Booking Frustrations from Airbnb Hosts

Not sure how many of you are experiencing booking issues but I just read this article on Marketwatch.

I listed my first Airbnb in 2016 in Dallas, it worked out great! I had a lot of success. Since moving to Miami everything has gone pretty well up until about June. I should mention, even though business is going well, it still wasn’t as great as it was were for me back in 2016 - 2019. But still not bad or anything to complain about. More recently, I haven’t had any bookings lined up. It’s basically week to week. I do have one booking for Christmas/New Years but that’s it. We normally go and prepare our home for the next guest, after it sits for 3-5 days unoccupied. I’ve noticed tons of new listings, all of them beautiful homes in the area. It seems many people are having the same issues as us. We are going long term early next year. Just thought I’d bring this up to you guys.


Yours is quite a beautiful property, and so well photographed and described. SO well done!

One thing I didn’t get in your description was saying “For Long Term Stays We Include The Following: . . .” Don’t you include those things in short -term stays? Do you mean “Long- and Short Term Stays Include the Following:”

Anyway, much has been written about the much greater supply of properties in the Airbnb marketplace, and yours fits squarely there. I would think that your property is outstanding in any market.

Good luck with long-term rentals next year!

EDIT: LOVE that bathroom wallpaper and the shower tiles. Everything about your property is stunning? Are you guys decorators/designers?!

Well, there are hundreds of hosts over on the Airbnb CC forum who have been posting since the overhaul of the platform saying exactly that- their bookings basically stopped dead overnight after that “update”, going from almost always fully booked to nothing at all and hardly any views.

While there can be many reasons for a market slump, this has been too widespread and sudden to be something else and just coincidence.

On the other hand, some hosts say their bookings are as normal or even better. For instance, a host in Thailand said her bookings are solid, the best ever, but I’ve also read that pandemic-weary North Americans are travelling overseas in record numbers.

Personally, my normal off season happened to start when that update was rolled out, and I now have all of Nov. and half of Dec. blocked for personal family reasons, so I won’t know for awhile if things have changed for me.

And lots of guests are posting about how they hate the split stay feature, which pops up every time they try to book, with no way to turn it off. They say they will book through other platforms because it’s making their search maddening and impossible.

@HostAirbnbVRBO I read that Long Term info as meaning that long termers won’t be expected to cover their own utility bills, as a long termer might in other places,and that they can expect to have yard and house maintenance people and pest control around from to time to time, rather than total privacy, as a short termer might have. But I agree it could be explained a bit more clearly.

Yeah I wonder if it is just affecting certain markets but it’s interesting to hear what is happening outside of South Florida. According to the article supply has gone up a lot, with demand slumping. It would be great if Airbnb would factor in some sort of seniority if new listings continue to saturate.


Hey! Thanks, yeah we do take care of the property either way. I’m just letting people know who are staying for long periods of time that we wont let the house go. We will still do our part to help with upkeep. I am slowly trying to get into the design game. I nervous but I have a good eye for homes and design.

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You really do have a good eye! Maybe that should become your business, designing homes for owners who want to put theirs on the STR/LTR marketplace. With the burgeoning supply they’ll need to stand out from the crowd.

Seriously, thank you very much. I appreciate it.

What I’d love to see is Airbnb separating owner-run hands-on-host properties from all these corporate listings, property-company managed places that have dozens or hundreds of listings, so guests who prefer to deal with real hosts, have more personalized interaction and maybe hope to find something a little more eclectic and homey than a bland grey modern condo in a resort complex, that looks like 1000 other places, wouldn’t have to wade through so many listings.


I agree 100% because we are just a husband and wife team. I was suggesting the same approach to our local government because unfortunately we are one of those areas where investors are attacking. I don’t think the laws and rules should be the same. But I know that is probably not actually fair or lawful. Idk🤷🏽‍♂️

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My local area is making very difficult for us to have STR because of investors who are letting people do whatever they want once they arrive.


Exactly. It is fair that investor hosts who don’t even live in the area , and have zero interest other than profits, and no hands-on involvement in their property, be subject to different laws, and in fact, some jurisdictions have laws and are creating them, which makes that distinction.
It’s rare for local hosts, whether they live onsite, or a 15 minute drive away, to run strs which are a neighborhood disturbance.

