South Carolina imposes a statewide sales tax on accommodations. The responsibility for collecting this tax falls on the shoulders of the person providing the accommodations.
Sales tax must be collected by whoever provides the accommodations, “whether such person is the owner or a real estate agent, listing service, broker, online travel company, or similar entity handling the accommodations….” In most cases, that person or entity must obtain a retail license from the South Carolina Department of Revenue. However, if that person or entity provides accommodations “for one week or less in any calendar quarter,” a retail license is not required. Taxes are still due, and may be remitted annually by April 15 of the following year.
The charge for accommodations is subject to the state rate of 7%, which includes the 2% local rate in addition to the 5% state rate. Any additional local sales and use tax rates administered by the DOR for localities also apply.
The following situations are not subject to sales tax:
- The lease or rental of accommodations supplied to the same person for a period of more than 90 continuous days (the first 90 days are subject to tax; beginning the 91st day, the accommodations are exempt);
- The home consists of less than six sleeping rooms on the same premises and the owner resides in the home while renting rooms to others on a daily or weekly basis. It must be the owner’s “place of abode” while rooms are being rented.