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Am I being too picky? Should I leave an honest review for these guests?

So I get a guest who wants to stay at my property. He tells me he’ll be in town filming a movie and wants to stay for 8 days…
Red Flag #1:
He asks for a bigger discount during peak season even though he’s already getting a 15% weekly discount.

So I explain to him that we have already extended him a discount and there’s not much more we can do. He then complains about Airbnb’s guest fee as if I’m taking the whole thing. I kindly explain what the guest fee is but by then he’s like “don’t worry about it.” Even though it’s clearly an issue. Anyways he’s already had three positive reviews and because his booking dates basically shut September completely up for me I decide to approve him. Still, I was a little iffy because I don’t think he realized the value that he was getting by staying with us. I just felt that he thought he was some sort of hotshot and because he’s decided to bless our town with his presence to film his movie he deserves more than any other guest would. Mind you out of over 20 guests we have 5 star reviews across the board. We offer a space that makes the best hotel in our city seem like a lame studio apartment at twice the rate.

Red flag 2:
3 days in he needs more Nespresso Pods so he asks me where he can get some. Mind you we already left 15 pods and they run $0.75 each. On top of that we left them a 6 pack of craft beer and a bottle of good wine. We also fully stocked the Keurig with like another 24 pods. Either way I tell him there is no place to buy them we will bring more. So I give him another 15 pods…I inform him that the pods are in the mail box. NO THANK YOU, NO TEXT BACK, NOTHING.

Red flag 3:
Flash forward to check-out day, we have our next guests checking in at 4. We get back to the place and they left at like 6 in the morning. Here’s our check-out instructions. Put your dishes away, put your towels in the washer, put the key on the desk, throw away your trash and recycling in the bins out front…that’s it. A team of three people could complete those tasks in under 5 minutes if they were taking their time. Instead, they didn’t do a single thing on the list. They completely failed the check-out process.

Before we get there I text him at 8am letting him know the check out instructions so he calls me and tells me he forgot to read our book and how sorry he was. He also stated he’s been really busy. I apprciate that he’s been busy, as a photographer I know how busy it can get come pinch time. However, with how entitled he’s acted the whole time I’m finding it hard to believe that it was an accident. You’re telling me this is your 4th airbnb and you don’t know about check-out procedures??? Come on guy! This isn’t a hotel, this is our home! Dishes all over the kitchen, used towels all over the place, trash not taken out with fruit flies just starting to hatch. and…

Red flag 4 and the icing on the cake:
They were using our wood finished dining room table as a work station. It was scratched to hell.

We’ve been meaning to replace the table with something a little more durable, so I didn’t hit him up for the deposit because I feel like I should’ve said something…but really? Who uses a nicely finished table as a work station? Would you do that at your house…or your mothers house? Hell no. Plus, Plus! We provide a desk and our kitchen peninsula doubles as a work station. Coffee table included we have enough room for 5 people to work simultaneously without ever touching the dining room table.

Honestly leaving the place messy is one thing, but damaging our property is a whole other animal. I feel super disrespected.

So should I leave them an honest review or am I just being too picky.

Furthermore, because of the rocky start I feel we really went out of our way to make these people’s stay extra nice. Yet they felt like we owed them something.

What should I do? If there’s anything I could’ve done differently I would have not left them beer AND wine. Secondly, I probably should have coached them earlier on check-out instructions. Thirdly, we need to not in our book that the dining room table is not a work-station and if you use it our place mats are required.

Anything else? Should I give them a bad review or let them slide and just send them a message letting them know the things they need to change if they want to keep getting positive reviews.

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Yes you need to leave an honest review. Stick to the facts and keep it short. Future hosts need to know what guests are like.

Let people know that although you went out of your way to provide your guess with a wonderful experience - you had an entitled guest, who didn’t respect your property, damaged your dining table and left your place in a mess.

Why aren’t you claiming for the dining table? I would. Contact him through BNB and confirm with him that the dining table top received substantial damage (they must have been aware of this, but didn’t let you know). Get a quote for a replacement or fixing the top and let him know costs. If he fails to respond you can take it up through the BNB resolution centre.

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Helsi said it perfectly. But you asked if there was anything you could have done differently. Yes, Pay attention to Red Flag #1. Most of the time people who ask for discounts will never cease to disappoint you with their disappointing behavior.

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Hi @amfm,

Scratching the table sounds bad to me. And is certainly very disrespectful. How difficult/expensive would it be to fix? Is it even possible? I’d definitely mention that in a review, at least. The other stuff doesn’t sound like such a big deal, but property damage is over the line in my book.

Oh, and this might be a dumb question, but what scratched it? Laptops? Something else? I’ve not noticed laptops being hard on a wooden surface, but I rarely use them.

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How many people were staying?

