Starting a Bed and Breakfast in Pennsylvania

Bed & Breakfast / Short Term Rental Host Forum

Help Support Bed & Breakfast / Short Term Rental Host Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

Washington Pike

New member
Nov 27, 2008
Reaction score
I am interested in starting a Bed and Breakfast in Pennsylvania and I would like to know where I find PA's rules and regulations on starting and running a B&B in PA.
I have found for most States that the Secretary of State's web page will have the laws/rules posted. Where are you looking in PA? There are a lot of Regional Associations in PA, no statewide. Any of them should be able to help you. Does Washington Pike refer to Little Washington or DC?
Do you know the locality that you're interested in? If so, you could check with that City's regulatory agency for businesses (it is actually Codes & Inspections here). In my experience in looking for B&Bs in several states, it was most important to find out what the specific guidelines were locally. It's much easier if the appropriate zoning is in place. You also need to find out what you have to do for your local health department.
There are a lot of regional associations in PA, but there is also a state organization under the umbrella of PA's Travel and Tourism, which is under the state-level department of Community and Economic Development. You might try there, although I think it is more of a marketing organization than a regulatory one. Here is another website about starting a business in PA.
The local regulations vary greatly from area to area so it is definitely important that you specify a locality and find out the local restrictions. The area of central PA where I grew up is largely unrestricted but the more tourist-y areas around Philadelphia, Lancaster, State College and Pittsburgh are much more regulated.
There seems to be tons and tons of B&B's in PA. Do they have an association? I would check there first. They usually have plenty of helpful info for aspirings. (B&B State Assoc).
Better start LOCALLY FIRST. Zoning regulations will vary from town to town. Some may not even allow a B & B. Check where you want to open first. Then they will be able to tell you who to check with State wise. Most likely your local will be the issue.
I just got the local paper and in the real estate section there are homes at the lake defaulted and going to auction on the courthouse steps - still owing 1mil plus at 7.75% interest rates. One of them said and I quote "Perfect for a bed and breakfast or nursing home."
Isn't that sweet. I guess we kinda do both don't we?!
Me too!!! Let me know what you find out please. It's gonna be awhile but I'm just researching now.
Me too!!! Let me know what you find out please. It's gonna be awhile but I'm just researching now..
Hi Darc!
This is a very old post. I hear that the PA Innkeepers group has a meeting the beginning of November every year. I would check that out if I was you. Also check out inns to work a job at to get experience, even part time...priceless!