  Until that system is online, short-term rental licence applications can be submitted by mail, email or in person at the service counter at City Hall.

Mail: City Hall, 808 2nd Avenue East, Owen Sound, ON N4K 2H4


The annual fee for a licence is $500.00.  The fee can be paid by mail using a cheque made out to the City of Owen Sound, or at the service counter at City Hall by cash, cheque, debit or credit.

From the time that an application is deemed complete, it will take approximately 30 days to review, complete inspections and provide conditional approval. Final approval will be provided upon completion of registration for the Municipal Accommodation Tax.  

Individuals advertising and/or operating a short-term rental without a licence may be issued a $1000.00 fine for each day there is an offence.

Bed & breakfasts are considered short-term rentals and require a short-term rental licence to operate.  However, bed & breakfasts are not subject to a cap on the number of days they can operate or the requirement to book one group of visitors at a time.

An owner is only allowed to operate one short-term rental at their property.  The short-term rental may be made up of rooms in the principle dwelling and rooms in additional units.  The maximum occupancy remains 8 people regardless of how many rooms are available. 

Tenants may each operate a short-term rental (with permission) in addition to the owner's short-term rental. 

Yes.  Each short-term rental operator will be required to submit a 4% (plus HST) Municipal Accommodation Tax per stay.  This amount needs to be shown as a separate line on each receipt you provide to visitors for their stays.  The City has designated the Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association to help collect the tax.

Revenues from MAT are reinvested to support tourism in the City.  See the City's MAT page for more information.

Yes, as part of the application process each short-term rental may be subject to inspections by Building, Fire, By-law Enforcement, Engineering or other City staff.  Additional inspections may be required while the short-term rental is operating if complaints are received.

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