Transient Housing Licensing


The Mayor and Council recognize that clean, well-built, crime-free transient housing facilities such as hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, and short-term rentals play significant role and are part of the foundation upon which healthy communities are built.  This licensing program is to protect and promote the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens and transient visitors of Hagerstown, to establish rights and obligations of the owner/manager and the transient visitors in the use of transient housing facilities, and to encourage all parties to maintain and improve the quality of transient housing facilities within the community.  

Effective Date:

This program was approved by Mayor and Council on June 20, 2023.

Transient Housing Types:

Bed and Breakfast

As defined in the Land Management Code, Chapter 140 of the City Code.


Any hotel, motel, or inn in the City having one or more rooms where transient visitors are lodged for pay.  This includes any transient housing facility collecting Washington County hotel rental tax in the City.

Short-Term Rental

A residential rental unit or room of a dwelling unit for a fee less than 30 consecutive days through online sites such as Airbnb, Flipkey, Home Away and Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO).


All inspections are conducted by the Planning and Code Administration Department and Hagerstown Fire Department.  The inspections encompass all areas of the transient housing facility, exterior and interior.

  • Hotel Inspections
    • Tier 1 hotels are inspected triennially
    • Tier 1-(R) and Tier 2 hotels are inspected annually
  • Short-Term Rentals and Bed and Breakfasts are inspected triennially


All transient housing facilities owners, managers, and employees are to provide proof of training completion.

Section 15–210 of the Business Regulation Article requires innkeepers to provide training and guidance to its employees in order to accurately and promptly identify and report suspected human trafficking to the proper authorities. The following training protocols have been approved to satisfy this requirement.

  • Overdose Response Program Training provided by Washington County Health Department
    • Call 240-313-3365 to schedule training

Premises Requirements:

  • No hourly charge for any transient housing unit
  • No unit may be let more than twice in any twenty-four hour period commencing at 12:01am
  • No unit is to be used for any illegal purpose such as but not limited to drug related crimes and prostitution related crimes
  • Posting of Planning and Code Administration Department and Hagerstown Fire Department phone numbers and addresses within units and at reception area.

Guest Registry Requirements:

  • Legal name
  • Permanent address
  • Dates of occupancy
  • Current license plate number, state of registration, and make and model of any vehicle under units control
  • Number of individuals in the unit
  • Amount of bill and method of payment