Home Ownership & Property Rental

Living in a State Park

Visitors to Jekyll Island know its natural beauty, diverse history, and numerous recreational activities. As visitors return again and again to Jekyll, many make the decision to make this island home or to become a homeowner. However, many are surprised to learn this little barrier island is a state park, which means there are special rules and guidelines for homeownership and property rental for the more than 600 private residences on the island.

Unlike traditional homeownership, all land on Jekyll Island is owned by the State of Georgia. Instead of purchasing a parcel of property and its buildings (fee-simple ownership), the State of Georgia leases the land to owners for a fee, known as leasehold ownership. In this scenario, the homeowner (lessee) pays the lessor (Jekyll Island Authority) rent to lease the land. Under this arrangement, you do not own the land, rather you own the structure, including any improvements, and have the right to use it exclusively and may transfer ownership for the remaining years of the lease. Residential leases are long-term, and current leases expire anywhere from 2049-2088.

As a leasehold property owner, the owner is responsible for the following:

Additionally, you have the option to offer your home for rent on a short-term or long-term basis. However, you must first secure a rental license and adhere to all applicable ordinances found in the Jekyll Island Authority Code.

Below are downloadable documents specific to residential land leases and rental licenses.



Reporting Forms

PDF must be downloaded in order to complete and submit.  


The permit process is as follows. 


Filled out and turned in to the Code Compliance Office at 200 Stable Road, Jekyll Island, GA 31527. Application and documents are reviewed for completeness. If not complete, the applicant is contacted for missing items or to make corrections.


A review is conducted of the application, plans, and other support materials for compliance with current Codes and Standards and Jekyll Island Ordinances and Design Guidelines. The review time can be any were from two weeks to a couple of months depending on when it is received. Development Review Group has cut off dates for submittals.



After approval of the application, a permit is signed off on by the Code Compliance Officer and the permit fee is collected. The Code Compliance Officer explains to the applicant to take the application to Glynn County Building Inspection and Apply for a Glynn County Permit if required. Glynn County notifies the Code Compliance Officer when they approve the plans.


Inspections are performed by Glynn County for Code Compliance and by Code Compliance Officer for Jekyll Island Code of Ordinance and Design Guidelines compliance.


After the project is complete and Glynn County has signed off on the completion, the Jekyll Island Code performs a final inspection and issues a certificate of completion, and notifies Glynn County they can issue a certificate of occupancy.

Download Permits

Records Request

Please contact JIA at 912.635.4000 should you have any questions on this matter.