Encouraging 5 stars

I’ve received a few 4 stars recently, and being an experienced host i know that some people are jsut picky or have a different rating scale. However, i’d like to encourage 5 stars as much as possible, both through a good stay and through educating guests.

Some of the ideas i have are having a rating explanation in the guest book, checking in with the guests during their stay, and leaving a guest feedback book.

What are ways that you work to get 5 stars?

copy of this article in the house manual…


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I like that! I am going to do the same!

I try to offer a perfect stay. My bathroom is less than two years old and the original room it’s attached to is clean and painted. I’m always making improvements. Just today I put a better space heater in the room. I think I have advantages that not everyone can have. If two rooms share a bathroom then that bathroom is not going to be sparkling clean 100% of the time. If you have an older home things might look dirty even when they aren’t.

Making clear to the guest that Airbnb considers anything less than 5 to be unsuitable can’t hurt.

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I haven’t done this, but I have read about hosts who pre-empt good reviews by writing to just-departed guests saying “This is the great 5-star review I’m going to write for you [“amazing guests, outstanding human beings”] I hope that if you really enjoyed your stay you will feel able to reciprocate. Obviously if you have any suggestions as to how we can improve the guest experience, we would welcome your communicating this to us privately.”

The only time I have done anything like this was with guests who I knew had had a fabulous time (they told me!) but were busy parents of a young baby who I felt might forget to review at all.

Many of us would feel unconfortable at being so “pushy” but also perhaps we have to go beyond our comfort zone sometimes!

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If I have guests that I click with, like the ones who just checked out, I say…

Thanks for leaving the apartment in such great shape! I’ll write you a five star review, and hope you can do the same. I’m just one five star away from making Super Ho! So a five star really helps. Thanks for staying and have a safe trip back!

That being said, nothing ever changes on my ratings. I still am at 4.5 stars no matter how many fives I get so I think I am actually stuck.

I always send good guests a message after they leave saying ‘thanks for coming blah blah blah. I’ll be leaving you a five star review!’ And 100% of the time I’ve had one from them in return

How does one go from being a regular ho to a super one?!


Super Ho?? Is that an added amenity you provide to get all 5 star reviews? LOL!


Bahahaha. I stole “Super Ho” from my buddy @J_Wang. Cannot take credit for that gem! :laughing::laughing:


Did the 4 stars guests said why they took down a star?

In my house manual I have a section called “Reviews” where I ask guests to leave reviews and point out that 5 stars doesn’t mean a 5 star resort in Phuket but an “A” while 4 stars is usually taken to mean a “B”. By me at least. I get 95-99% 5 stars for everything else but I was still getting only 80% 4 stars for cleaning even after I gave up using one cleaner (the one time I got 1 star! for cleaning I explained the guests issues and she sort of shrugged her shoulders and kept on cleaning the same way) and the other slightly better one decided to charge me $80/clean when she found out I was an AirBnB host (which was pretty much what I charge per night) and thought I was being overly demanding when I said I didn’t want her cleaning at 9am when guests were eating breakfast, Anyway i do it myself now and it is not perfect, mainly because I am disabled. So after a run of 4 stars for cleaning I asked a friend to check and found out I wasn’t cleaning the lights above the bed where dust and cobwebs had accumulated because I clean in daylight and so they aren’t turned on and nobody mentioned it. Okay, live and learn, always happy to improve.
But I also added a section in the manual telling people I am disabled and clean standing up wearing leg braces (sounds like some Victorian torture device for kids with polio but really just kevlar supports to prevent foot drop) and so can’t bend over much or kneel down at all. Most of them will have met me when I am on crutches or in my wheelchair so it is possible they think I therefore must have a cleaner. This includes cleaning the bathroom, dusting and vacuuming as well as changing the linens and washing them. I ask them to “please take this into consideration when rating cleanliness”. Since then 16x5 stars in a row. I feel a bit guilty and was getting mostly 5 stars for cleaning before anyway but I think this sways the nitpickers who can see that I am really making a 100% (maybe even 110%) personal effort.

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I had 86% 5 stars and asked the one that give me 4 star what i could improve, and most of the answer was nothing and that everything was good and that they enjoy their stay and would come back. So it was clearly needed for a rating explanation.
So after every guest leave, i send them this message.

Hi, I hope you had a good stay at our place and that you will visit us again. We enjoyed having you here and will surely leave a positive review.

A 5 star review means that you had no problem or that any minor problem were resolved.

Within 6 months my 86% 5 star rating went up to 91%

Yes, it’s really about educating guests about the rating system. We have a welcome letter in their room that explains it saying ;

"Airbnb’s star rating system- Some people are confused about this subject. It’s understandable because in hospitality a 5 Star rating is only given to the finest hotels and resorts. Airbnb’s system is different from that. In order for us as hosts to get and maintain our Superhost status, we need to get 5 star reviews at least 80% of the time.

5 stars means everything was good. If we fall short in some way, that’s when you would deduct a star. Some folks who have stayed with us were very pleased with everything yet only gave us 4 stars. That review actually hurts our rating. It is our goal to earn a 5 star review every time. If we fall short in any way, please let us know while you are still here so we can try to rectify it. We always welcome constructive advice on how we can improve."

Since using this, virtually everyone gives us 5 stars.


I’ve also had no luck with cleaners but I don’t have a disability, just s messy son and full time job. Kudos to you, sounds like a real challenge for you to clean an Airbnb, I personally am very impressed and hope your business venture keeps going up and up -:):heart_eyes:

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