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Feeling hung out to dry by Airbnb


Sorry, love, but I am in a disagreeable state of mind. Nothing personal.

There are some most excellent comments today, and I will drop the hissy fit long enough to thank each of you.

Air is busy buying up chains and creating opulent new segments, far away from whinging guests and ungrateful cities.

Me? I looked backwards. I started advertising directly to the same people whose housing was being scooped up by Airbnb hosts on a monthly, quarterly, and semi annual basis.

Okay, the timing was good, and I was lucky.
But I will add that there are a lot of really good people out there.

I am grateful for Air’s volume. But in reference to the OP, it has become inconsistent and at times blindly anti-social. People like the OP are getting hurt.


I think this is an interesting point. My STR insurance has a $2500 deductible. So not practical when guests stain or take towels or break something. A deposit would be better for this and I’d rather manage it myself.

I had my last guest smoke cigs in my house (ack!) and they booked via Homeaway and had a STR policy they bought through Homeaway. Af far as I can tell (and the process is very unfriendly to hosts/ owners) the insurance won’t cover breaking of house rules or negligence or intentional misuse or damage. So sort of out of luck there. Pretty lame.


It’s tough because I’m sure Airbnb wants to protect their brand reputation and there would be abuse by some hosts if they let us administer our own deposits.

IDK why Air (and apparently Homeaway) won’t let us enforce house rules with a fine. What teeth does it have otherwise? If you smoke in a room at the Hilton I’m sure you’d expect to see a $200 fee imposed at checkout.


Homeaway you can deduct on the deposit yourself. I’m not sure the process if a guest objects to it. I’ve had to collect twice and it was seamless. The guest funds the deposit upfront.

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There are various settings and one of them you can allow the guest to purchase insurance INSTEAD of a deposit. I just turned that off and require a $1000 deposit. I’m curious to see if it will effect my bookings. The insurance is not a good option for owners/ hosts IMO.


Great idea to offer insurance. But it’s so…ordinary. Air wants glamour to woo investors. Cue in Beyonce.

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I have a rental like yours. Upon a booking I send out an airtight legal contract that they must sign and return with id.
The contract spells out the number of guests, number of cars and all my rules.
It includes the fines for infractions. It meets the laws of my state. ( each state may be different ).
Nobody has ever covered my cameras, and I am very clear about the type of guests I will take.
Consult an attorney and get an airtight contract that scares the bad ones away.
You also may want to install “noise aware”.
I disagree with @KenH because I have been STR for 9+ years with no major infraction nor damages, so I know that a property can be managed. And VRBO existed before Airbnb.
But a property cant just be handed to Airbnb to be the PM and to handle things. An owner needs to be smart, and be hands- on.
Good luck and I am sorry for this problem.


You owe me a keyboard :slight_smile:


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I understand what you’re saying - and it’s a point you’ve made before - but Airbnb lures hosts in with their BIG $1M HOST GUARANTEE. I’m surprised they haven’t been sued for false advertising frankly, because there is clearly a pattern of NEVER making good on that “guarantee.” Its disingenuous at best; fraud at worst.


I agree completely. I don’t expect Air to hold my hand and baby me through every booking and problem guest. I want to deal with it my way in the fairest and most professional way I can.
What I do expect though, is for them to stick to their promise of “we have you covered”. If a guest is an ass and does damage/extra guests/breaks some major house rules/is a creep deviant…whatever. Then I decide to either warn them and boot them or claim, then I’d really like Air to back us up.

More often than not though, our claims are denied, the guest is refunded in full with a sickly message of how sorry they are for the the guest. The host gets slammed with a shitty review and 1 star. We lose stupid bloody Super Ho status and Air send us demeaning messages of how we need to lift our game but that they appreciate all that we do…yadda yadda.
I hate their punitive ridiculous star system so much. BDC’s is much fairer and they never ever tell you you need to improve.
Air do not have our backs. They do not care. They just want their fee.


I love your suggestions. I think I’ll do the same. Thank you.

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So what is it good for? We require the HA guests to purchase it. If it’s not good for damage to my house it’s pretty pointless.


It solely protects a guest, and not an owner. They have to agree to the claim and it must meet the criteria. ( not negligence, not many things, not in violation of contract etc etc ) . It is not coverage for the many things owners wish and fantasize that it covers. You must not rely upon that damage protection,… and you should become intimately familiar with it’s nuances and what it will and will not cover and when and how.


I actually had a group booking last year that refused to sign my contract because they said I was covered under the ABB $1M HOST GUARANTEE. I told them to take a hike and cancelled the res. Not on my watch !


I am asking specifically about this, not Airbnb’s baloney.



$1000 is a really steep deposit. Yes I think that will affect your bookings. You need an airtight contract + a reasonable deposit . ( $500 ? )


You seem pleased with booking - do you get quality guests from this site?
Do you get lots of cancellations?

How do you communicate house rules etc. on that site?


Are you allowed to do this on Airbnb?

I like Homeaway because you attach your rental contract PDF file written by yourself, to the booking request.

Indeed a large house with a pool is going to have more problems than other types of rentals, and a contract like this is a very good idea.


Yes as long as you state it in your description.
Attaching our rental contract PDF on HomeAway is very nice, but unless you have it signed and obtain id, it lacks what you need in court, and sometimes in a credit card challenge. In both instances, and on all reservations everyone should have a signed ( and initiialed ) contract / agreement, and you should have a copy of photo id.
Dont trust any online site to protect your most valuable investment. That’s solely your personal job.


That is SPECIFICALLY what I answered for you @LoneStar. Exactly what I am talking about. The DAmage Protection is administered by a 3rd party. I have collected quite a few claims, but I no longer use it, and as I said: It solely protects a guest, and not the owner. The guest must agree to the claim and the claim must meet Damage Protection criteria. ( not intentionial, not in violation of contract, not many things, etc etc ) . It is not coverage for the many things owners wish and fantasize that it covers. … and they stick exactly to the terms of the coverage. This is the coverage from CSA in SC, " The Property Damage Protection plan is an insurance product designed for guest purchase only. As an owner you may suggest this plan to your guests to help protect them from paying out of pocket for accidental damages caused to your rental or belongings during their stay.

The Property Damage Protection plan is provided through HomeAway, Inc., and administered by CSA Travel Protection and Insurance Services. Homeowners are not licensed to advise, sell or service this plan’s insurance coverage. Please contact CSA for any questions regarding pricing, coverage, limitiations or exclusions." https://www.propertydamageprotection.com/

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