Tax Guide for Rental Companies

Helping your business succeed is important to the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA). The taxes you collect and pay to the state help fund state and local services and programs important to you and your community. We recognize that understanding tax matters related to your business can be time consuming and complicated. We want to help you get the information you need so you can focus on starting and growing your business.

We created this guide detailing the tax issues and information important to rental companies to help you better understand the tax obligations to your business.

How to Use This Guide

Each section on this guide contains information relevant to your business.

The Getting Started section provides key resources related to registration, filing returns, account maintenance, recordkeeping practices, exemptions, and other important information you need.

The Leases in General section includes topics important to the success of your business such as determining the application of tax to leases, good recordkeeping practices, and other helpful information specifically related to your business.

The Industry Topics section covers the different types of leasing companies, each in an at-a-glance format that can be expanded to provide more extensive information.

Lastly, the Resources section provides links to a wealth of information, including web-based seminars, forms and publications, statutory and regulatory information, and other helpful resources.

Please note: The general information provided is not intended to replace any law or regulation. This guide summarizes the law and applicable regulations in effect when it was published. However, changes in the law or regulations may have occurred. If there is a conflict between this document and the law, decisions will be based on the law.

Get it in Writing

Our tax and fee laws can be complex and difficult to understand. If you have specific questions regarding this topic, we recommend that you get answers in writing from us. This will enable us to give you the best advice and may protect you from owing tax, interest, or penalties should we give you erroneous written advice. Such protection is not provided for advice given to you verbally, in person, or on the telephone.

Requests for written advice can be emailed to CDTFA or mailed directly to the CDTFA office nearest you.

For more details, please see publication 8, Get It in Writing.

If You Need Help

If you need assistance with the topics included in this guide, feel free to contact us by telephone or email. Customer service representatives are available Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Pacific time), except state holidays.

If you have suggestions for improving this guide, please contact us via email.

Free Educational Consultations

Now that you have your new business up and running, you may be faced with the challenge of interpreting and complying with the complex and changing Sales and Use Tax Law.

As part of our commitment to helping you understand your sales and use tax obligations, we established the Taxpayer Educational Consultation Program. This free program provides eligible businesses with education and personal assistance and helps taxpayers prepare for their sales and use tax reporting requirements.