Vacation Rentals at a Glance Rating the region's STR ordinances

THE VOMB BOMB SYSTEMWe ranked Monterey Bay vacation cities on their STR-friendliness, ranging from 0 (don’t even think of opening a short-term rental here) to 5 (this jurisdiction seems to know what it’s doing). 

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    MONTEREY

    (Zero VOMBs)

    Don’t even try. City totally hostile to vacation home rentals. Administrators cracking down on violators. If you want to stay here, find a hotel.

  • PEBBLE BEACH & CARMEL VALLEY

    Be ready to spend big money. These locations are outside city limits, and county administrators are still trying to figure out how to regulate and control vacation rentals.

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    SEASIDE & MARINA

    It’s a free-for-all in these cities, at least for now. City halls working on ordinances, but mostly to start extracting transient occupancy tax revenues they’re not now receiving from vacation home rentals.

  • CARMEL

    If you need to ask, you shouldn’t even stay here. Lots of empty homes, owned by rich people with multiple homes in multiple places around the world. But the city put the kibosh on home vacation rentals a long time ago and it vigorously enforces its ban.

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    PACIFIC GROVE

    Depends on your philosophy about short-term rentals. Out-of-towners love staying in these cute little cottages, but they might not be greeted warmly by the neighbors. City working on its third iteration of short-term rental policies, hoping to make life easier for its residents.

  • SANTA CRUZ

    Still the wild west. New city ordinance would limit number of short-term rentals to 250 within city limits, but the ordinance is under review by the state Coastal Commission. For now, VRBO alone shows many more than 300 vacation rentals available in town.

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    CAPITOLA

    City officials know that its Village area is the hub of tourism, so it concentrates short-term rentals in that region. Everything outside that 15-block area is off-limits, and a neighbor will turn you in if you try.

About VOMB

Voices of Monterey Bay is a nonprofit online news source serving California's Central Coast.