Yes, leave them a negative review. Don’t even second guess yourself for another minute. The guy is a complete ass and was disrespectful.

Do you tell people to ask for more Nespresso pods if they run out? Those things are expensive. He probably knew you can’t buy them at a store, and he asked where he could get more pretending that he didn’t know.

You know he is lying about not reading the check out instructions. It sounds like others stayed with him?? What about the other people in the group. So he is saying that he didn’t have them read any of your house rules??

If your dining table is going to get all scratched up, then just don’t note it in a book, tell guests too. My dining table benches are all scratched to hell and I am not sure why. I cannot imagine people putting keys in their back pocket and then sitting on them while they eat. And who would carry change in their back pocket? Maybe a wallet. I think it might be people placing coolers on top. I haven’t figured it out yet. I am lucky that my partner can redo them himself though

I would not let him slide with private feedback. He won’t care. It will not phase him. The only thing that will phase him is if you leave a public review, and now he is worried another host will not rent to him. I would do the sneak attack and wait to leave your review after he writes his, or wait till last minute.

What I would have done differently is charged him for the Nespress pods if he wanted more. They had plenty of Kuerig pods and could buy more of those. But ending up drinking $22.50 just in Nespresso pods. “Oh, you can’t buy Nespress pods at the store, but if you want more I’ll sell you some of my stash for $.75 a piece, and you can just give me cash. How many do you want? You need to come pick them up though.”

I don’t like guests who come through Air asking for a discount. They are willing to pay Air booking fees, yet they are asking hosts to reduce their rate? There are so many ways they can book a place without having to pay service fees to Air.

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I think you’re over-reacting a little bit. Don’t give a guest “caviar” and complain when they want more and it costs you – the Nespresso pods were the caviar. I leave a bottle of wine, but craft beer is more “caviar”, IMHO.

If I owned a “nicely finished wood table” (and I do – I’m woodworker among other things), I would either finish it with a hard acrylic that shows the beauty of the wood; or finish it with Tung Oil and then cover it with a nice cloth cover. Or have a nice glass top cut to fit the tabletop. Yes I use my wood table as a workstation when I’m researching and writing my newest book (lots more space than any desk); no my laptop doesn’t scratch it. So something else was going on there…

Post your checkout procedures in a prominent place – Inside the exit door, on the fridge at eye height, maybe both. Don’t ever depend on guests reading anything you don’t actually read out loud to them.

So, IMHO some of what happened was your issue, some was the guests fault.

That being said, Do give them an honest, negative review.

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While I do agree that giving the guest “caviar” was your choice - his reaction and lack of appreciation, only solidifies what a jerk he is. I mean…you stock him up with more complimentary espresso, and he doesn’t have the decency to text “Thanks, I got them out of the mailbox.”

He showed his appreciation by leaving dirty dishes and fruit fly trash all over the house.

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Obviously the fellow is a bit of an arrogant jerk, but it struck me subconsciously your place @amfm is a bit high maintenance, in these ways: the table, should have a strong cover to it, so it doesn’t tend to get scratched, or like Ken said “I would either finish it with a hard acrylic that shows the beauty of the wood”. Think industrial strength.

Secondly, your ‘check-out process’, that I don’t think everyone has btw: putting away dishes, hmm, I rather check them first; garbage hmmm again since requires finesse for recycling; towels in the washer should be common sense, a hamper will also do. You really do not ask much true, and if these are presented as suggestions then why not, but if they are a source of discontent with guests, then they should be reconsidered. Oftentimes is more of a hassle to ask someone to do something then doing it yourself and eliminates much frustration.

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It seems to me that you are picky. I’m going to play devil’s advocate.

I don’t know where you are or your price range. Let’s say you cleared $800 for the 8 day stay. You spent $20 on beer and and wine and another $23 on Nepresso pods and another amount on Keurig pods. You made $800 on a week that wasn’t booked and spent $60? That seems like a good ROI.

I don’t know how many people stayed there but if there were two people, five Nepresso’s a day doesn’t seem that excessive. You made mention of a crew of 3? Did he book for one and have more than one guest there? Was he the only one booked but his crew came and worked there each day? If you don’t live on site you need to install exterior cameras that will save you a lot of grief later on.

You said it takes a team of three 5 minutes to follow check out procedures. So it takes one person 15 minutes? So you had to do an extra 15 minutes of work? The check out procedures aren’t a big deal if the guest has to do them but they are a big deal if you have to do them. Which is it?

As for the table, it doesn’t seem unreasonable to me for someone to use a dining room table as a work surface. It could also be damaged by people dining on it. Putting hot pans on it, spilling food and then scrubbing it off, spilling wine. I agree with Ken. Refinish the table top and then put a durable top coat or glass on it. Maybe if I saw before and after pictures of the dining table I’d feel differently.

