License renewal

Obtain a rental license | Services

Service overview

You need a rental license to rent accommodation or property to tenants. This license is issued by the Department of Licensing and Inspections (L&I).

You do not need a rental license:

This was previously called a housing inspection license.


Owners and their agents can apply for this license.


Other licenses and registrations

Property Information

  • New owners: Provide proof of ownership in the form of a registered deed or settlement sheet. L&I will not accept a bill of sale or sheriff’s receipt.
  • Owners who live outside of Philadelphia: Identify a managing agent with a Philadelphia mailing address on the application. The agent is responsible for the interface with L&I. The owner will be listed as the license holder and will take legal responsibility for the license.
  • Company owned properties: Provide the name and mailing address of one of the following:
    • Each individual having more than 49% interest in ownership of the property
    • The two most interested people
  • Questions? See property FAQs.

Lead Safety Certification

Proof of legal occupancy

Tax and Code Compliance

  • You must be current on all taxes for the city of Philadelphia.
  • You must not have any outstanding L&I violations.

Where and when


Fee per unit


Maximum fee: $22,770

There is no charge for owner-occupied units.

Renewal fee per unit


Maximum fee: $22,770.

$165 for vacant property or land.

Late Renewal Fee: If you renew your license more than 60 days after the expiration date, you will be charged 1.5% of the license fee for each month since the license expired.

Payment methods and details

Payment methods accepted

Where accepted payment
Online via the eCLIPSE app

(There is a $200,000 limit for online payments.)

  • electronic check
  • Credit card (+2.25% surcharge)
In person at the Permit and License Center of the Municipal Services Building
  • electronic check
  • Credit card (+2.25% surcharge)
In person at the cashier station in the municipal services building

(Items paid for at the cashier station will be posted within five working days.)

  • Check
  • Money order
  • Credit card (+2.25% surcharge)
  • Cash

Checks and money orders

Check requirements
  • Make all checks and money orders payable to “City of Philadelphia”.
  • The person or company listed on the check must be listed on the application.
  • Personal checks are accepted.
  • Checks and money orders must have issue dates within 12 months of the transaction.
Reasons your check may be bounced

L&I will not accept checks that are missing deposit information or are:

  • Unsigned.
  • Expired.
  • Postdated.
  • Startup checks without account information.

Payment Return Policy

If your check is returned unpaid for insufficient or uncashed funds:

  1. A $20 fee will be charged for collection.
  2. You authorize the City of Philadelphia or its agent to make a one-time electronic funds transfer from your account to collect these fees directly.
  3. The City of Philadelphia or its agent may electronically resubmit your check to your depository institution for payment.
  4. If the City is unable to obtain payment, the license, permit or appeal application will be cancelled.
  5. You cannot take any further action under a permit until you have paid all fees.
  6. The permit or license will be revoked if unpaid fees are not paid within 30 days.
  7. You cannot file or obtain additional permits until you resolve the outstanding debt.

Late license payment

If you renew your license more than 60 days after the expiration date, you will be charged 1.5% of the license fee for each month since the license expired.


You can apply for this license online using eCLIPSE or in person at the Permit and License Center.


Upload all required documents.

Applications are reviewed within five business days.


If the request is approved, you will receive a notice of payment of the balance.

If the request is not approved, you will receive an email indicating what is missing or required.


Visit the Permits and Licenses Center.

L&I can review most requests while you wait.


L&I will issue your license or request more information.

Renewal requirements

This license must be renewed annually. You can renew online through eCLIPSE or in person at the Permits and License Center.

To renew, you must:

  • Be up to date on all taxes in the city of Philadelphia.
  • Have a valid email address.
  • Have no outstanding L&I violations.
  • Follow lead safety rules.

Rental licenses are non-transferable and cannot be renewed by the new owner of a property.