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Advance warning to untidy guests to “clean up” 3 month booking

Hi there,

I’m a reasonably new host seeking some advice.
At the moment I have guests that have been staying just over three months. They said that they had to move out of their rental as the owner was selling and they were looking for short term accomodation for 3 months before they moved overseas.

They are due to move out early next week. My problem is they appear to be very untidy. The front of the home now looks the beginnings of a hoarder home.
They have bought in all these extra plants, there’s broken scrunched up cardboard boxes and polystyrene boxes strewn around in the rain.
There’s dead branches they put there hanging from the rafters. It’s really quite an eyesore, I shudder to imagine what my cleanup will look like inside.

Their story of going overseas doesn’t appear to check out because you’d be getting rid of these sort of things by now. They also bought in an extra person and a cat (I don’t allow animals) the whole stay. This probably wouldn’t worry me on the long stay if they were clean and tidy.

I checked their reviews before they came and they were all very positive. One review has gone up since they moved in, in February saying they had left that hosts home very untidy and dirty. I’m worried the same fate awaits me so I thought perhaps I’d try to avoid that issue by writing to them a few days ahead of their checkout.

Airbnb support suggested I keep the wording positive and they also said I should not let them know I have been watching them. Yet they highly suggest I bring up the extra person and cat.
Not sure how you’d put all that together?

If you have any suggestions on how to word something up, I’d be very grateful.
After all they may be coming to stay at your place next.

You would be getting rid of things by now if you were moving in a week. Regardless of whether their going overseas claim is true or not, they expect to leave all the junk for you to deal with.

This was an Airbnb booking? I.e. no real security deposit? Steel yourself for a giant multi-day clean-up. Consider yourself lucky if they haven’t permanently damaged anything.

That Airbnb cautions you to not let on that you have been watching the place is absurd. These people are no longer guests, they became tenants after 30 days, making you a landlord, not a host, and as a landlord, you really should have been keeping an eye on the place all along and cut their booking short as soon as the place started looking like a dump.


Wow. It might be too late to create a rule against pets. Do you have such a rule/

I’m probably going to get lambasted by people here but here goes on a message;

I’m so excited about hosting you from [start date] at [check-in time] until [check-out date] at [check-out time].

I wanted to make sure you understood our House rules, which include no pets whatsoever (e.g., a cat). The cleanliness standards are strict. All city and local ordinances must be followed, as well as our House rules; if not, cancellation of your stay without refund is our immediate remedy. Please do not allow any unregistered guests to enter the property, inside or out, even momentarily. Please let’s know of any questions or concerns.

The property, inside and out, needs to be tidy and it is your responsibility and expense to remove clutter/junk at all times, not just at check-out. We will be coming over the day after tomorrow at [fill in] to review the cleanliness/tidiness of property inside and out. Please let us know a convenient time for you, other we will be there at 1 pm on . . ."

BTW, we have a mandatory cleaning and cleaning fee every two weeks so that we know what is going on in unit. You should have same going forward. With month+ rental you should have written separate signed lease.


@HostAirbnbVRBO Reread her post. The extra guest and the cat are a done deal, they have been there all along and the host allowed it to continue. Way too late to start mentioning house rules and transgressions.


Thank you so much for your suggestions. My current welcome message is obviously too soft.

Going forward I’ll certainly be mentioning some of those!

It’s been pointed out to me that this draft message is a little late and would not stand as is because some of this has been going on for awhile. I will revisit tomorrow.

Hi Muddy,

Thanks for your reply. Yes it’s an Airbnb booking. Only a $200 security deposit. That won’t cover much!

Yes the suggestion to not let the guests know we watch them is quite astonishing. Do they think hosts go to the bother of installing outside cameras for no reason.

Just such a conundrum to know what to do now. Do I message the guests and potentially get them offended and offside or say nothing and worry.

Ah well, lesson learned and probably my first and last time hosting such a long booking. My attraction to short term rentals is so i can look after and maintain my place.

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Nothing wrong with sending them a standard sort of list of “Instructions and expectations before leaving” re clean-up. If it sounds like a standard message you might send to any guest, rather than “I see you guys are total pigs who’ve been disrespecting my property”, there is no reason for them to get offended.

When I asked about a security deposit, I didn’t know if it was an Airbnb booking, where you’d have to fight to get the money, or you collected a deposit yourself that you could just keep.

No way I would ever take more than a 28 day booking through Airbnb and then only if they were repeat guests or had pages full of great reviews. My listed max booking length is 2 weeks.


I think @muddy has it right, as usual.


And that’s when you should have thrown them out, for violating your house rules, and charged them for deodorizing (NO cat is odorless). It’s YOUR house, YOUR rules, and you are running a business. You need to enforce your rules, even if you get pushback.

You need to send them a message on the AirBnB platform, reminding them that their tenancy ends on (ending date). SINCE THEY STAYED MORE THAN 30 DAYS THEY PROBABLY HAVE TENANT RIGHTS but check your state laws. This complicates things if they don’t want to leave, and believe me, you DO want them to leave, since they obviously are not respecting your property.

