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I don't own the property I would be hosting


Like the title says, I don’t own the property I would be hosting. It’s sort of the family vacation home, but it technically belongs to my mother. My mother is very supportive of my hosting, but she has no interest in doing the hosting herself. She points out (correctly) that what I am signing up for is a part-time and some days full-time job, and she is seventy-one, and she’s already done jobs, and honestly if it doesn’t involve spoiling my kids rotten, it isn’t a job she’s interested in. Which, I mean, that’s fair. This is my project. I’ll take care of it.

But it means that I would be signing up for airbnb and any similar websites I choose to use, and representing a property that I don’t own. Is that allowed? Or do I have to set a profile up for my mother, and list the property under her name, then make myself a co-host and make sure all the notifications and everything go to me? That seems overly complex. Surely there are enough people hosting on a rental property that ownership isn’t a requirement.

Can anyone link me to the rules on this? Googling “airbnb requirements to host” gives me things about having towels for every guest.


You can be the primary host for a property that you have permission to use as a AirBNB listing. Heck, you don’t even need permission, but it is highly recommended from a practical point of view.

In your scenario, I can’t imagine having your Mom be the primary host. The number of emails she would receive would FEEL like a job.


No you are good on Airbnb. Other platforms make you submit proof of ownership but not Airbnb.

Open the account in your name. You are getting the payments and will be responsible for the taxes.

You are fine here.


Thanks, guys! It’ll be a while before I’m ready to start hosting—I have to fix up the property a bit first—but it’s nice to know that it’ll be under my control when I do. Like you said, I really don’t want to make my mother have to be primary host and receive all those emails, so it’s good to know that I don’t have to.


Isabel, be careful to look up the regulations in your country. Airbnb might not have anything against it but the law might. In my country only the member of the same household as the owner can host. They were actually fining people who were hosting on Airbnb by advertising and booking apartments for their neighbours and friends. Usually there are no problems when immediate kin is in question (I for example, host for my mother, but we live in the same house). It is legally defined as a “family business”, or “hosting in one’s household” so they’re strict about that. The money has to go to the owner’s account, or more specifically, to the person whose name is on the certificate allowing them to host in the first place. Also the owner is legally responsible, no matter whose name is on the Airbnb profile.

Of course, even if the name would be your mom’s, this doesn’t mean that she has to actually be the person who replies to emails.


Thanks, Inna, that’s something I hadn’t thought of. I’m in the United States, in Tennessee, and at a first look it seemed like most of the regulations on short-term rentals were specifically for Nashville, not out in the country where we are. But I was checking on taxes and so forth, not property ownership. I’ll try and find out about that on Monday when the county government offices open.


They will probably not have a single idea about what you are asking them!
I honestly think you are fine. we have had plenty of people here who have successfully hosted their homes that were in their mom’s name. @J_Wang for example.


They will probably tell me they’ve never heard of a rule about that, you’re right, but I might as well check.

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