AirBnBs I passed on for myself as a guest, and why

This post in response to a request from someone on this forum. I mentioned I had recently opted for a hotel room in Colorado instead of a local AirBnB.

I admit I am extra careful about booking AirBnB compared with hotel rooms.

  1. Zero reviews, communication that did not reassure, no photos of house exterior. I am not opposed to being the first guest. But this property was decorated in heavy bohemian style–lots of draped fabrics, abundant fringe, thick rugs, lots of decor items. How to keep this clean? I wondered. We wrote back and forth a bit and I asked about cleanliness, which they did not address. There were no photos of the exterior of the house, so I couldn’t assess if there was a yard at all. They wrote me several times asking me to book, or if I was going to book, they seemed eager for the business. I felt bad saying no but I did tell them why.

  2. Housing configuration changed after I agreed to book, and the promised discount didn’t show up on the invitation to book. This host required a message before booking. He said yes to us, but he wanted to close off 1/2 the house since we are only two people. And he said he would give me a discount over the stated price. I said OK. But the Invitation to Book price was higher than the original price on the website. He and I checked everything and we couldn’t figure out why. What I should have said is, please send me a Special Offer with the discounted price, but I did not think of this. At this point I began to think the way he was doing business was a little odd and maybe I should move on, so I did.

  3. High cleaning fees made the property noncompetitive, even though the room rate alone looked good. I don’t remember the exact numbers but you get the idea. We booked a hotel suite with a partial kitchen for less than most of the AirBnB houses in that market.


Sounds like that new, clueless host needs to join this forum for some pointers :wink:

I also look at some listings that are crammed with stuff and think, “No way is that place actually going to be clean”, because it would take hours just to dust and wipe down everything.

There are people I call artistic hoarders- their homes full of interesting things they have collected on their travels, the walls and surfaces covered with art and objects. Interesting to look at, and fine if that’s what they enjoy in their own space, but far too overwhelming and cluttered for a rental.

Hoarding is hoarding, whether it’s piles of old newspapers and artificial flowers, or well-made souveniers from around the world.


My response is to item 2. I noticed that when guests search with no dates (thus no length of stay) my price reflects a weekly stay discount. When the guest puts a date range less than a week, my rate in my host listing page is the correct nightly rate. I find this very misleading both as a host and as a guest. So the host isn’t necessarily posting deceptively on purpose.


I’ve stayed in some places that might be described like that. One guy was a retired anthropologist and no amount of dust would ever deter me from the opportunity of spending time with his collection of world treasures and books.

Another guy directed horror films and music videos and collected all of the bizarre/weird/scary/gory props from them. My room had a lighted display cabinet full of bones, dentures, surgical tools, glass eyes and fake noses and ears. And tbh, his place was more than dusty, I had to clean the toilet, but it was worth it.

My rental isn’t like that because I understand the market but as a guest, I only need the bathroom, kitchen and bed to be clean. Dust doesn’t bother me at all, it doesn’t even register for me.


I’ve never been the first guest. I have stayed with a host early on in my Airbnb days that wasn’t a Superhost but they had several 5 star reviews and had been open several months. They just hadn’t hosted a lot of guests. Searching for an Airbnb is a PITA and there needs to be more filters. I can’t filter by reviews but I can by SH, ergo I do. If there are no SH places available I might look at what else is available.

I’ve canceled 2 bookings with hosts that didn’t communicate after a week or two.


Dust doesn’t bother me either, it’s that when places are crammed full, I don’t see how they could really clean the place. I’ve seen listings where it looks like it would take half an hour just to move all the stuff to vacuum the floor. You know for sure that only the center of the room could be vacuumed, and the rest hasn’t been for months.

I also would prefer interesting things around and a great book collection (even if dusty) to a sterile, characterless environment. But bookcases full of books and display cases are different from every surface so covered in stuff that a guest has nowhere to put their own things, or could easily knock something over.

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I’ve been looking for a house with a pool to rent, just for an escape, for my husband, dog and me. We’re trying to go to a different area than last year.

I’ve been passing up listings too but I’m not willing to settle for a hotel. My house is like a hotel, so I don’t want that. I want privacy, quiet and a complete lack of interaction with strangers. And I don’t want other people, and especially not their children, in my swimming pool :imp: :imp: :imp: :grin:

  1. Excessive use of ALL-CAPS in the house rules and/or listing.

  2. Not Self Check-In.

  3. Security cameras pointed at the pool area.

  4. Listings hosted by faceless companies instead of individuals.

  5. Draconian house rules followed by a menu of fees and fines.

  6. A pattern of numerous negative reviews about the same issue.

  7. Half-assed information, i.e. listings that haven’t been filled out completely or seem to be intentionally vague.

  8. Naked duvet inserts. I think this is my new pet peeve. It’s not a comforter, it’s a duvet and it needs a cover on it.

  9. Listings with a pool table instead of a swimming pool (why do those come up? it’s so weird).

  10. “No glitter allowed”. (just kidding, Airbnb should put a ban on glitter in the terms of service). :rofl:


How about duvet covers with no inserts? What’s the opposite of a “naked duvet insert?”

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A soulless duvet cover?

Because clothes are on the outside but souls are on the inside? Sorry, I’m not good at riddles. :rofl:

But it sounds totally fine, just a double thick sheet. And, more importantly, I can imagine that it’s been washed.

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In my 'hood. Too bad the drive is so long.

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Unfortunately, her house rules are just as long as the drive and with lots of ALL-CAPs. If you scroll far enough, not that I recommend it, lol, there is a 30 lb limit for dogs. :triumph: Lots of breed restrictions too, even though mine passes as a “lab mix” she’s twice too big. :wink:

Besides, if I was in the area, I’d want to stay at your place. I’d give up the pool to know that my big, black dog was welcomed. And she’s keen on getting one of those fleece blankets you’ve talked about giving your dog guests :grin:

Honestly, I didn’t look that carefully. I’d seen it on a recent perusal of nearby property listings and thought the price seemed reasonable for what was on offer and the ratings meet my standard.

Once you move back to TX and start taking road trips out west, y’all are welcome here anytime.

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Someday for sure! And at least you know I’ll bring my own lint roller and clean up the dog hair before I go.

There’s one in the room if you forget yours, lol.

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There’s a hotel on the Oregon coast where each room is named and decorated with that author in mind. I stayed there several times when still out west and thought it a great place. The only room I would not have stayed in was Edgar Allan Poe’s room with the pendulum. Think they eventually got rid of that room.

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I’ve heard of that hotel and have always wanted to stay there! I use to stay in a hotel in NY that was similar. It was organized by, floor, by the Dewey Decimal system. (I think my first crush was the Dewey Decimal system :grin:).

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I’ve also heard of that hotel and wanted to stay there, just never had occasion to drive the Oregon coast road. I think it’s called the Sylvia Beach Hotel? Very cool concept for book lovers.

Muddy wrote: “surface so covered in stuff so a guest has nowhere to put their own things, or could easily knock something over.” Same applies in real estate, if observer can’t visualize where their stuff could fit, they are turned off. Though that cramped anthropologist’s place mentioned above sounds interesting.

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A duvet insert wearing a parka??

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Yep. That’s painfully obvious now. Don’t know how I missed it.

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