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Feedback please: Guests w. visitors


#1

Hi All –

I’m new to the forum and wasn’t able to search this topic successfully.

I’ve been a host for over a year, I love it, and I’m in the 95+% category as a host. I love making people at home and I’ve been very fortunate to have mostly amazingly kind and friendly guests over and over again. I rent a private room & bath in my home, and share the living room and kitchen with guests. The bulk of my guests have stayed 1 month or more, and less than half a week or less.

I currently have a very nice couple in their late 50s, who are visiting their son & daughter-in-law (who live nearby), and are staying with me. All are very friendly, and a seemingly loving, close family. They have taken to beginning and ending most days (4 of 5 so far) here at my house, with 3 or 4 “movie nights” where both my AirBnB guests and their kids watch television and movies until anywhere from 10pm-midnight or so, and visit, eat, drink, etc. It’s often a little loud (happy loud), and I just close doors and ignore it, but we’ve got a few days left and they seem intent on making my house the family gathering spot for their stay.

Tonight, I arrived home to another gathering, with mud tracked into the house. I asked folks to wipe feet when they come in… I spoke with the father after this evening’s gathering and let him know that I hadn’t expected to be hosting both them and their family gatherings, as it was never discussed. I said I felt it was perhaps inconsiderate to never check with me, especially since I wasn’t able to use the shared space myself in the evenings since they’d arrived. He kindly apologized, but offered neither a solution - nor to cease the gatherings. I asked if his kids had a television and he replied that there were a lot of people at their house, so it was inconvenient. I reminded him that I had agreed to rent the room and shared space to he and his wife and wasn’t aware that there would be visitors every day.

So I didn’t ask him to stop, I didn’t care to be an authoritarian, and I considered that perhaps he might be a little tipsy and not in a place to communicate well. I said I’d be glad to discuss the matter further if he had anything else to say later.

I’m guessing I’ll wait until tomorrow to revisit the topic. It’s not that their kids aren’t welcome - it’s just that I find it really inconsiderate to take the common spaces over without any discussion or planning, etc. I’m an accommodating host, but I feel like not consulting me is inconvenient, and a little rude.

I realize I need to add a clause to the house rules along these lines: “visitors are welcome with prior approval”. Any other feedback anyone has is welcome!

Thanks, and happy hosting!!!


#2

Yep, as I learned last week, when my guest babysat her toddler grandson all day and into the evening, it only takes one inconsiderate guest to make you realize you neglected to cover something in your house rules! Is your space listed as family/child friendly? Is your home child-proofed? If not, then those would be a good reasons to exclude children under 12 (or whatever age you decide – that’s what I did), if that’s what you want to do. Is your home listed as acceptable for gatherings? If not, then I’d bring that up to your guests. The clause you mentioned is a step in the right direction. Perhaps add that only 2 visitors are allowed in your home at one time. I recently added this house rule: “Only your pre-approved visitors are allowed on property.” Establishing boundaries is important, especially when it’s a shared space. Being too nice will only cause you more headaches. Best of luck!


#3

Yup I agree with MV on this one! Tough lesson to learn…


#4

Well, let me be blunt…Why welcome ANY additional visitors? They are getting value added use of your house for free. And putting you out with their noise and intrusions.

Make it clearer than that: “only your approved and registered guests allowed on property.”

People not a part of your agreement present liability and security issues to you.

I had to learn this one the hard way, but have set firm boundaries on this matter, and have been so happy with the results! No problems since I made that a firm rule!


#5

Tonight if you get home first you sit right in the middle of that couch and turn on the tv, and keep the remote in your hands. Reclaim your space!

If they are already there for movie night again when you get home, then ask for the remote and excitedly say you are watching such and such and have been waiting all week. Then sit right in the middle of all of them so it is really uncomfortable and awkward. OK…just kidding but I would be tempted to do that. It is just plain rude for them to do this.

It’s kind of the same with roommates. You know the ones - all of a sudden you are also living with their significant other too. Instead of okaying it to take over the living room one night, they are there on the couch every single night pawing and kissing all over each other. And then you feel like the third wheel but you really live there!

I wonder if the adult children are Air hosts themselves and renting out their space. I mean who is taking over their house that it is more comfortable to hang out at your house?

