Dinged on location.....why is this rated?

I am a newish host in a small county town in Australia, I get 5 stars on almost everything except location and it is driving me nuts!
The 2 sites I have are entire homes, the areas are quiet, safe, in lovely streets … yet 3 stars…, suggestions on how to fix this?
They chose my houses, but they don’t like it… sigh!

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Only thing I can recommend is being very articulate about the location in your listing. Location is the one thing they can control, and yet we get marked down. It is frustrating, isn’t it?


Have you asked these guests why? there might be issues you haven’t considered (or they may just be super fussy)

I used to have an issues with this and adapted my description to emphasise I live in an inner city area while emphasising the benefits of the location.

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This is the most useless metric they have. I’m always dinged on location. No matter how carefully I describe it. I’m in rural Hawaii next to a secluded bay…yet, am I dinged on location because it’s not the five star 4 Seasons?

I think no matter how carefully you’ve described or disclosed if it doesn’t match what they where expecting…ding.

So unfair.


How do I show you my houses?
I would like some feed back… there are only 5 entire houses to rent here with a total of 25 listings in the area.
One is called Ithaca, the other Rosslyn and both are Heritage listed.

Don’t fret. There’s nothing to fix. Guests are responding to what they feel would be their ideal location in a perfect world. Since you’re in a lovely, quiet area with nice homes, it’s not that they’re bothered with. They probably want a Starbucks next door along with proximity to touristy stuff to keep themselves entertained without having to get back on the road.


I think it’s a fair metric, to be honest. Hosts always get their knickers in a twist about it but it’s something that guests want to know about it. I know I do. It’s not simply where you are located on a map but what your neighbourhood is like, how easy it is to get to places, what is there to do locally etc etc. I’m in a city but just outside the centre. I consistently get 4 stars on location and that’s fine with me. I’m happy with that. It could be a lot worse! Nobody is ever going to be perfect, it’s tiresome to see people always aiming for that. Stop it!! People are generally not stupid (they’re really not, no matter what you think konacoconutz ;)) and if they want a place right in the centre of somewhere, they’ll weigh the options and go for a less nice place. That’s what I do - Yeah, it’s not as nice and fancy but it’s central and that’s what I want for this trip. Seriously, guys, there’s so much whining on here!!


Don’t forget that it should also be right next to the beach, but at a price that would be appropriate for Skid Row and it should include free parking.


True. There was a great post once about the ideal location that went something like:
near the beach and with a mountain view
quiet and secluded and within walking distance of 24 hour nightlife
pet friendly but animal-free

EDIT: And a quick search found it:
Regarding the ‘Location’ five stars - perhaps we should just ask Air BnB what constitutes a five star listing?

It might look something like this:

  • Near the airport but quiet
  • Charming rural setting, right in the city centre
  • Peaceful residential area, teeming with night life
  • Stunning countryside surrounded by convenience stores
  • Right by the beach, next to the ski slopes
  • Tucked away and easy to find
  • Off the beaten track but on it
  • Mountain retreat with good public transport links
  • 100% child safe location, i.e. no roads, canals, railways, snakes, bees, buildings, trees, other people, matches, cutlery, internet, vehicles, weather conditions, hedgehogs, clingfilm dispensers, pollen, swimming pools, bacteria, gravity, fast-food outlets, lost toys, etc

I once saw a framed cartoon on a travel agent’s desk. It showed the customer asking the agent–

“I’m interested in a deserted tropical island with a fantastic nightlife.”


It’s sobering to think that Zandra’s Skid row place has better location ratings than me.

Thank you, you have made me laugh! Out of the 5 entire houses to rent, mine are the nicest… no ikea, big places. I can understand if you are dinged because of noise, busy roads, noisy neighbors… but they chose the locations , maybe it needs to be called neighbourhood rather than location.

This is precisely what most guests want to know: Is it safe? Is it so noisy that I won’t be able to sleep?

Both of those are subjective.

Up to a point. If there is gunfire during the night or menacing looking pedestrians begging for change, the subjectivity goes out the window.

Well yes and no. If I book a place in a downtown area that is a bit sketchy and I know that in advance, well ok. But if I book a place that promises to be in the heart of the city but it turns out it’s a dead-end suburb that lacks any charm whatsoever well, yes I would mark it down.

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Some people might pay for that. Oooh, “Experiences” with Airbnb. I don’t suppose that’s what they were thinking of, though.


I used to work on Main Street in Santa Monica which is quite the tourist spot. There were men who got right in my face and asked for change when I went to my car in the beach parking lot. I don’t think most people would think of downtown Santa Monica as particularly unsafe. Also, many people from other countries think all of the U.S. is unsafe because of our access to firearms.

As far as noise, our guests from New York, Beijing, Shanghai, etc. think our house is blissfully quiet. Our guests who live on an acre of land can’t believe we can hear our neighbors converse.

It’s the “truth in advertising” motto we must adhere to. We have to divulge the negative stuff. Although I think Air hosts have evolved and we know better not to sugar coat or just ignore mentioning the crack den next door or that you’re downwind from the meat packing plant.

Have you seen anyone list somewhere and say area is a bit sketchy in the listing ? Or indeed in Airbnb’s description of the neighbourhood? Knowing an area is sketchy often requires insider knowledge… I’ll always remember @EllenN mentioning a place that my LA host had said the listing was near and warning that most Angeletos wouldn’t go to that place after dark. I meanwhile was blissfully unaware …

One thing my LA experience taught me…google an area before you book. Seriously the first and last time I will ever make that mistake …my friend from LA said it gave me street cred. I’ll be damned if I know what that means… stupid probably. Anyway lesson learned :slight_smile:

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