County Vacation Rentals Ordinances for 2021

A hallway featuring light walls, dark wood floors, a white bench, wooden stairs, and a lamp with a white shade on the left.

County Vacation Rentals Ordinance Rules/Regulations (2021)

The County has created three designated area in Santa Cruz County each with its own cap on the total number of short term rental permits allowed in these areas. All three Designated Areas are currently already at capacity, with waitlists for new permits. You can go to the county website to see how long the waitlist is and how to apply to get on it. 

The three designated areas are:

LODA (Live Oak Designated area) Yacht Harbor Area, portion of Live Oak that lies east and south of East Cliff Dr and Portola Dr, from the intersection of 9th Ave and East Cliff to the intersection of Portola Dr and 41st ave.
SALSDA (Seacliff/Aptos/La Selva Beach Designated Area: includes the Aptos planning area bounded on the west by the Capitola city limit, on the north by HWY 1, and on the east of southeast by Bonita Dr, San Andreas Rd, the urban services line from San Andreas rd to Monterey Bay and the community of  La Selva.
DASDA (Davenport/Swanton Designated Area) this includes the Area bounded on the south of Riverside ave, and San Vincente street in the unincorporated town of Davenport, an extending north along HWY 1 to include the areas of New Town and Davenport Landing south of HWY 1, and including all parcels within 1 quarter mile of Swanton Rd but excluding any parcels that abut Last Chance Rd.
Other things to keep in mind when considering purchasing a home for short term rental possibilities:
  • in addition to total number of allowed short term rental permits, there is also a max cap of 20% per block. Just because a spot opens up does not mean you can get a permit.
  • existing permits do not convey with sale
  • vacation rental permits are not allowed on properties with ADUs
  • outside of these areas there is still a total cap and block cap
  • there are a few areas not limited to vacation rental permits: beach drive in Aptos, condos on Rio Del Mar Blvd above beach dr, and certain areas of Capitola village.
  • within the Cities of Santa Cruz and Capitola, still fall under the city ordinances.
  • if you are buying a home to make it a short term rental you must call the county and/or city to find out if it’s allowed or how long the wait list is to get a permit. County # is 831-454-2130
Or go to the county’s website.

Work With Us

Trusted for over 20 years, our team has decades of experience in fluctuating real estate markets and will arm you with knowledge so you can make the best decisions for you and your family. Let us help you to GRO your wealth through real estate!