Although being a superhost in China I'm facing a crisis on legality. SOS!

Hello dear hosts and staffs of Airbnb,

I’m a hostess in Shenzhen, China. I’ve been doing Airbnb for more than one year and kept being a superhost all the time. I had a super great time by doing and experiencing Airbnb life through receipting good guests from all over the world especially the ones that are non-Chinese who speaks English can give me chances to meet new cultures and to practice my English. I gained a lot of good memories not only the money I earned.

However, I was harassed by my neighborhoods for a long time. They believe I’m a bad guy that brings outsiders to their own homes and brings potential safety hazard for neighborhoods. So they cursed me behind myself and complain to the community administration to check my home inside for several times.

I joined their online group tried my best to explain directly what I’m doing is not dangerous and is guaranteed by mature international big company Airbnb. But they just don’t trust me and don’t listen to me at all. They seemed only believe the local legal procedure include Bei’an which means put on records by the police like all the commercial hotels in China and they want every legal procedure that impeccably protects them from being harmed by my guests. However, they also don’t believe I can handle it because they think the bnb in China is all illegal and need to be destroyed completely.

China is a relatively special country in the world. The common society is not as international as other countries considering the internet is all censored and the folk is kind of being opposing everything foreign. My foreign guests are especially conspicuous to the folk. The most important of all, I’m really afraid that bnb is indeed illegal in China and I’ll be harassed and banned completed.

With really anxious and helpless mood, I recalled there is a hosts forum. So I came to tell you my story and my crisis now, hoping anyone can give me some suggestions like is there a possible way to get Bei’an by the police that makes the folk believe my guests are everyone in control? Is there a way to testify that I’m a totally legal host to do bnb business in local folk community?

Aurora Hull

1 Like

As this is an international forum, it is very difficult for a non resident to know what is legal or illegal in your country. Many countries are now changing the rules to restrict the the growth and access of Airbnb. This is evident in Paris, London, New York and very recently Japan and in Sydney Australia. You need to establish what the rules and regulations are in your area and follow them, at leat then you know you have done every thing you can.

1 Like

There is lots of information out there on the legality of Airbnb in China including on Airbnb’s website. A quick search appears to show it is legal as long as you comply with disclosure of guest stays, which Airbnb are doing.

Why don’t you give Airbnb China a call to discuss your situation.


Hi @Aurora.

Sorry to hear of your troubles.

Would it help to have your neighbors over for tea and to meet your guests who would be willing to engage? Is it possible your neighbors are just afraid?

Or, you could also try explaining how Airbnb works and offer to help them start a listing?

1 Like

I think you mistake us for Airbnb. This is a privately funded forum with NO affiliation to Airbnb. You may want to post on their own community forum.

1 Like

I would encourage some of your neighbours to become AirBnB hosts by telling them how much money you get (without sounding boastful). Tell them you will help set them up. I helped my neighbour become an AirBnB host as I think it helps our little area get recognised and “a rising tide floats all boats” as they say. Amazing how quickly people become supportive when they are also making money.

1 Like

If the guests are interested in meeting locals they could also set up an AirBnB “experience” for that and giving the money to the person hosting them for tea or even a meal.

1 Like

Hi @Aurora
i live in Shenzhen and considering starting an Airbnb listing.
Have you managed to solve your problems with neighbours ? What area are you in?


Hi there,

Although I received only a few replies on this forum I felt some of their words were reasonable. I am now understand that there is no absolute and unquestionable way to do Airbnb in China. You can only do your best to avoid troubles as far as possible.

For me, the complaint from my neighbors were much less serious than before. The local owners of household properties are usually overestimated their potential crisis on every respects of community life. It is their social experience gave them this sensibility to be hostility. I understand them although I hate this culture phenomenon.

On the other side, there are too many problems, at least in their own views, to face on daily life and they are not so educated and sophisticated to use practical action to defend for themselves. The most common way is to complain to the community administration to warn us, which was happened for a few times. Some suited officers come into to my home and look around and talked about the renting issue with not bad attitude.

I was very scared at first. But now I understand that it was just reports from some hostile neighbors and they just let the community administration to service them hoping they will solve the problem at once. However the administration doesn’t have the right to enforce us to cancel our things. They just had to do something to adjust the contradiction between neighbors and to reply the complaint.

But you still can’t underestimate the hostility of any local folks. The first thing to do is not to 打草惊蛇 which means acting rashly and alert the enemy. Don’t show in their sight as far as you can. Once I show in their group online to talk about my airbnb they got attention to me and attack me without any thinking. If you keep silence you’ll find they have too many other things in community life to curve and complaint. The angry mood of local folks is always easy to be provoked. I’ve heard a news in Chongqing also about bnb short renting complaint from locals around. The thing even became a riot. However the most violent people were not real property owners who just would like to defend their legal right. The rioters were mostly homeless people who were always want to take part in something and give vent to their angry to society.

The social problems in mainland China are too many and you can never undertake all by yourself.

My situation right now is just keep silence and never get involved in any neighbors as far as possible. I’ve tried to talk to my closest neighbor online sincerely. He is a nice guy but his wife not. At least I’ve done my best to let him, one of my closest neighbors, to know me so that they’ll not be too afraid because of unknown situation.

Another thing is be cooperative to 网格办公室,which is a certain department to do the record of every household especially the ones that are suspected to have floating population like ours.

They are government department and don’t be their victim.

Best wishes,