I almost choked at your last remark on the hardwood flooring (if I wasn’t already getting there beforehand). We do have hardwood floors. Beautiful, very sturdy hardwood that only used to grow over a hundred years ago and doesn’t exist anymore. And if you had any idea of the cost of refinishing those lovely hardwood floors that are worn and scratched and beaten up much more quickly with just a few years worth of airbnb guests, you might think again when making the suggestion in such a droll manner. But you don’t think of those phenomenal costs, because you are not a homeowner. Guests will trump into the home wearing boots filled with sand and gravel, not wipe them properly on the mats provided, because a. It’s not their home to worry about, and b. They might not even be used to beautiful hardwood floors that can get scratched up and damaged (they might live in a house with vinyl flooring or carpet). You don’t think about the incredible wear that takes place in a home, because I believe you’ve never had to foot a bill for such things. But they run into the thousands and tens of thousands depending on the size. Our floors just recently refinished are showing lots of scratches, gouges, and the beginnings of wear. Guests do all kinds of things home owners would never do. Flushing things down toilets that home owners wouldn’t, knowing it is asking for a very expensive call to the plumber.
I’ll start from the top of your ‘tome’ now (haha, that was one of my short posts).
You ask who said they aren’t entitled to the profits and claim I said that, not you. Actually, in your opening post you claim you have rented apartments and tried keeping it the down low. Now, unless I am sorely mistaken, the only person you are trying to keep it on the ‘down low’ from is the owner of said apartments you were renting from and as you did not tell the owners you were subletting their rooms via airbnb, and were ‘always looking over your shoulder’, it seems pretty clear you weren’t sharing the profits, and further were very aware that they would very likely not be so thrilled with your subletting. So it is from yourself that I got the very clear message that sharing the profits was not something you had done, and if you intend to now, you certainly did not say so.
It seems you are unable to grasp the many differences that would effect people living in a building suddenly filled with a rotating roster of tourists with baggage in tow. Unless the host is there on site, guests can and will party all night, and neighbors are forced to call the cops, and it will happen, repeatedly. What do you think many young people hire apartments for anyway? To see the scenery? Of course they plan to party! And party they will. Work nights, it doesn’t matter. They’re on holiday! The host won’t know unless it gets really bad and the cops are called, but they can play it down. This can happen over and over. Damage can occur. More guests can stay than were booked, strangers bought back… All sorts. Read some accounts of what happens. The only time we rented out our entire home (aside from movie shoots), the people that seemed super straight and respectable partied insanely - even while we were still upstairs the first night. They even broke our beautiful dining room table - a huge round antique table with brass lion paw feet. They claimed when we found it in two pieces that they had just been having a quiet game of cards, even though we were up ALL NIGHT because of the yahoo’ing and screaming and whatever the hell they were doing. They didn’t want to contribute to getting it fixed. People, will, party. Especially if you book the whole apartment out.
As for your remarks about people that wear heels that click clack over the tops of people’s heads in apartments? That absolutely can drive a person to distraction. I remember my husband telling me about the apartment he used to have in NYC. It was a beautiful space. Only problem? Every morning, the woman above him would get up early, put on her high heels, and click clack click clack all over the apartment for an hour. He could hear her every movement even with earplugs in. Oh, now she’s getting her coffee, now she’s in the bathroom doing makeup. He had to move out. It really was a case of either get some new shoes, or how about wait until you are about to leave before you put those suckers on. Some people are completely unaware of the noise they make and how it affects other people. We often have those kinds of guests - my least favorite humans. Self absorbed, inconsiderate, unable to see how what they do can make others lives so unpleasant. I have a feeling you don’t recognize how some things can really just make people’s lives hell - and having your quiet neighborhood turned into a tourist trap could easily do this, depending on how, who, where.
It seems as if you believe so long as you’re a winner, it doesn’t matter what you do to win. So what if you lease your friends car, then lease it out to a bunch of strangers he never gave permission to drive it. You’re making a profit! You’re a winner! It’s the capitalists dream. Unfortunately, you’re not really a winner, you’re a jerk, and your friend is going to be very upset when he finds out. You see, you’re friend gave YOU permission to drive the car because he knows you, and he even gave you a good deal because he trusts that you’ll take good care of it, being his long time friend and all. He did not however expect you to go and let a bunch of other people that he doesn’t know from adam drive it. If he wanted to turn his vehicle into a herz for hire, he’d have done it himself and taken the money. Obviously, he only approved you. The same with those people that rented their apartments to you, that you
See where this is going? It’s the same with your apartment lease. They can check up on your background, and decide whether you are good for it, but you nor they get barely anything on an airbnb guest before they book. You don’t even find out a name most of the time, unless you ask specifically. Problems happen all the time. We had a guest try to mess around with our old fashioned water heaters, which resulted in a slow leak into the ceiling and an inevitable collapse - of beautiful old plaster and lathe work. Curved ceilings, not just straight lines. Not an easy fix, and an enormous mess. That’s just one stupid thing a guest did.
In regards to the safety, an airbnb is not the same as a hotel. Hotels typically have security that will remove any unruly guests from the premises. Good luck with getting the police to remove any paying guests from your (actually someone else’s) property. When you have accepted money from guests for them to be on a property, they can do what they like on that property and the police won’t intervene unless you can prove a crime. Unruly behavior, partying (unless other neighbors complain after a certain hour) will result in nothing but a visit to say keep it down. There really are safety issues. A lot of them. It sounds like you are incredibly naive, to think that most guests are ‘quiet, peaceful and pleasant’. Haven’t you spent any time reading around on this forum for a while?
Now to answer your question whether I am a ‘proponent of the sharing economy or committed to its collapse’ (as if I could have any impact on either outcome), for starters, it is not anything to do with a ‘sharing’ economy and everything to do with a ‘making money from personal investments’ economy. No one shares anything, so it’s a silly name. As far as whether I am a proponent, obviously I must be in some ways, because I am presently doing it and making nice side income from it. But unfortunately the big problem with these things and the reason that hotels (that used to be just like airbnb’s today - people would pull into a town, and would find out who lets rooms) came to be, is that without all the regulation, you have all kinds of monkeys trying to get in on the action and doing all tryoes of stupid things to make some extra coin. That is how the hotel industry became regulated you know - so many food poisonings occurring eventually led to kitchen inspections and standards for kitchens that cooked for paying guests, so many stinking bed bug attacks led to clean hotel brands that people could trust, and on and on. In some ways, it’s funny we have gone back to where we started. It has its charms for sure, but there’s always people that will be dishonest. I have a feeling that a host that has already tried to host out of someone else’s apartment and broken the lease agreement, and that seems to think that anyone leasing a car from someone should be able to make a little business leasing that car out to whomever they like without approval from the owner is likely to have an under developed sense of what’s right, and tends to focus more on what suits them. In the world of hosting, trust is integral, and a host that is so focused on themselves at the expense of being unable to see how it impacts others would not make the best host to begin with - all my opinion of course, but since I am an experienced host, having hosted worldwide guests in our home for ten years and a super host on airbnb for 3+.
Perhaps you could save up for your own dream home to host guests in your own airbnb, if that is what you long to do? That way, the risk will be all yours, and I suspect a different attitude will develop.