Am i making too much of this?

I have just had a recent guest check out after a two night stay.

Upon entering the property, the whole place stunk of cigarettes and marijuana.

They’d also managed to back up my kitchen sink

Due to the above, namely the smell, i had to cancel my follow up booking

Anyway, the guest left a 5 star review

And I left an honest review (i.e. less than 5 stars)

What i want to know is whether i am being excessive? Should i let it go? Should one expect guests to do things like this?

I don’t want to get a reputation as a host that cries over ‘trivial’ things

My home is a non smoking one. The guest was made very aware of this.

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Making too much? Not nearly enough IMHO! You write reviews for your fellow hosts, not to make guests happy. Hell no guests should not do things like this!!!

I would have given the guest a “Cannot recommend” review – violated house rules about smoking, left such a mess I had to cancel next guest to get listing cleaned up properly.


You had to cancel a booking and lose money!
The guest knew the house rules and ignored them.
Do you want him back?
Do what you need to do to warn everyone else!



You’ve written a review and cleaned up after. At this point you let it go and don’t host those guests again. What you should do is address what you could have differently (if anything) to prevent something like this from happening again. Vetting your guests better?

  • do inquiries have reviews?
  • are the guests new to AirBnb?

If the answers are yes, then you might reconsider hosting only those with positive reviews. If you host those new to AirBNB, confirm with them, prior to accepting their inquiry, that they have read and will comply with the house rules.

Most of my guests are not like this; there are some (more of late) that are new to AirBNB so plan for guests like this, which will likely help you avoid guests like this.


You have every right to be upset. Guest knew there was a no smoking policy. In addition, you had to cancel the next booking to air out the place. I personally would be furious. I hope you left him a one star review.


I’m curious if the next booking was on Airbnb and if you got also screwed by Airbnb for having to cancel.


I’m curious too. Also did you request compensation for the lost rental from the guest who disrespected your rental?


Why would you hesitate to give a scathing review and warn future hosts? Short of damage, this is one of the the most major things they can do!

They violated a major house rule AND you lost a booking from their callous highly disrespectful behavior! F them. 1 stars across the board Review starts with “Would Never Host Again”, followed by detail on Smoking. Definitely check “No” for the “would you host again”

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A reputation with whom?

A few dirty coffee cups left in the sink.
Crumbs on the floor.
Toothpaste splatters on the bathroom mirror.
Some blood spots on the pillowcase.

Ignoring your house rules, smelling the place up with smoke to the point you had to cancel the upcoming guest, and plugging up the kitchen sink are the opposite of trivial.


I hope you left an honest written review, not just lower star ratings. Hosts who don’t use Instant Book can’t see guest star ratings at all- we only have written reviews to go by.

It’s maddening when hosts woosy out and give guests well-deserved low star ratings but some non-commital written review that makes it sound like the guest was okay.

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I agree with comments that you should say that you wouldn’t rent to this person again. I have been blessed with few real problem guests and overlook a lot. However, something like smoking when it makes you cancel is big. When I am searching to stay somewhere I appreciate the hosts who write balanced reviews stating the negative facts, but occasionally noting that the guest did something right. Maybe this guest didn’t have anything that you could be positive about. For lesser transgressions I usually reduce the review but write comments in the private comments for guests stating that they need to pay attention to a rule or read a description better or something like that in order to insure good reviews and acceptance by hosts.

Another reason for honest reviews of guests is that, for example, I was looking for a place and read that you were angry that they smoked, I would either be happy to book your place (because you inferred that you are very diligent about keeping it clean) or I would be dissuaded because I smoked and did not want to book somewhere that was actively negatively reviewing smokers.

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I had this happen with an older couple. His “herbs” were so pungent - and he stank so badly, that I had to cancel my guests for a week while I tried to get the smell out of the room.

I did a “would not recommend” and “violated house rules.” As a host, I want to know that these people don’t respect the property.

write an honest review - violñated house rules - guest smoked on-premise although this is clearly marked as non smoking - also used the sink as improper waste disposal - one star
and since I use O2 generators - no more problem with smells - I run the thing for half to an hour - flood the house -air for 10 minutes - after that no more smells of any kind - fish springs to mind… or obnoxious perfume …

Well you will all be pleased to know that i left an honest review

I used the ‘sandwich technique’ where i leave a positive, a negative and then another positive

Positive - guest was friendly
Negative - broke house rules, backed up sink
Positive - apart from the above negative points, house was left in decent condition

I think that many hosts are weary of leaving brutally honest reviews as it could affect business moving forward

People reading your reviews may be apprehensive to book for fear that you will be difficult to please a dictator etc

Or just someone that will be out to ruin their reputation when that’s far from the case

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Another positive, is that this experience forced me into investing in an ozone generator. It got rid of the smoke smell within 2 hours

Can’t believe, I never knew such an item even existed

I recently had an Indian guest cook curry. The smell forced me to close my calendar for two weeks, while we washed, steamed, bleached and deodorise every item in the house

As the smell still lingered, we decided to repaint the house. Huge time and cost.

However, if i had the ozone generator i am confident it would have removed the smell of curry.

Eh? Reviews are for future hosts, not future guests. They see the reviews left for us - not what we leave for scumbags who stink up our place.


@rexbanner, what kind of ozone generator did you purchase? Thanks!