TUP's For Vacation Rentals

In 2012, the Regional District commenced a review of its land-use bylaws in recognition that visitors to the South Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys were seeking short-term vacation rentals but that such uses were generally not permitted in any zones.

The outcome of this review process was a determination to use Temporary Use Permits (TUPs) as the preferred way in which to address proposals seeking to undertake a vacation rental use.

This is because a TUP application is seen to provide an opportunity for community input, for the imposition of specific conditions (i.e. maximum occupancy, landscaping, manager contact details, etc.) and for regular review of an operation to ensure that it is not causing undue conflict with adjacent residential uses.

The necessary amendments to the land-use bylaws facilitating the Regional District’s approval of vacation rental uses through the issuance of a TUP came into effect on March 20, 2014.

The only exception to this requirement for a TUP is for properties at Apex, where vacation rentals are a permitted use in recognition of the resort nature of this community.

What is a vacation rental?

For the purposes of the Electoral Area Zoning Bylaws, a vacation rental is generally defined as the use of a residential dwelling unit for the commercial accommodation of paying guests for a period of less than one month (NOTE: this does not include Bed and Breakfast Operations)

How to submit an application?

A Temporary Use Permit Application Form can be downloaded from the following link:

TEMPORARY USE PERMIT APPLICATION FORM

Completed application forms can be submitted to the Regional District office at 101 Martin Street in Penticton (we are located across the street from Gyro Park).

What Information needs to be submitted with an application?

While the application form listed above includes a detailed listing of all the material that should be included with a Temporary Use Permit application, prospective applicants are asked to be aware that they will be required to submit a Health & Safety Inspection of the premises to be used for a vacation rental use meets minimum standards for health and safety. 

These inspections can be arranged through the Regional District’s Building Department at a cost of $100.

Health & Safety Inspection Information                 Health & Safety Inspection Application

Otherwise, Schedule 5 of the Regional District’s Development Procedures Bylaw No. 2500, 2011, provides a more detailed listing as well as the processing procedures that a TUP application will follow.

What is the cost to submit an application?

A discounted application fee of $350 is being applied to vacation rental TUPs to December 31, 2016, after which the cost will revert to the standard $700.

In accordance with the Regional District’s “Vacation Rental Temporary Use Permit Policy” the maximum duration of a TUP for a new vacation rental use shall be one “season” (i.e. May 1st through October 31st).

The cost to renew a TUP is $350 and the period of the renewal may be for a period not exceeding three (3) years.

Against what criteria will an application be assessed?

The following criteria will generally be used to assess an application:

  • capability of accommodating on-site domestic water and sewage disposal;
  • mitigating measures such as screening and fencing;
  • provision of adequate off-street parking;
  • confirmation that the structure proposed for use as a vacation rental meets a minimum standard for health and safety; and
  • benefits that such accommodation may provide to the community.

A list of possible TUP conditions is also included under the Temporary Use Permit Section found in each Electoral Area Official Community Plan (OCP) Bylaw which can be accessed here:

LAND USE BYLAWS

Community Consultation

In order that local residents may know that an application has been submitted to the Regional District, applicants will be required to post a notification sign on their property specifying the details of the proposal.

This sign is to be erected within 10 days of submitting an application to the Regional District with confirmation of the sign being on site submitted in the form of a photo showing the sign on the property.  Failure to erect a notification sign in a timely manner will likely result in an application being returned as incomplete.

Specifications for a notification sign can be found at Schedule 1 of the Regional District’s Development Procedures Bylaw No. 2500, 2011.

In addition, it is likely that a vacation rental use will be required to conduct a Public Information Meeting (see Section 5.1 of Bylaw No. 2500) and applicants are encourage to contact Regional District staff to discuss this requirement further.

Enforcement

If you operate a vacation rental and do not have a valid Temporary Use Permit, you may be subject to daily fines if enforcement action is initiated.

Operating a vacation rental without a TUP may also invalidate your property insurance.

Securing a TUP before you operate your vacation rental just makes good business sense — and makes for good relations with your neighbours.

More information regarding the Regional District’s approach to enforcement of vacation rental uses is available in the “Vacation Rentals Enforcement Policy”.