Monterey County Vacation Rental Alliance

Supporting Visitors, the Economy & our Neighborhoods


Owners are often uncertain as to what short-term rental (STR) regulations and restrictions apply to their home. The answer depends upon the location of the home. Currently regulation varies considerably depending upon the jurisdiction.

If your STR is in an incorportated Monterey County city, click CITY REGULATION.

If your STR is in an unincorportated area of Monterey County, click COUNTY REGULATION.

In addition, California State laws also affect STRs.  Click STATE REGULATION.

The Monterey Herald ran an article summarizing local vacation rentals titled “Monterey Peninsula cities grapple with boom of short-term rentals”. This was followed by the Herald editor’s opinion titled “New economy needs smart regulation” including the statement “There’s no holding back on the new economy…”  Exactly!  The need for smart regulation is clearly demonstrated by the failed ordinances of Carmel-by-the-Sea and the City of Monterey.  The outright ban of short-term rentals in these cities has failed.  Just peruse HomeAway or Airbnb listings.  Pacific Grove has smart regulation and it is working.  MCVRA is meeting with the County of Monterey to create just such an ordinance for the unincorporated areas.

Read Full Article See Editorial


We support & encourage fair regulation. A win-win-win vacation rental ordinance should:

• Make it easy for a property owner to offer their residential property for short-term vacation rentals.

• Require that all short-term rentals pay Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT), so visitors help support the services local residents need.

• Establish strict and enforceable standards to prevent neighborhood impacts.

Until we have a strong and enforceable vacation rental ordinance in place, we will have the “worst of both worlds.” Many vacation rentals are not collecting taxes our government needs and we don’t have effective enforcement to protect our neighborhoods. The City of Pacific Grove has a good ordinance that has been tried and tested. Monterey County, the City of Monterey,  and Carmel-by-the-Sea could easily take their cue from Pacific Grove.

Let's continue to offer vacation rental homes to visitors desiring the benefits of this type of lodging. Let’s not drive them away to other areas. Let’s continue to share our coastline with visitors.


In any jurisdiction, it is not sufficient to get a fair ordinance and then sit back. The opposition will attempt to repeal the ordinance or increase the restrictions. You probably read about the $8.5 million fight to defeat Proposition F in San Francisco that would have had a heavy impact on STRs. Locally, the City of Pacific Grove permits vacation rentals but the restrictions are now being tightened. MCVRA is closely involved in preserving the Pacific Grove’s STR ordinance while negotiating reasonable restrictions.

And of course there will always be turnover in elected officials with different agendas. MCVRA meets with candidates to explain the benefits of STRs. MCVRA will continue to represent and support you for the long run.