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  • Carrying on a business of providing short-term accommodation – supporting information

    This page lists the documents and information we usually need to process a private ruling request or objection about whether the profit you make on the letting of property on a short-term basis is ordinary income. Providing supporting information will reduce the time it takes us to process your request.

    If you want to apply for a private ruling about whether you are carrying on a business of providing short-term accommodation, you'll need to:

    • complete and submit the relevant private ruling application form
    • provide the supporting information and documents listed on this page.

    If you want to lodge an objection about whether you are carrying on a business of providing short-term accommodation, you'll need to:

    • complete and submit the relevant objection form
    • provide the supporting information and documents listed on this page.

    Note: The alternative for the carrying on of a business of providing short-term accommodation is the holding of that property for investment purposes.

    Supporting information

    If you have previously provided us with any of the information listed below, you don’t need to provide it again.

    The information and documents we require for a private ruling or objection about whether you are carrying on a business of providing short-term accommodation include (you need to provide us with these details for each property):

    • details of the property you use in relation to your short-term accommodation activities, such as
      • the address of the property
      • the date you purchased the property and its purchase price
      • your ownership interest in the property
      • the reasons you purchased that particular property, in that location, at the time you purchased the property
      • your original intention for the property when it was first purchased and if that intention has changed
      • what the property has been used for from the time it was purchased until it commenced being used for short-term accommodation, and the periods involved
      • the date the property commenced being used for short-term accommodation
      • any improvements made to prepare the property prior to the commencement of the short-term accommodation
      • the current market value of the property
      • any amount borrowed to purchase the property
      • money still owing on any loans for the property
      • if you sold the property, the date you sold it, the sale price and the reasons why it was sold
       
    • how, where and through whom the property is advertised
    • commission you pay to any short-term accommodation platforms or websites
    • the number of hours per week on average you spend dealing with issues relating to the provision of the accommodation, including an itemised list of the activities of each of your activities and the time spent on each activity
    • any other parties whose services are engaged in relation to the short-term accommodation activities, and
      • the activities they undertake
      • how often their services are engaged per week
      • the time they spend on those activities per week
       
    • when the property is cleaned
    • whether the property is cleaned at the request of the visitors, and if so, how often that occurs and whether you charge any additional fees for this service
    • who the visitors contact if the property requires repair work during their stay and under what circumstances you personally would be contacted
    • how the visitors gain access to the property and what is expected to occur when they leave the property
    • what amenities and other services are provided to the visitors and how often they are provided
    • how and when the visitors pay for their stay and who they pay
    • how you receive the income from providing the short-term accommodation and when you receive it
    • the amounts the visitors are charged and any breakdown of those amounts for any specific charges
    • any separate costs charged for linen or cleaning and when that occurs
    • any tariffs received, including
      • the amount of the tariff for staying at the property
      • whether the tariff varies during low and peak seasons
      • whether the visitors still have to pay the tariff for the original booking period if they decide to cut their stay short
       
    • whether the amounts received from providing the short-term accommodation activities are your only source of income
    • details of any bank accounts used in relation to providing the short-term accommodation and if a separate bank account is kept specifically for those activities
    • how the amount paid by the visitors is determined and how often the amount charged is changed
    • any goods and services tax component included in the charges to visitors
    • if the visitors pay a deposit bond, to whom they pay it, and when they pay it
    • formal or written documents relating to the short-term accommodation use of the property such as
      • any agreement the visitors enter into when using the property
      • documents provided by any platform used in relation to providing the short-term accommodation
      • terms and conditions for the use of the property by visitors during their stay as provided by the platform and/or you
      • financial statements in relation to providing the short-term accommodation during the period being considered
      • insurance policies for the property
      • your business plan in relation to your short-term accommodation activities and any strategies you have in place to expand your activities and to achieve your goals, including future projections for the property
       
    • what records you keep in relation to the property and your short-term accommodation activities
    • what occurs if a visitor decides to cut their stay short
    • any minimum and maximum periods the visitors can stay at the property
    • when the property is inspected, by whom and how often the inspections are undertaken
    • details of your employment, such as the number of hours per week you work and the location of your day-to-day work
    • why you regard yourself as carrying on a business in relation to providing short-term accommodation rather than holding the property as a passive investor.

    Next steps:

    See also:

    • Taxation Ruling TR 97/11 Income tax: am I carrying on a business of primary production?

    Paragraph 13 of Taxation Ruling TR 97/11 lists eight indicators to determine whether a business is being carried on. Although this ruling refers to the business of primary production, these indicators apply equally to activities of a non-primary production nature, and in this case, providing short-term accommodation.

      Last modified: 13 Jul 2020QC 63155