I’m with Kona - there is no need to allow visitors at all in a shared space. There is no reason for guests of guests to be hanging out in your living room, etc. Don’t worry…you won’t sound like a meanie or anything. It’s too bad guests have to be treated like little children. It would be one thing if they would have asked permission for 1 movie night. But to do this night after night just goes to show that guests will abuse someone’s hospitality. It is plenty that you allow paid guests to use your kitchen and living room. Axe future visitors!


#6

Great feedback, everyone - thank you! I’ll be modifying my policies using your suggestions!

This morning, they very solemnly and dramatically checked out?!?!?! I attempted to have a conversation with them, but they seemed unreasonably embarrassed. All they said was “this is our first time, we didn’t know”. I told them they didn’t have to leave, to which they replied “yes, we do”. I’m choosing not to take on their shame, and I’m moving forward with a good lesson learned.

I think perhaps they are very immature people and don’t communicate well. I called AirBnB to make sure everything was okay, and they said it sounds as if I’m fully okay.

Any suggestions on what to do when it’s Review time???


#7

Well the most important thing first. I hope you did not miss the semi-finals of Dancing with the Stars last night because their mud-caked family gathering took over your living room! :slight_smile: [Go Bindi!]

Next. The review. Because they apologized and " are new at this" I might personally skip the review… if you want to say something, however, don’t do it until the last minute. If you leave it first, they could hit you with something. Wait until the last day of the review period-- midnight in the guest time zone. Call Air to find out this exact time so you are ready.

If you get a review first, I would then just do it. Be honest. Tell it like it is, and add that they apologized so that they can continue to use Air in the future.


#8

Oh wow…so the Dad finally told the wife and now she is all upset. So I guess some newbie guests really do assume that if they have “access” to a space then that means the host will hide in their room so guests can take over kitchen and living room.

I would not leave a review first. They may just let it go and not review you. But if you initiate the review then Air will prompt them to leave you one…and doubt it will be pretty.

Now I kind of feel a little bad about what I wrote before. But are these people of a different culture than you?? It sounds like Air really needs to make it more clear if guests are so confused as they think a host should hide in their room. When I first looked at listings years ago (before signing up) it seemed fairly clear to me that you can use the common space but not just take it over. Like maybe if the host leaves for work in the morning, then guest can relax and watch the news on TV if they want.

Honestly between the parents and adult children, I am surprised not one of them felt it a bit rude to not at least check in with you about the common area.


#9

One would think, cabinhost…

The father actually said “we didn’t think it would be a problem,” and I said “but you didn’t bother to ask…” I don’t fault the children - I just considered who taught them about life…

They are actually “from my culture” - Ohio… :wink:
I’m in Austin, TX for the last 40 years though.


#10

I had guests like that once but that once I will remember long. They were all over my house, cooking, watching TV , laughing for hours in my living room. There was always noise, yelling, door slamming. I was hiding in my room. Big mistake. Since then I never had anyone even close but now I would act just like always without altering my every day life. If they want to hang out with their kids they should rent the whole house not one room and occupying the whole house with no room for you.
We don’t have TV in every roomyhat we rent out. No one usually watching TV in a living room, everyone travel with IPads . Yesterday I had 1 guy who came late around 10 pm. Without taking his shoes off, it was crazy rainy outside he went onto my rug, turned on Tv pretty loud and started watching a game. I did not wait even 5 min. I went downstairs, pointed to his shoes and said please take your wet shoes off, especially on a rug. Then I said I have other guest in a house, it’s almost 11 and he is probably sleeping. We have to wake up early. He goes, but I really wanted to watch that game. I said, I sm sorry I can’t have you disturb anyone at this hour, there is a sport bar around the corner.
He was not happy about it . But I learned my lesson. I am not going to let inconsiderate guests to take over my house. Especially if there are other guests present.
I actually read in someone’s rules about limited use of shared areas. He worded it like this: please remember we live in this house and it’s everyday life for us where we have to wake up early for work. We need our privacy and a full use of our house, please arrange with us when you want to use pool and outside area.


#11

Oh, now I realize the “children” of your guests were adults. They acted like they were staying in a hotel, which is likely because they are new to Airbnb. I’m glad they expressed regret for their behavior. I’m starting to think of house rules more as host boundaries.


