Experience the difference of "Elite".

Channel API & taxes

Valerie R
Oct 9, 2019 10:53 AM
Joined Sep, 2019 118 posts


I am beginning to research using OR's Channel Manager, so am reading all of the documentation about it.

On this article https://www.ownerreservations.com/support/articles/channel-management-api-integrations-preparation it says:

"Test that taxes are correct. If you had taxes turned off for a channel previously (like HomeAway because they were remitting taxes for you) make sure to turn them back on before going API. Some channels stop remitting taxes for you once you go API, so you need to make sure they are being collected. Consult the channel documentation we have for each channel to verify the specifics."

When I was testing as suggested, I discovered an issue.

In two of my properties' locations, Airbnb & VRBO collects & pays all except 2% of the required taxes. So in OR, I've entered the location's full tax rate (7.3% in VA and 10.875% in CO) for quotes for direct bookings, and I've also added a "2%" tax in each location, to use for VRBO & Airbnb bookings.

When testing, the system (of course) presented both tax options. I assume this might be a problem if I want to use the API Channel manager, right?

What do the rest of you do in locations where the listing site does not collect/remit ALL of the required taxes?

Chris Hynes
Oct 9, 2019 11:40 AM
OR Team Member Joined Oct, 2012 1396 posts

For HomeAway in API integrated mode, they will use the taxes you've got configured in OwnerRez. They will collect all of them but they don't remit anything -- instead the entire amount will be passed through to you and you'll remit them all yourself.

For Airbnb, they have recently added a custom tax collection mode where you can do the same thing -- set all of the taxes to be collected, and then have them pass all of them through to you and remit them.

If you check on a listing in your Airbnb account in the Local taxes and laws section (see screenshot), do you see that Custom option? If so, you'll be able to do passthrough taxes on Airbnb as well.

That way you can configure the correct taxes everywhere and there is no issue with double tax because of tax on tax issues that happens when you add the extra taxes to your rate.

Valerie R
Oct 9, 2019 1:38 PM
Joined Sep, 2019 118 posts

Thank you Chris, that makes sense. I'll go check all of those other listings' tax settings.


I discovered on my Airbnb account that some of my listings have the invitation to "Add Tax" as you've described, but not all. One of the listings that I currently have to collect 2% for is one that does not have the option to have Airbnb pass the tax through to me. So, I'm still unsure how to handle the 2% tax for that property. Maybe I can just ask the guest to pay it separately, after they book.

Chris Hynes
Oct 9, 2019 7:47 PM
OR Team Member Joined Oct, 2012 1396 posts

Yep, paying separately would be the best bet on that. Airbnb is rolling out this feature over time so if some of them have that option hopefully they'll get it to all -- definitely something to ask Airbnb support about as you transition over.