Thanks so much!!! wanted some confirmation and you were very through… THANKS… let me know on your next review…
We have just become AirBnB (ABB) hosts and it is not quite what I expected! (Hence joining this forum.)
We have a number of observations and would appreciate all feedback;
- I was of the impression that one could check potential guests but, other than extremely basic FaceBook (FB) info, I have not been able to see any Host reviews etc. Our first guest turned out to be great but his FB info was garbage - not his proper name or location. Handy as a chocolate tea-pot! He (with his girlfriend) arrived nearly two hours after their latest expected time, and with no communication, so we were apprehensive. They turned out to be fine though, just younger (late 20s) so probably not as hot on manners as our generation. I shall be cautious with the Guest review, thanks to all commenters for advice here.
- Potential guests of an “older persuasion” are probably being effectively excluded from ABB where they don’t use FB or other “validation” media. This excludes a decent chunk of the population who have the money to travel and stay places, and who may have similar manners and respect values to ourselves. (We’re not that stuffy, honestly. )
- We had a lady contact us about staying with her dog. As with imogenwail on another post, regarding children, we didn’t check the “Suitable for Dogs” box so were surprised when she asked to stay and was a bit shirty when turned down. (We’ve added a bit to our blurb to say we can’t accept dogs, but that’s daft when there is a selection for criteria such as this.) This and other ABB interface issues we will pursue further with ABB so as not to wander too far off-topic.
For guests I want to leave a negative comment I state in the review ’ X stayed with us for X nights, they were in town for X. For future host of X please contact me directly.’
This is a little bit of a tricky issue - on the one hand, it’s hard to bring yourself to write something that is anything but positive about someone you’ve shared this kind of experience with, but on the other, it’s important to help keep the trust currency of the Airbnb community as strong as it is. I think your feedback is more valuable than you may think for other hosts. What I would suggest doing is instead of writing about your sentiments for your mediocre guests (i.e. Adam was off-putting), write about the specific qualities that led to those sentiments (i.e. Adam seemed to enjoy keeping to himself for the most part), then let the other hosts decide for themselves whether that is or isn’t the ideal type of guest they’re looking for.
Has anyone come across this website: http://www.airbnbhell.com/airbnb-guest-stories/
Just a comment on this, KJ… Why bother with the “contact me directly?” For one thing, there’s not an internal messaging system, so the potential host would have to make up a fake inquiry in order to contact you. I only did this once with my guest from hell. (She had received one good review and I wanted to ask her if she’d been a problem at her place, where she had stayed right before my place)…
KJ, you really want to leave an honest review…just tell it like it is …leave it at the last minute so they cannot respond if you are concerned about it prompting a negative one in response. Just tell it like it is.
I noticed almost all of these were foreign problems. Look, I have traveled the world, and you gotta be on your toes. Never book anything you can’t verify to be what it says it is. Most of these people have themselves to blame. They just booked, and never did proper research. Also, Air BnB MUST kick these jerky hosts off the site! Air BnB might even want to inspect listings before letting them go up on Air BnB. Would this hurt corporate profits? YES. My thought: “Too Bad”. Do your work, clean up these crooks, or lose Air BnB long term, as ripped off people get more angry.
No host should list without many photos of the building and the rooms. No person should book anyplace without photo documentation of all the listing.
I despise the Air review system, even though I haven’t had a spanking in a while from a guest. I just always worry that they will leave me one, however. Even backhanded compliments are worse than nothing at all.
You and me both! I hate the present review system, even though I have all good reviews and 4.5 stars. I worry about that one nut job I can’t screen out and they show up here in my house and then screw me with a bad review, just because they are nuts!
I am also getting fed up with the growing numbers foreign guests who have no experience of America or it’s accepted culture. Some of you hosts know what I mean too!
what I do with guests that are mediocre is that i wait for the last day of the review period (the 14th day) and leave them the review so I know that most of them will not take or have time to reply back as in almost all cases the link for them to leave me a review will expire. Most of the time though, those are guests that are not verified and am pretty certain they will just create a new account or ask someone else to book…been hosting for 2 years over 500+ guests and my experience is that airbnb is largely on the side of the guests rather than the host
Same here im not a psycoanalazing nobody,
V-- you can also fine tune it so that you can find out the expiration time as well and time it to happen to the minute. We’ve determined that it is midnight in the guest’s time zone on the last day of the review period. Because I’m in Hawaii, I’m in the next to the last time zone on earth, so this will be easy for me to do. For others, it may not be so easy. They could still leave you one in return if the period had not expired in their time zone. You can always call Air CSR and ask for your guest’s expiration time.
Not sure I agree that Air is largely on the side of the guest V. I’ve been an Air host for 5.5 years and in all my escalated cases they have definitely been on my side.
