HomeAway, Inc. (NASDAQ: AWAY), the world’s leading online marketplace for vacation rentals, today announced an investment in HotSpot Tax, Inc., the only automated, web-based tax filing solution for state and local short-term rental taxes in the world. The investment reinforces HomeAway’s commitment to helping owners successfully rent and operate their properties and enables HotSpot to expand upon its existing standalone tax compliance product to offer an integrated solution across many short-term rental platforms. Ultimately, both support the mission of making it simple and easy for short-term rental owners to comply with the laws within their local municipalities.
“Tax compliance is an important issue in our growing industry, and we believe most municipalities see it as the emblem of a level playing field among local lodging providers. Generally, if people are not compliant, it’s because it’s not easy to figure out and comply with local requirements, not because they’re avoiding taxes,” says Carl Shepherd, HomeAway® co-founder and chief strategy officer. “HotSpot makes it easy for owners to know they have properly remitted these highly specific taxes, which in turn increases local compliance and helps municipalities benefit from the vacation rental industry."
Co-founded in 2002 in Denver by Rob and Kim Stephens, HotSpot offers a comprehensive tax compliance solution that manages all tax and license requirements for vacation rental owners and managers. HotSpot maintains an extensive database of tax rates throughout thousands of locations across 43 states. To date, HotSpot has filed 350,000 sales & occupancy tax returns and paid $80 million in taxes to state and local agencies. HotSpot charges its customers an average of $10 to $12 per month.
“We’ve been HomeAway’s exclusive tax compliance partner for many years,” says Rob Stephens, HotSpot co-founder and CEO. “HomeAway makes it easy for individual owners and property managers to rent their home to travelers and offset the cost of ownership. Our mission is to provide a simple solution to the complex and burdensome tax compliance issues faced by owners and managers, to help them operate their rental business legally. Complexity is the enemy, and both businesses help solve for that.”
The terms of the investment have not been disclosed.
About HotSpot Tax, Inc.
HotSpot is the leader in sales, occupancy and hotel tax compliance solutions for the vacation rental industry. HotSpot’s powerful software platform provides an automated state and local tax filing solution for thousands of properties across the U.S. HotSpot manages all aspects of occupancy related tax requirements, including tax rate determination, obtaining and renewing licenses, preparing and filing tax returns each month and monitoring tax rate and law changes.
Our huge library of forms, extensive database of tax rates and proprietary processes make the complex and burdensome tax requirements very simple for our customers. At an average price of $10 to $12 per month, HotSpot is any easy and affordable way for anyone vacation renting or room sharing be tax compliant.
HomeAway media contact: Jordan Hoefar, 512-505-1857, jhoefar@HomeAway.com