I’d mark him down for cleanliness and not following house rules and I would note that in the review. I don’t like to read reviews about how someone was rude, unappreciative or acted entitled because those are subjective judgments. Just stick to facts.

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By expecting guests to a) be perfect people and b) following check out ‘instructions’ then hosts are creating a stressful situation for themselves.

Some people are jerks, some people are rude - as hosts we have to accept this and live with it. And the more you expect them to do at checkout, the more likely you are to be disappointed when they don’t carry out your instructions to the letter. For example, I think it’s wonderful if guests take out the trash, and most do but with a five hour turnover window, the two minutes it takes me to take out the trash is no big deal.

When guests are leaving, they’re either excited about going to the next place in their roadtrip or anxious to get to the beach to enjoy their last day before they fly home. The last thing on their mind is housework, doing the dishes or the laundry. And they are paying me after all. (This said, most of our guests leave the place in great condition - which I hugely appreciate)

Every host is different, of course. I’ve had guests ask for extra coffee discs and handed them over gladly. It’s all factored in to the price, after all. Same with extra loo paper, paper towel or whatever. And I don’t mind stains on sheets, for example, because they’re going to be washed anyway and pouring in a little bleach only takes a second or two. The entire place is going to be cleaned despite the condition in which it was left.

When I’m a guest, I’d assume that a wooden dining table could be used for laptop work because that’s exactly where I work at home. But it’s a good idea to ensure that most of the furniture and other equipment in the rental is either cheaply replaceable or protected.

So - and this is just my opinion - these guests were far from perfect but only human :slight_smile:

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Reading your title one must ask “will you leave a dishonest review?”

The scratched table? Yes, that was not smart to have such a table unprotected. We all learn these lessons - usually the hard way. But my first thought was “Oh, no, no one knows how to treat real wood”. I was raised with ‘real’ furniture - mostly used items my parents picked up for pennies but then finished into a nice piece of furniture. But most people - not. Wet towels on wood chairs, hot coffee on a wood desk - that’s the norm.

But you have to be a pretty big clod to damage a piece of furniture, and continue to do it, and not mention it to the host. Were they thin scratches in the finish, or is the wood damaged? Just because it’s risky to leave furniture unprotected doesn’t give them the right to damage it and leave without 'fessing up. Claim it.

Leaving all the dishes? Rude. Not reading the instructions? Frustrating. But all part of the game. I try to look at the big picture - you made a nice profit, and most of your guests do the right thing. Your turn to ‘pay’ just came up this time.

Clean it up, leave an honest, but just factual review. Move on.

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I agree with Cabin and am bothered by all the hosts who want to give him a free pass on the review. This was a TERRIBLE guest… Just ask yourself, would you want to host this douche? If not, then the only way to find out he is a douche is by an honest review.

He’s an unappreciative, high maintenance diva and a slob. He thought of our host like a hotel service desk. “More nespresso please.” And didn’t even say thank you. That is shitty. Sorry. And then left a mess and damage? Really? And you guys think the host is overreacting?

Slam him!!!

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Thats why i dont have expensive furniture or sheets, or anything else for guest’s use. I just bought used wooden dresser for 40$. Its pretty large dresser with 8 shelves. It had few scratches here and there, but i could not care less. Overall it looks decent and very functional. I can see my guest puts all her lotions, and computer, Ipad, chargers there , and i already saw more scratches done by her. I am not worried because for 40$ she can scratch it away.
If i had something expensive already i would be sure its somehow protected, may be by a glass cover, or table cloth, or may be some super covering.
We had one host here who we all remember who non stop described her 400$ sheets, and 18 century furniture and how it was damaged and not appreciated by guests. I was reading and thinking, how one can even know from what century host’s furniture is and what value it has. I never bought in my life 400$ sheets, and never will. How a person like me supposed to know that these sheets are 400$??
I will be carefull to my abiliites with 20$ sheets the same as with 400$ sheets, but please, do not put on my bed such an incredibly expensive sheets and then make me responsible for it in case of accident.

The fact that they did no put dishes away, and did not put towels in a wash, and did not take out garbage is frustrating and the usual behavoir, and after i saw my house completely destroyed,and things broken or damaged, i think these “small” issues are just small issues.

With that said, you can definitely leave an honest review.

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We got two separate issues: the ‘jerk’ (and his deserving review and maybe the fact no one may want him, I certainly won’t) and the check-out procedure. Some are wondering, while on the subject, if requiring any guest to do three things perfectly at the ~end~ of their stay is wise. Always best to end on a pleasant note, right?

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amfm, I would leave an accurate and negative review of those guests. The whole point is to inform other hosts of your experience with the guests and that they mistreated your property.

