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Dealing with unaccounted guests

Booking.com Guest booked my property for a month. This was a booking for themselves only

Every Sunday i pop over to clean the bathroom, wipe surfaces and change the bed linen and towels

However yesterday the guest stated that they would not be in on Sunday and they requested cleaning on Tuesday instead

Shortly after their message, an unaccounted friend showed up and slept the night

Today (ie the day they were supposed to go out), the guest and his friend are still at the property and i assume that his friend plans to stay another night

Guest has violated my house rules and i am curious on the best way to take action

The guest checks out in one week and my concern is that if i throw them out, they will leave a spiteful review.

And on booking.com hosts cannot even leave feedback

What should one do?

1 Like

Many of us are on all the OTA - ask away…

Thanks debbie

Edited opening post

It’s best to assume that the guest didn’t realise that this was against the rules so therefore, don’t go in with guns blazing. Simply knock on the door and say “I see that you had a friend stay last night. I’m just wanting you to assure me that it was a one-off thing. You see, my insurance and my business license only permits one person to stay so I could get into trouble for this. Thank you so much for understanding”.

Sometimes guests are simply not aware that they can’t have friends over, especially in an apartment, separate wing, granny flat or apartment scenario.

If the guest says that the friend planned to stay for the duration, tell the guests that you’ll be happy to find them a place locally for two people and even call them a cab if you like.

Please PLEASE don’t be held to ransom by the thought of a poor review.

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You didn’t say exactly what the violated house rule is, so I’m wondering what it says and why you don’t allow the additional guest? Is the property too small for 2 guests? Do you charge extra for each guest? Are there local regulations that require all guests to be registered or prohibit more than 1? Understanding that will help you explain it to your guest.

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The guest knows that they are doing wrong because they said they would go away for the day and wont return till Tuesday.

However in reality they have not left the house today.

My house rules state

  1. no unaccounted guest, only registered guests allowed at all times

  2. guests must leave by 21:00 hrs

  3. All guests are to sleep in the bed only eg no sleeping on sofa

My property is a 1 bed apartment

The guests and his friend are both males, so i assume that one may have slept on the bed, while the other slept on the sofa

Why is it your business whether a guest who is renting an apartment for the month has left or not. Change of plans?

You can inquire about the additional person and remind the guest of the rules. Do you have a plan for that?

  • Additional charge?
  • Warning?
  • Eviction?

Don’t bring it up unless you know what you want to happen.

That wouldn’t be my assumption so it just goes to say that unless you know for a fact, don’t make assumptions

Focus on the non-registered guest and if / how you want to handle.

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Actually, that part made me chuckle. :rofl:

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I would just ask the guest to modify the reservation to include his friend. So instead of one now two would be on the reservation. It might be his boyfriend and he slept on the bed and not the sofa. If you would host him again, I wouldn’t be too harsh with him.

It’s a little difficult to know what more to say about this situation because as @Brian_R170 and @HH_AZ have said, it would be helpful to know what the OP’s desired outcome is here. Is it an extra person fee that the OP is after?

My rentals are also one-bedroom apartments and yes, my insurance and registration with the local authorities give the occupancy as being two people. I don’t have an extra person fee because it seems to me that to have one is to say “my maximum occupancy is two people but if you want to bring another, then you’ll have to pay”. That seems to me that I’m breaking my own rules before anything has even started.

I’ve had the occasional couple bring an extra person from time to time and I turn a blind eye. That’s because I only supply the same amount of towels, snacks, bottled water etc. for each couple so I’m not forking out any extra.

Utility costs are the same except there might be a few extra showers if a third person is there but the water is a fixed monthly fee via the condo association so it’s just a smidge of extra electricity. The profit margins are calculated well enough to handle that every once in a while.

I’d also like further details of why no sleeping on the sofa is a rule. Once guests are in my rental I don’t care if they sleep on the sofa, the floor or in the bath.

So @rexbanner if you can give us more details, that would be great.

3 Likes

That rule has me scratching my head simply because it’s completely unenforceable. I’m sure people fall asleep watching television and couples will occasionally have a fight ensuring the couch gets used for sleeping. I’m guessing the rule is because sleeping on the couch will soil or otherwise damage it. Would you also have a no eating/drinking on the couch rule, a no lying down on the couch to read rule, a no sex on the couch rule…? I suppose another reason could be to keep guests from using blankets/linens in other rooms which is more likely to damage or soil them, but that will probably happen anyway since lots of people like a blanket when they read or watch television.

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Me too. We have cream-coloured leather in our apartments so staining is highly unlikely. I supply a couple of throws for sofa use too. My brother, for example, always sets his AC at freezing (or so it seems to me) so his wife and I sit wearing blankets. In Florida. Crazy.

There are also beach towels that could be used at a pinch as sofa-sheets plus I always leave a couple of spare sheets in the linen closets because I don’t want guests waking me up in the middle of the night because they’ve just upset a bottle of water (or worse) all over the bed. The queen bed has four pillows so the sofa-bloke could have a couple of those.

So sofa-dwellers could be quite comfy. And I’m sure that it’s happened in our apartment but whatever guests want to do is fine by me as long as it’s clean and quiet.

I’ve definitely had arguing couples who have probably split up for sleeping purposes. And a few same sex but not gay people who have probably not shared the bed. On a few occasions I’ve had a pair of same sex people and one has picked someone up in a bar or whatever so the pickup has been brought back and the gooseberry relegated to the couch. :wink:

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The gooseberry? What’s that?

The unwanted one! 202020

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Ah. That’s what we in the US call a “third wheel.”

I like “gooseberry.”

Makes me think of “dingleberry.” In the ovine sense.

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I thought the same thing for a second, but the implication is there and the term is quite fitting if you’ve ever eaten a raw gooseberry (the fruit of the Ribes plant).

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Sorry for confusing everyone. It’s an English term, I think, and probably not used much these days.

You Americans use a lot of terms I don’t understand though. I think the one that really puzzled me for ages was ‘crickets’. I was trying to work out Buddy Holly connections. Oh dear, showing my age again… :roll_eyes:

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Spoke to booking.com about my options and they said the following

First, the host needs to report the issue on extranet as ‘guest misconduct’

The host then has two options,

  1. They can ask booking.com to end/cancel the guests stay due to a violation of the house rules

  2. The host can charge an extra fee for the unaccounted guests stay

The customer service agent was unable to specify the extra fee amount. They just inferred that the amount was subjective and ‘up to me’ which was a little strange

Interestingly, no matter which route you take, the guest still has the opportunity to leave you a review.

And as you know, on booking.com hosts are unable to leave guests a review

It seems that you’re concerned that your guess will leave you an awful review. If that’s the case, maybe you might want to consider ignoring the extra guest. It’s not like he stayed there the entire month. Sometimes we have to pick our battles. Is it worth getting an awful review and losing a return booking?

7 Likes

I did not know that and do not use bdc but was considering it. Started getting my listing together but decided to hold off. Is not being able to review your guests a big problem for most of you? In our town most of the listings under bdc are hotels. Is it the same in metropolitan areas?

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