Short-term rentals are popping up all over Utah. Many cities don’t know how to handle them.

By Sara Tabin

Dale Carlile sees himself as an honest man. But sometimes, honesty doesn’t pay.

After moving to Utah from Oregon two years ago, Carlile decided he wanted to enter the short-term rental business. Others advised him to run his operation under the radar, because obtaining a license would be too difficult.

But Carlile was determined to follow the law.

He made a deal with South Salt Lake’s new Ritz Classic Apartment Homes to lease a few units and applied for a license. The first time Carlile went into South Salt Lake’s office last January, the woman at the business license counter allegedly informed him that the city didn’t “want his kind” because short-term rentals cut into local hotels’ business.

Six months later, he’s still trying. Carlile has his appeal pending Friday before an administrative law judge after having every license application denied.

Compounding his frustration is the fact that unlicensed operators in South Salt Lake are making profits while he fights his case.

“They have unlicensed people doing the same thing scattered all over the city and they won’t give me a license to do it,” he said.

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