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Commercial use of listing?

#1

My most recent guest booked for 5 adults for 4 nights. On the second evening of the reservation, I messaged her to see if they needed anything. The guest replied that everything was fine and asked if there was another jug of water for the water dispenser. Before check-in, the dispenser had a full 5-gallon bottle plus 2 gallons inside the dispenser. I brought over a full bottle and put it on the dispenser. While there, I very politely told her that I had never before had a guest use so much water but I’m always interested in guests’ needs.

She told me they worked for a non-profit and were holding face-to-face meetings in the house. Four of the guests, including the guest that booked, came in from other areas of the country and one was local. The local guest was a single mother and it was harder for her to travel, so the 4 others came here for face-to-face meetings. Only 4 guests slept in the house and only 5 guests were ever in the house, so they were true to their reservation.

Other than consuming about 10 gallons of water and 1.5 lbs (!!!) of coffee in 4 days, they were average guests.

I’m wondering though if this would be considered commercial use and if there’s anything I should be concerned about regarding Airbnb policy, insurance, etc.

#2

Wouldn’t bother me.

One way to look at a guest ‘over using’ freebies etc is that when you consider all the other guests who under use freebies, a host will pretty much always be on the right side of their expected freebie budget. :slight_smile:

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#3

Airbnb claims they do a form of background check now on guests. They recently bought a company that does that. I would throw it back on their policy if an issue comes up

#4

If they were using it for commercial purposes (they were) they should have told you.

In the vast majority of cases I would have charged extra for commercial use (a meeting room would have been a tax deductible expense they can claim).

I don’t believe Airbnb cover commercial use in their T&C but you would need to check.

#5

I don’t understand how a non-profit can be commercial. But as long as people aren’t doing anything illegal, messy or noisy in the rental, I don’t mind what they get up to. :wink: I don’t see it as any of my business, really. Or Airbnb’s, come to that.

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#6

Hi @jaquo not for profits are big business. Think Amnesty, Oxfam. Plan International, Greenpeace.

Whether it is a not for profit or commercial organisation if they are using the listing for a business meeting, (which these guests were), then arguably it would be using an Airbnb for commercial purposes, just as if a photographer booked a place for a commercial photo shoot, it would be being used for commercial purposes.

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#7

Hell , I would welcome that type of booking on a regular basis, additionally I would let them know that I prefer to book them outside of the platform in future & make an effort to secure future stays.
Is it any different to a booking that is for work purposes?
In my area bookings are down for all ABB hosts & we have considerably fewer hosts than 2 years ago, I have no idea why stays are dwindling across the board. I live in an area that has diverse tourism activities year round.
It would have been a rough winter if I had not secured stays outside of the platform or declined “out of box” reservations.

#8

It didn’t bother me, either. They used maybe $10 in consumables more than other guests, but no stained towels or other damage, so overall, still very average. They used only one of the ten 0.5L disposable water bottles I left for them, they put all their recyclables in the proper bin, and they even switched off the A/C when they checked out.

#9

It’s a bit of a grey area, isn’t it? Because we’re in a very quiet location, I’ve had guests who were writers and have found our place an ideal place to work. I’ve had professional artists too who’ve painted the landscape.

#10

This is mostly why I asked the question. I was hoping somebody knew. I start researching it on Airbnb’s’ website.

#11

For my house rules this would fall under “parties, get-togethers, gatherings, meetings or shingidgs”. People always try to be slimey and say something like 'its just an assembly of X many people for Y purpose" and don’t want to pay the event fee.

For these guests, I still wouldn’t charge an event fee however because its just 5 guests. My fee is more for events with guests of 8 or more. I have requests for parties of 25 people which means probably 75 will show up. Thats when I need a non-refundable $500 fee. I know it sounds a little unreasonable but the other option is to just not allow events or parties. Thats just given my neighborhood and how close I am to my neighbors. If I actually had a party barn or trailer and this was a permanent vacation rental, sure.

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