This is why most of us NEVER use Air for any stay longer than 28 days, or have a written lease in addition to Air’s agreement if we do.


I hope that they’re really leaving and that they’re not swatters. Sounds like a nightmare. I’m so sorry for your situation.

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I would never do a long term booking without costing in regular cleans.

If they have bought in additional pets/ guests charge them

Make it clear as to your expectations around how the house should be left inside and out including all rubbish removed. Make it clear if the house is not returned in the state it was given to them they will need to pay for any additional cleaning/ damage to be repaired.

Leave an honest review .


Thank you very much for the advice. Have now sent them their departure checkout as others here have suggested and extended and tightened up my house rules for future guests.

Absolutely, I Do want them to GO!
Early next week will have the answer.

You are right they do now have tenancy rights. I just never realised.
I’ve been distracted doing a urgent Family Law Court case overseas for my mother who has lost capacity and needed to be placed in a 24/7 facility. No excuse though.

If they don’t leave it looks like the best outcome here in NSW, Australia is lodging a dispute with Fair Trading for non payment. There needs to be 14 days unpaid before being able to get the document to go to the police with. There needs to be a hearing in court as well I think.

What is quite surprising is all the glowing reviews the guests have had before. Looks like they even have hosted overseas and here too. They only have the one very bad one that got put up after I took their booking. It’s looks like that poor host may have even left the AirBnb platform.
Wonder what is going on with these guests.

Anyway, never again will I host a booking over 28 days! Thanks to all that have replied here and in other similar topics for the education.

I am in NSW. I had a long term tenant that was given a 90 day notice.
I wanted to renovate.
She was a hoarder with some mental health issues. She would ring me any time of day or night to abuse me when she was unwell, her very unhappy life was all my fault.
She Doctor shopped and was taking every Rx she was given and was poisoning herself.
Her services appealed the eviction multiple times.
The tenancy tribunal only sat once a month …. It took 7 months to get her and her piles of cockroach infested stuff out.
The only positive was that she thought if she kept paying the rent, I couldn’t get her out.
She was one of the main reasons I no longer LTR this building.
And then there were the tribunal fees, the Sheriff fees, the attendance fees, the locksmith fees, Removalist fees, storage of the crap fees……
The process is apply for tribunal date
Tribunal hearing.
Making sure you have followed the bouncing ball and have everything done correctly according to the residential tenancies act.
Even though there isn’t a lease you are still bound by the act.
Mediation - hopefully successful- what you agree to is written as a Tribunal order, this often fails
Mediation fails
Back to tribunal for a new date.
Request for eviction notice.
Issue of eviction notice.
Service of tribunal issued eviction notice.
Tenant doesn’t go
Appointment with availability of Sheriffs…… which is at their nomination.
Confirming date with sheriffs.
Booking locksmith to be there same time as Sheriffs.
Arranging Removalist to move their crap out on the eviction day.
LOTS OF PHOTOS- avoid accusations of theft.
Storage to put their crap in.
Three months of holding their crap.
Disposing / selling of crap if they don’t t claim it.

Horrible long drawn out process, I with you luck and hope they go……

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Gosh Deb that does sound hellishly traumatic, so very sorry you had to experience that.
In my experience people with mental health problems can be nasty, blaming and vindictive eh with a skewed and power tripping grasp of reality.
It’s especially galling when you are deeply involved and trying to find the best solutions.

Thanks for sharing your rather horrific local experience. Appreciated. Forewarned is forearmed and all that.

I’ll report back on how it goes for me.
Nothing at all is happening right now at my place and these guests have stacks of stuff to take/throw away. Gah!


Hopefully there is no forced eviction scenario and the worst is that you have days of clean up and dump runs. Keeping my fingers crossed for ya.

I rented out my entire house in Canada for several years on long term yearly leases while I little by little moved to Mexico. Basically every family of tenants actually thought they could pack up and clean a 4 bedroom 2 story house in the last 24 hours before moving out. Which of course they couldn’t. At least I got to keep their damage deposit.

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Started in June, got her out 27th of January
Tribunal refused to issue eviction notice in December.
If you have a friend in real estate as a tenancy manager, go and have a heart to heart with them about the process.
The slightest mistake, you have to start from the BEGINNING AGAIN!

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I had a guest from Canada who told me about a “professional tenant” she had who knew the landlord/tenant act inside out and knew she couldn’t evicted during the winter. So she moved in in Sept, stopped paying the rent the first of Nov. and my guest couldn’t get her out until April.

The worst part was this was a shared home situation, so my guest had to live with this jerk for 6 months of no rent.

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@Sharmaine_Palmer please provide an update to this horror show! I hope they received your message and wrote back with reassurances that they will be cleaning up, etc.


Netflix has a series called “worse roommate ever” . A fascinating but horrible collection of true room mate stories.

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