Filing a complaint

Is my neighbor's short-term rental operating legally?

Do they have a City-issued registration number?
A unit may not actively host/advertise short-term rental guests (staying for less than 30 days) without a City-issued registration number. A unit also may not be advertised for short-term rentals without a registration number issued by the Office of Short-Term Rentals included on the listing.

Please note that both a business tax certificate (from the Office of the Treasurer and Tax Collector) and a short-term rental registration number (from the Office of Short-Term Rentals) are required.

Do they live in the unit?
Even if a unit has a City-issued registration number, the permanent resident must continue to reside in the specific dwelling unit for at least 275 nights a year.

Are they renting too many "unhosted" nights when they aren't there?
Even if a unit has a City-issued registration number, they may not conduct unhosted rentals (where the resident is not present overnight during the guest's stay) for more than 90 nights per year.

You may wish to contact other City departments for some common complaints associated with short-term rental activity.

For excessive noise or parties, call the San Francisco Police Department non-emergency line at (415) 553-0123.

For illegal construction or a possible un-permitted dwelling unit, contact the Department of Building Inspection online or by calling (415) 558-6088.

For improper trash disposal, dial 311 or visit sf311.org.

If it appears the issues noted above are related to short-term rentals, at a specific dwelling, that is not consistent with neighborhood character, please contact our Office as well (see "Filing a complaint" below).

How do I find out if a property has a City-issued registration number?

Visit the City's Property Information Map, search for the address of the property, and click on the 'Planning Apps' tab. A Short-Term Rental Certificate will be listed (at the bottom of the Planning Apps screen) if one is currently active on the property.

Please note that pending applications for a Certificate are not displayed on the Property Information Map.

Filing a complaint

If you believe a property is operating illegally, you may file a complaint by sending an email to
shorttermrentals@sfgov.org or by calling (415) 575-9179. You may also download a complaint form and send it to us via email or USPS.

After we receive your complaint we will investigate, which may take several weeks.

When filing the complaint, please provide the following information:

  • Address of possible violation, including unit number (if known) or floor number
  • Dates and descriptions of activity observed
  • Any other relevant details that may be available, like the name of the possible host, or links to possible online listings, etc.

You may file this complaint anonymously if you wish, although it is helpful for our staff to have your contact information available so that we can follow up with you if needed. If you request to file your complaint anonymously, your contact information will be kept in a separate confidential file.

Download Complaint Form

Fines and penalties for illegal short-term rental hosting

Violations of the City’s short-term rental laws are subject to penalties of at least $484 per day for each dwelling unit in violation. These daily penalties begin on the day that a Notice of Violation is issued by the Office of Short-Term Rentals, and continue to accrue until the violation is fully abated (the short-term rental activity ceases). Repeat violations may be subject to escalated penalties and referral to the City’s Attorney’s Office for additional civil and/or criminal penalties.