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Excessive laundry by guests

#1

I have no problem with guests doing laundry if they’re staying longer than one week, but I state in my listing that this is limited to 1 load a week. I got an inquiry from a guest who says she’d have lots of dirty laundry and would need to do laundry several times a week to clean her work uniforms.

This is for a 3 month booking, so I can only imagine how much that would raise my utility bills during the peak of summer when we already have high rates due to a drought (not to mention the wear and tear on my machines from 90 loads). I told her I would charge $5 for additional loads over 2 per week and modified the listing to say this, but since this fee wasn’t in the listing at the time of her inquiry, is it enforceable (I haven’t pre-approved her yet)? The limit of one load was already in the listing. I know a lot of hosts charge for laundry, but does anyone limit doing laundry to times of day outside of peak rates? How do you enforce laundry fees without a coin-operated laundry—is it on an honor system with a box to collect cash in the laundry room?

Also, these are a brand new high-end washer/dryer and it sounds like she wants to do more laundry in 3 months than I do in a year. Even with the $5 charge, should I worry about the excessive amount of laundry potentially shortening the life of my machines?

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#2

I did $2/load for a few months but I found out that its hard to monitor because guests don’t pay for it or aren’t honest. Laundry is now off limits completely and I suggest they use the local laundromat. If there wasn’t a laundromat close by, it would be a different story. So far, guests seem happier with this.

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#3

The guest seems to be more trouble than she’s worth. You’ll spend the three months worrying about her utility usage, checking up on her, stressing about collecting the extra money, wear and tear on your machines and every other issue related to this.

When you then factor in the stress of having a three-month guest, honestly I simply wouldn’t accept her. You’re not geared up for guests who do so much laundry so she needs to find a more suitable place.

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#4

Does she work in a hospital? Every germ in the world will eventually be on those uniforms. Give her a plastic basket for work clothes and suggest she have 4 uniforms so she can do laundry when 3 are dirty so laundry now 2x per week.

Or maybe charge a flat $10 a week for unlimited laundry due in cash every Monday.

Don’t worry about the wear and tear on your washing machine. Frequent loads means smaller loads so less stress Also consider how many loads of laundry a family of four must do each week. The machine should be built for that.

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#5

Yeah, I’m kind of wondering the same thing. I can’t imagine she would do laundry so liberally in her own house or if she was paying for every load at a laundromat. I work a lot so she could try to do laundry when I’m not home to avoid the extra charges. Now that I read more into her message, she may cause more trouble than it’s worth since she’s asked for 2 other accommodations—she wants to stay 2 weeks longer than my maximum and she basically told me she’d be bringing a friend into the house to visit (I say no unregistered guests on property). It’s a lot of revenue, but it seems most listings in the area are booked for long term summer visits already, so I can probably hold out for a guest who’s not going to ask for so many extras.

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#6

No, she’s a dancer who wants to wash her sweaty dance uniform every day.

You’re probably right about wear and tear. I don’t have kids and don’t have that much laundry myself, so adding hers would be about what a normal family might make.

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#7

Same concept—she should more than one uniform.

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#8

She obviously doesn’t realise who is in charge. She seems to think that you’re there to do her bidding and change your rules for her. If she’s like that now, just imagine what she’ll be like and a guest for three months. You’re in charge of your own place, who stays there and how they behave when they’re with you. Don’t let her get away with her demands.

It is, but it’s a major headache too. You could have a dozen guests during that time who might all give you great reviews, might become trouble-free repeat guests or recommend your place to their lovely friends.

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#9

Send her a special offer, it will be after the rule change but I would just double the rate and allow the laundy use.

RR

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#10

Already sounds like a guest from hell. I would just say no. Since you’re in a vacation destination you should be able to get guests that aren’t so demanding or want to overstay.

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#11

Have you actually measured the amount of utilities (electricity and water) your washing machine consumes? If you live in the USA, it’s going to average around $0.20 per load. You didn’t say anything about a dryer, but if you allow the guest to use it and it’s electric, it might be another $0.50. Less if it’s natural gas or propane. The wear-and-tear on your machine is probably more significant in terms of cost. Anyway, realistically, I don’t think a load of laundry costs you nearly as much as you think in utilities.

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