Not only don’t these investor hosts care if their rental makes life hell for neighbors, they don’t even seem to care if the place gets trashed- they are cheaply furnished, and often poorly maintained. They certainly haven’t invested their love and labor into their places.

You just need to keep your voice being heard, and hopefully get other local “real” hosts to join you, to try to make the local powers that be understand that the strs you and other local hosts run are not even in the same ballpark as these pack-em-in party houses.


That’s awesome, it’s good information. I’ve never heard of that sort of separation which should be implemented. Among other laws, times are changing fast. We have lucked out and had 99% amazing guests

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Mike, can you tell us more about what you’re doing marketing-wise? It’s always difficult to offer any sensible advice if we don’t know what’s working for you and what isn’t.

I agree though that it’s hard work at times and yes, there are always new hosts “trying Airbnb”. The good thing is that in my area (also South Florida) they rarely last long

So many people seem to think that Airbnb is a good bet because it’s ‘easy money’. Ha!



I have, too. And I am grateful for that. But don’t sell yourself short- it’s definitely not all luck. How a description is worded to attract the kind of guests that will be a good fit, what you offer, how you vet guests, and how you communicate with them are all factors that contribute to getting good guests. It’s not all luck.

Any host can get a bad guest, and of course I don’t want to be a victim blamer, but often a horror guest scenario, especially if a host has repeated bad experiences, could have been avoided if the host did something differently.


Like I said I’ve been doing this since 2016 so I am not new to Airbnb. It’s been some time now. I have a heathy group of influencers, we also speak about our business with so many people. We network in Different ways through business, social media, friends. I think you can tell by our listing it’s not just sit back, kick our feet up and expect bookings. However I did come across this interesting article that pinpoints discrepancies in Airbnbs business. Basically their numbers are saying we maybe headed in this direction. We had plenty of bookings to start but now it’s week to week. I guess one of my weakest points of the business is I won’t go below a certain number when it comes to price per night. For me there is a sweet spot and a standard. But even in that regard I’ve had success getting bookings at all price rages. So I don’t think price is the issue. I’m leaning toward what the article says.

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So what other listing platforms are you advertising on?
What direct channels have you set up to market your STR business?
Have you invested in developing a marketing plan to help you identify how best to reach guests that you have identified as your target market?
Have you factored in that many areas, STRs are affected by massively increased cost of living increases so demand for luxury items like holidays is falling?

Falling demand is something that is affecting many hosts in oversaturated markets such as yours. And then you have seasonal factors and economic issues that will also affect your listing.

Options are to move your STR business to areas where there is increasing demand or improve your marketing and your listing offer if you want to stay where you are. @MikeL355

If Airbnb factored ‘seniority’ of listings in as you suggest as a listing that is only a year or so old, like yours would go towards the bottom.

I see that as a strength and not a weakness.

Only you (and your accountant) know how much your rental costs you to run per annum and how much margin you need to make

The new hosts who are ‘trying Airbnb’ are usually people who have no experience in the industry but mistakenly believe that it’s an easy way to make money.

They look at local prices and undercut them. If established hosts start undercutting them, then we have the infamous race to the bottom.

So it’s important to keep your head pricewise. Those new hosts will soon go away if they aren’t running their rentals as a hospitality business. Often, they don’t realise that they are in fact running at a loss.

Please let us know about the factors that @helsi asked about and I’m sure we’ll be able to help more.

As I said before, I’m in South Florida too and keep two apartments full years round (and a neighbour’s apartment full for his letting period) so it is possible - don’t despair.



That’s good business sense, IMO. Guests have zero idea what a host’s expenses are. They tend to think what they paid is all going straight into your pocket. Only you know the pricing that makes it worthwhile for you to host and is reasonable for what you offer. I’d rather have fewer guests, but who respect the value of what they are getting, who generally tend to be respectful in other ways, than lower prices just to fill the place every night, acquiescing to discount requests or slashing prices, getting guests who want to pay a price that means you’re working for $5/hr.

And half the time, guests who want discounts, who claim to be on a budget (as if that’s any of your concern), are walking around with $1000 iphones and $200 jeans.


:laughing: Absolutely! We do our job. We provide the best we can, our standards are super high for our guests. I would rather miss a booking myself. There is simply a minimum.

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Well I was suggesting that I have had listings since 2016. We are also on Vrbo. I have taken everything into consideration. I’ve also taken into consideration the article I posed. Myself and others in the area have been affected by slower times. But you are right and I am considering other areas.