It is good that you are coming away from the experience with knowledge that changes are needed in your business model to lessen the chance of having a similar experience. Your list of “what I would have done differently” is a good start and the pointers from other hosts are valuable as well. We all have our own standards and tweak our rules and procedures on an as-needed basis. We are forever in pursuit of the perfect end-all to problem guests.

Your scratched dining table mirrored an experience I had when I hosted a committee meeting at home. My then teak dining table expanded to seat 12 and was perfect for the group. Everyone brought their files and were mindful of using coasters for their drinks but after they left, to use your phrase…I saw that the table “was scratched to hell.”

I was mystified until I realized the scratches were caused by the metal clasps on the back of the file folders! It didn’t help that files were passed across the table or just being moved around in normal fashion. Was this a case of guests being careless or disrespectful? Absolutely not. They were unaware, as was I of the damage being caused by normal activity.

So it is quite possible the movie scripts, etc., had staples or metal clasps that contributed to the damage. It’s no excuse certainly, and I would seek compensation for the repair, but the surface obviously needs to be protected for future use or the table replaced, as you indicate is your intent. I don’t think having a house rule about it’s use will cut it.

Sorry that the clods took advantage of you by getting you to provide them with additional Nespresso Pods and did not give you due appreciation but you do realize that it’s on you. It’s up to you to set the parameters of what you provide/supply in your rental and if you choose to run it like a hotel and replenish supplies on request, then that may be the normal reaction from guests.

I prefer to maintain a standard closer to the “self-catering” premise. In my “welcome letter” to guests (placed next to the gift basket), I mention that the unit is pre-stocked with an ample but limited supply of [paper products, etc.]. The operative word is ‘limited’ and it lets the guest know that what they see is what they get. It obviously works because in 6 yrs. I have never been asked for more this-or-that.

Many hosts don’t mind replenishing supplies during a guest’s stay so it’s a different ball game from mine. If you also don’t mind and are only bothered by the lack of show of appreciation, then it is something you are likely to encounter more times than not.

As far as the guest not following the checkout procedure, it is annoying but not uncommon. Make mention of it in your review and then chalk it up.

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I think with regards to the Nespresso pods, you’ve left yourself open. Yes, they are expensive, but then it’s very easy for you to respond with “You can’t get them locally, but I’m happy for you to buy some from me.” If you just offer them up, then that’s kind of your responsibility. Yes, it would have been nice to have a text thanking you, but as he said he was busy - it probably didn’t even occur to him. We all like nice manners, but sometimes with Airbnb guests, you’re just not going to get it. I don’t text a hotel concierge when they’ve sent up things I’ve requested - and for some guests, they see us a little more like hotels than we’d like.

The crappy check-out and leaving the place filthy is not acceptable and you can mention that in the review without sounding as though you’re having a personal dig.

In the early days of hosting I took everything very personally. After all, I’d scrubbed, carried, responded to emails in the middle of the night, spent an unnatural amount of time with the lint roller on the sheets, arranged the flower just so in the vase, and then re-arranged it and agonised over which brand of organic orange juice to leave in the mini bar fridge so it looked nice without costing me a bomb. Some guests will appreciate it and notice it. Others won’t. The money I receive is the same. Getting upset about it or pissed about it is a choice and I’m happier when I decide that the thoughtless behaviour wasn’t intentional, I have money in the bank account and the next guests will probably be absolutely delightful.

Don’t assume that his attitude is because he’s making a film. His attitude is just what it is. I have an American starlet staying with me at the moment with her Mum. Not in a hotel as they want to have a genuine experience and feel like a local. They are delightful, polite and there have been no extra demands.

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Of course it makes sense to buy industrial strength guest room items, but I think my point is more about the principle. Even though in my case it was only a $5 glass pan, the guests who broke it were sneaky and dishonest for not telling me. Didn’t give Me any time to replace it.

That meant the next guests in that day had to make due with a cookie sheet because I didn’t have anything else to put in the room.

It doesn’t matter the value of something. If someone is disrespectful with an item, it can be worth $10 or $1000 and the person is still just as disrespectful.

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Great point and I realized this too, early on.

i agree but in this case, i have a feeling that these guests were quite clueless. Many guests have a mentality of renting a hotel. He did not read the rules,and was apologetic. Scratched table sounds really bad… OP doesn’t even want to claim it. my question is why? its an obvious damage, but i think OP realizes that it got scratched because it was not protected enough. when guests are sneaky, its one thing, but when they are clueless, its different

Lol, after 2 guests used 5 Nespresso pods each a day, with no thanks when I only supply them for ‘breakfast espresso’, nobody else gets the caviar now. I replaced the pods with unlimited much much cheaper ones from the supermarket which are unsurprisingly less popular & give all guests the address to the Nespresso store. Of course I have my own stash of Nespresso pods.

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