Business Taxes

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12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 223
Fairfax, VA 22035
Young Tarry
Division Director

Transient Occupancy Tax

Transient Occupancy Tax is applicable to any public or private hotel, inn, apartment hotel, hostelry, tourist home or house, motel, rooming house, any place that offers Short-Term Lodging as defined in Article 20, Part 3 of the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance, or other lodging place within the County offering lodging for one or more persons at any one time, and the owner and operator thereof, who, for compensation, furnishes lodging to any transients, rented out for continuous occupancy for less than 30 consecutive days. It is based on gross receipts for all accommodations facilitated.

The total Transient Occupancy Tax in Fairfax County is computed as follows:

  • 2% Transient Occupancy Tax (Code of Virginia, §58.1-3819). These funds are used to support general county expenditures. (This tax does not apply to stays in properties located within any town imposing a tax on transient occupancy.)
  • 2% Transient Occupancy Tax (Code of Virginia, §58.1-3824). These funds are used to help promote tourism and fund a non-profit convention and visitor’s center in Fairfax County.
  • 3% Transportation District Transient Occupancy Tax (Code of Virginia §58.1-1743). These funds are dedicated to regional transportation.

Filing Requirements

Pursuant to Virginia code 58.1-3826, all accommodation intermediaries/businesses offering guest rooms as defined above are required to file a return and remit the tax amount monthly on or before the last day of the month covering the amount of tax collected during the preceding month.

Beginning October 1, 2022, third party accommodations intermediaries became responsible for filing and paying local lodgings taxes in Virginia. In an effort to promote uniformity among localities, the Commissioner of the Revenue Association of Virginia developed a TOT filing form that can be remitted to any locality in the Commonwealth.  Its use is not limited to accommodations intermediaries, however, anyone wishing to file their Transient Occupancy Tax manually (rather than online via our Business Tax Portal) may use this fillable pdf form and submit it with a check. A monthly return must be filed even if no taxes are due.

Calculation of tax

The total Transient Occupancy Tax for businesses in Fairfax County is calculated at the rate of 7% (2% for general transient occupancy tax + 2% for tourism + 3% for regional transportation) on the gross room rental, less any exempt rentals and refunds.

The total Transient Occupancy Tax levied by Fairfax County for businesses in the Towns of Clifton, Herndon, and Vienna is calculated at the rate of 5% (2% for tourism + 3% for regional transportation) on the gross room rental, less any exempt rentals and refunds. This is in addition to Transient Occupancy Tax levied by the towns. 

Exemptions include:

  • Rentals paid to any hospital, medical clinic, convalescent home, or home for the aged
  • Rentals over 30 days
  • Rentals made to the Federal Government
  • Rentals made to bona fide diplomats

If the business fails to file the return on time, penalty and interest will be assessed. The penalty is 5%; for each month delinquent, the interest is 0.42%.

Questions regarding the Transient Occupancy Tax may be sent to the Personal Property and Business License Division at or by calling 703-222-8234, option 4.

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