People in Iowa who rent their homes to visitors will soon have to start collecting hotel and motel taxes. Airbnb has signed an agreement with the state department of revenue that goes into effect November lst.
Pleased with the new agreement is Joe Taylor, president and ceo of the Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau. He says proceeds from the hotel motel tax help pay for tourism marketing.
"Number 1, the tourist industry needs continued funding, reliable sources of funding to market itself to other visitors. And number 2, to level the playing field - to make sure that anyone offering lodging, they're all going by the same rules, the same expectations, that kind od thing."
Currently in Iowa, the state's hotel motel tax is 5 per cent, with counties charging from 5 to 7 per cent, and cities adding 2 to 7 per cent to the total.
Airbnb says it now has nearly 1,000 "hosts" in Iowa, renting rooms and homes to 20,000 visitors last year (2016). And the typical Iowa host earns about 3,000 dollars per year through Airbnb.
The company already collects hotel motel taxes in Illinois, and other nearby states including Wisconsin and Michigan, and soon, possibly Missouri.