#12

Yana… the stories you and others tell who share a full house are beyond belief. I cannot imagine doing this. Marching into someone’s home with dirty shoes and taking over the living room and watching the game. Like they owned the place. Not even asking you.

Just. Plain. Beyond. Rude.

I agree with using the limited use of house rule… Definitely!!! Make it clear! So the clod doesn’t think he gets to do that just because he paid you $59 for a room!!!


#13

Ah gosh this all sounds horrible. I hope this never happens to us!


#14

KJ… Make sure your rules are very very clear. It’s a fine balance though between having TOO MANY RULES (as a popular bumper sticker in the States says) and having not enough. I’ve gone through the ones that appear on the AIR site and honed out all but the most important. Don’t let that list of RULES drift over the ten mark. Six or seven good solid, reasonable rules should do it.


#15

Kirsty_Jane, I’ve had 18 guests in the year I’ve been doing this, and its only my second issue. Definitely not a major thing either (to me, although I think some people might be seriously upset). I try to handle things before they really get to me. The other issue I had was with a person who was traveling to get over a breakup and was in a very dark place. Not a dangerous or even inconsiderate person, just in a dark personal place, depressed. Still, not a major issue.

The other 16 people have been very kind, interesting, pleasant, considerate - and have even made my home feel more “homey”… On the whole, being an AirBnB host has been a truly rewarding experience, and has given me an even more rosy view on people!


#16

787… Ok how much did they pay you to say that?
Just kidding. :slight_smile:

I’m in it for the money honey. There, I said it. And I meant it. :slight_smile:


#17

I’ve updated my house rules as follows (I had only the first one before):

  • Please smoke outside, drink in an adult manner, and keep illegal stuff out of the house.

  • Please park on the street directly in front of the house. You may park a bicycle on the back porch or lock it to one of the posts on the front porch overnight. Please don’t leave it out front during the day.

  • Hot Water in your bathroom will take about 5 minutes to warm up (it wasn’t added to the home until the 80s). The shower pressure is not very high, but I’ve not received any complaints about it.

  • Feel free to use the dishes, glasses, pots & pans, appliances, etc. in the kitchen. Please clean up after yourself (dishes, appliances and surfaces), hand wash/rinse your dishes and place them in the dishwasher. I’ll run the dishwasher when its full.

  • Please keep the doors locked all times.

  • Visitors are not allowed unless approved at least 24 hours in advance.


#18

Hehe, what’s not killing us makes us stronger :slight_smile:
Another guest today: girl from Denmark. “We have so much food, we are going to cook all night long” was texted to me 5 minutes before her arrival.
I felt my heart is pumping super fast, my blood is boiling and I am about to burst into 1000 pieces.
I took several deep breaths and answered calmly: have you read my rules and a VERY detailed description about using my kitchen?
To make the long story short, the girl kept on insisting to that she will only do light cooking including tomato sause. One hour before I cleaned my kitchen spotless. I had an image of her tomato sause splashing all over my cabinets, stove and marble floor. Ok, in someone’s books tomato sause is light cooking which in my books takes at least 45 minutes to simmer.
Ater failing to convince her to find a different accomodation, I called Airbnb and they cancelled it for me right away without penalties. I was advised to explains even more that a light cooking means something that is under 15 min. Also , I was advised to put in 2 more different places not just under rules the description of my idea of light cooking.
Hope that will help.
I am being stubborn of still allowing guests to have access to my kitchen.


#19

Agree, I had almost 60 guests and only couple of them were not suitable for my home. The rest I enjoyed.


#20

Yana, my gosh, “cook all night long?”

I was sitting here feeling your anxiety, feeling my own build up on your behalf… and reading about the tomato sauce!!! No way! I get stains everywhere when I cook with tomato sauce!

What the hell is up with people who want to do so much cooking when they visit Florida!!! What happened to going out to eat while on holiday?? :slight_smile:

I actually think you got good advice from Air. Really, give them time limits. Light cooking can be defined in many different ways, can’t it? Under 15 minutes is a great description.

Yes!! You are being a bit stubborn. :slight_smile: One day I am confident that we will see you come here and tell us you’ve had enough and you’re just going to put a microwave and kettle in their room! And still get the same amount of bookings!!! :slight_smile:


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