Tacoma Housing Providers Must Have Current Rental Business License to Evict or Increase Rent

October 9, 2023

An update to Tacoma's Rental Housing Code passed in July 2023 requires housing providers to have a current City of Tacoma rental business license and rental license before being able to start eviction proceedings or increase rent on their property. Housing providers who do not have a current license can expect their cases to be dismissed.

A recent case in Los Angeles shows just how extreme these types of measures can be. After renting a guest house on a multi-million dollar property in LA for 6 months on Airbnb, a tenant stopped paying rent and refused to move out. That tenant has been living rent free for over 540 days and the city has consistently ruled against the property owner, preventing eviction of this problem tenant because the property owner does not have a current license and because a shower was not built according to code. To make matters even worse, the tenant is preventing the property owner from entering the property to fix the issues.

The key lesson is that housing providers who do not have a current license from the city can expect no sympathy in a courtroom. LandlordSolutions strongly recommends all operators or managers with property in the City of Tacoma to make sure that they have a current rental business license for each ownership entity. For housing providers who work with a property manager, BOTH the property owner and the property management company need to have a current rental business licenses.

Housing providers wishing to check on the status of their license or their property manager's license can visit the City of Tacoma's rental business license database and perform a query. Landlord Solutions has prepared a short how-to guide for how to search for entities in this database.


Step 1 - open the rental business license database


Step 2 - click on the "Filter" button


Step 3 - select your search filters


Step 4 - view your results


If you have questions about this process, please reach out to the City of Tacoma Tax and License Department via phone at (253) 591-5252 (Monday-Friday, 9 AM–4 PM) or via email at for additional guidance.

Ready To Kick The Frustration Of Figuring It Out On Your Own?


LandlordSolutions does not provide legal advice. The information we provide is general information for landlords. If you need legal advice or have questions about the application of the law in a particular matter, you should consult a lawyer.

LandlordSolutions, Inc. © 2023. All Rights Reserved.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram