I’m wondering how AirBnB is going to handle this situation. This is going to be a huge mess for guests and hosts I’m sure.
Could be. Problems for a lot of people and a lot of businesses.
But better, I suppose, than wildfires.
My husband and I had a reservation to stay at an Airbnb in Santa Rosa CA two years ago at this time. We reserved it a month before the wildfires started.
On the day before we were scheduled to leave Ohio, the edge of the evacuation area was the back property line of that Airbnb house. Relatives of ours live a few blocks from there. They said the air was basically unbreathable because of smoke. My doctor told me not to go there.
We canceled our whole West Coast trip. Everyone (airlines, train, ferry, Airbnbs in other locations) gave us a refund except the Santa Rosa Airbnb. I realize that they weren’t required to refund us. But it would have been nice if they had.
We ended up going there six months later. By then, we couldn’t find any evidence of that Airbnb. I’ve always wondered if it was damaged by the fire. Fires did get into that area.
We have a guest coming Sat. and have blocked Thurs and Fri. Hopefully (they say) the high winds will be blown by Sat. We have no power already due to repairs. We have a generator and propane, but they are not necessarily for the rental, but for us. I wouldn’t want candles in the rental, so I would rehome and refund.
I live in an area that they will cut the power in high winds. I never refund for it. I have battery operated lanterns and flashlights for guests. It is out of my control and it has only happened to a couple of guests and they did not complain. That being said I am just finishing up on a new cabin and I will now have a generator that will power all 3 buildings on my property, including a well and electric gates. Hopefully no complaints about the noise…
Our Airbnb has guests in there currently. Our city was not affected but the three cities adjacent to us were. Airbnb sent us a guide to the map of outages and tips. They also suggested reaching out to our guests which, of course, we had already done. We got lucky.
To be honest this is one of the reasons why we decided to sell the house. PG&E is a nightmare. The cost of utilities has gone up dramatically in the 4 years we’ve been hosting. All solar would require us to redo the roof first. And it’s been getting significantly hotter each year as well. To the point where we’d probably need to add a second AC unit upstairs. It just wasn’t worth it.
Welcome to Airbnbing of the future. Wise hosts are preparing now to adapt.
Yes. Imagine your competitive advantage of you have a generator. (Assuming you don’t have to evacuate.)
And I was just reading that those WITH solar are also without power because of how they’re integrated into the power lines. They can’t risk the solar pushing energy back into the lines (danger to linemen who think the line is unpowered). So solar isn’t a recipe for energy independence unless you’re truly off-grid.
Or if you have solar energy storage that doesn’t require it to go through the cleric to be used…some people hav enough options simultaneously, so it’s not a complete loss.
Is cleric an engineer term or are you referring to “praying it will work?” LOL.
Power outage update:
We had no power from midnight Tuesday to sometimes middle of the night yesterday (Wednesday). My guest who was planning on coming in Thursday for 4 nights canceled is trip. I refunded him his reservation and talked to Airbnb about refunding him the service fees.
I feel lucky I had no guests during that time, because that would have been interesting. At least, I had hot water and a stove with gas. But nights and mornings were cold. The gas stations were packed and then closed. Stores had no more water, hard to find candles and no battery operated radios either. ATMs also had no more cash. Very interesting to see how people dealt with this.
My neighborhood had a bunch of generators going at nights. Frankly, made my dark sky experience a bit annoying.
The weirdest was how beautiful things were here (I’m in Humboldt County). Sunny, warm and windy, but beautiful enough to sit on a patio with beer and burgers.
I am privilege and lucky, not everyone will have it this easy. If you are just experiencing the blackout, hope everything goes well for you. Check on your friends/family and be safe.
We are splitting the sold property into two. One is for us to live and the other will be another Airbnb in the mountains closer to Southern California. We are planning for a smaller, more efficient space from scratch. Solar, batteries, new roof, and as low maintenance as possible.
In California, not just PG&E but SoCal Edison as well does not allow you to sell your solar back onto the grid. But our other home in Palm Springs would require at least 3 batteries to take it off grid, which is a lot of money upfront. Especially since we just paid to respray the roof from the 100 year flood we had in February. The nice thing about our area is that at least the power lines are underground. A feature we did not overlook when first purchasing that home.
Yes for our other Airbnb we have solar but we have to pay SoCal Edison about $15/month to use their grid. And because we cannot store more than 99% of our usage, any overage from not enough panels gets charged via SoCal Edison as well. Last year we paid them an additional $500. We tried to add more panels but Renova the solar installer said we cannot rent them as we had been doing. Any additional would need to be purchased. Which means we’d have to pay a separate fee to service those extra panels that aren’t covered by our rental contract. It’s kind of a racket. Our dream to have every property off grid.
PM me if you are looking in Idyllwild…
Was autocorrected from electric!
Lake Arrowhead but not far from you neighbor!
Our power went out last night. The guests that had been here for two days were ok with it. They just left a bit earlier this morning. We let our Thursday night guests decide if they want to cancel. They decided to come anyway as they couldn’t find something comparable.
Only a one night stay. I’m hoping the power is restored soon.
Idyllwild closer to your Palm Springs place, and it’s a small town not a small city! I am a real estate broker here:)
Here is a good article talking about the power outage that touches on hotels and lost revenue from cancellations.
The Saddle Ridge fire was fast approaching last night at 3 am. It jumped a 16 lane freeway! So I was up in the middle of the night hosing the dirt around Tiny Tiki and the house, putting anything flammable inside the house, scrambling out on the neighbors land to view the fire and monitoring the news coverage and local fb page. Now Fri 9:36 pm; its practically out and did not get near to us. But there were questionably if necessary evacuations 7 blocks away.
Our guests for this weekend (Sat and Sun) are waffling about coming, and I almost wish they wouldn’t. I’m exhausted and we will have much more set up than usual to do:( I think they are a little high maintenance want a “perfect stay” etc. What to do? Tomorrow I will send photos of smoke/no smoke, wind direction and wind speed info to them…
As far as power outages in future I think I will cancel. But RRR and the multiple battery lanterns are an offer some guests won’t refuse…