GREEN BAY – Airbnb users will pay 10 percent hotel room tax on their rentals in Green Bay beginning Aug. 1.
Green Bay became the second city in Wisconsin — Madison was the first — to sign an agreement with the short-term rental listing website that’s growing more popular with younger travelers. Airbnb has also reached an agreement with the Wisconsin Department of Revenue to charge sales tax on rentals, too.
Airbnb conservatively estimates it will pay the city $55,000 annually in monthly installments on behalf of its Green Bay hosts.
“These agreements are something we proactively pursue and made the decision to pursue as a company a few years ago,” Airbnb Midwest spokesman Ben Breit said. “We are up to more than 275 of these types of tax agreements.”
Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt said the agreement levels the lodging landscape for hoteliers who now find themselves competing against individual property owners for visitors. He said the agreement will also generate additional revenue for tourism marketing efforts in the region.
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“Use of (Airbnb and similar sites) is going to continue to grow. Hotels are growing at 7 percent. Airbnb users are growing faster than that,” Schmitt said. “We want to capture all revenues possible and Airbnb was very easy to work with. They’re working with much larger cities, and we’re glad we’ll see some additional revenue as a result of this agreement.”
Airbnb has approximately 130 active hosts in the Green Bay area who earned a combined total of $603,000 in 2016. Those hosts welcomed more than 3,500 guests to the Green Bay area, an increase of 155 percent compared to 2015.
Greater Green Bay Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Brad Toll said the agreement resolves concerns about taxes, but not about the safety of rentals listed on sites like Airbnb.