I’ve been leaving honest feedback for all our guests lately. I’m sure it comes as a shock, especially as they’ve all left us glowing 5 star reviews, but the point is this; it’s wonderful that they’ve had such a great time in our home behaving however they liked without thought for us and are so enthusiastically grateful that we put up with it with such good grace, but nonetheless, future hosts will at least have the benefit of knowing exactly what their behavior was. I will list any good points about the stay and their personalities/behavior, and any bad points about the same. Future hosts can decide if it would bother them to have guests treat them the same way. It can be as simple as
E was quiet and low key, spending most of his time out of the home, but friendly when engaged in conversation. His request to use the washer and dryer for a shirt, pair of jeans and socks he was wearing made us think he had not read our listing to see whether we offered use of laundry facilities (we don’t). E was persistent about his need to have his items laundered so we ended up washing them for him as we don’t allow access to that part of the home. He slipped off early in the morning leaving a relatively tidy room.
I didn’t mention he didn’t follow house rules such as removing shoes. I wrote him in the private section that I felt that rather than pressure us to use our laundry for three items of clothing (which was his intention, to do a whole load of washing and drying for three things), that when I told him that we don’t allow guests to use our laundry because it was through our studio that we don’t allow guests to access, he should have stopped pressuring me at that point and instead asked about laundromats. We have a cheap laundromat right around the corner. Instead he kept pushing claiming he needed his clothes because suddenly he was meeting his girlfriend (it turned out to be a total lie!), until I caved and said I would do the laundry for him. He said ‘oh! I don’t want to treat you like a maid as he happily handed his stinky clothes over.’. But he didn’t mean he would leave pushing for the clothes - he was still pushing to get down into the studio himself and do it. It got to the point I thought he wanted to scope the studio. Anyway, my husband said he’d do them with his own clothes (he actually did them with some rags lol!), and asking him when he needed his clothes for, he said ‘I just need them for Monday’ which was the day he was going back home. He came straight from home (he told me he left from DC), and returned to DC on Monday, it appears he used us as a free laundromat because he couldn’t be bothered doing it himself. He made up a story to me about suddenly needing to meet an old girlfriend here so I would feel manipulated into helping him get his one other pair of clothes clean (as if it’s my problem), and it ended up being a lie, along with other weird stuff he said - told me he was visiting a brother, and that his brother was 90 - this was pretty hard to fathom, impossible actually, but he kept this story up and told me all about his brother and made this whole pity thing about a stroke Etc, then he told my husband he was just visiting a friend. Totally weird. Left without a word of thanks, and no response when I said sorry we didn’t get to see him off and hope he was comfy, no review. If he stole anything (that’s what I honestly felt he was here for!), I haven’t found it yet, not that I have looked. Too busy. And that was our nicest guest that weekend.
This was for the another guest the same weekend. I think I went too far here. I am angry with myself for not toning it down, although it is all as we experienced it, I don’t believe this level of detail is helpful. It was actually in reaction to the review I had written earlier that a guest got super upset about and couldn’t understand what he’d done wrong due to a brief review. I over responded here and got far too detailed.
*Although we were ok with K arriving later than our night arrival time due to her staying back to complete work, we were surprised when she appeared to forget that we had only accepted the booking based on the understanding that the studio would be in use between 12-7pm, meaning music would be heard throughout the house. It was agreed it wouldn’t be a problem as she would be out at the …festival. We understand plans change, but when K acted shocked when M mentioned he was starting recording now and seemed to have forgotten the only reason we accepted the booking was if they were ok with the recording, it made things very uncomfortable for us, especially because the studio is our main source of income, and it was awkward dealing with a guest that now seemed put out by what was clearly discussed (and had a clear record of in the messages before booking acceptance). K set up an office space at our dining room table and proceeded to have loud, heated business discussions throughout the day which were disruptive for us and no doubt for the other guests staying, not even glancing up to say ‘hello’ when I came to clear the breakfast things from around her computer and cables. A simple ‘is it ok if I work from here?’ would have made some distance towards us feeling like she realized she hadn’t booked our whole home (although we are happy to share the areas with guests). On the last morning I received chilly looks from K. I am not sure if it is because I messaged her to remind her that she had been made aware of the recording that would be happening here before she booked (which she said she was ok with). She responded that it was ‘her bad memory’, and that she was enjoying the music anyway. Nonetheless, my husband had a harder time relaxing and working than usual, and we felt that K could have been more considerate and friendly to deal with.
The worst guest got this review. I wrote it before the others, and he had a conniption, contacting Airbnb to get the to harass me about it (they did email me to try to find out what had happened, but it’s not as if they’re going to help me!). The man was an unpleasant sort. Sent me a message afterwards saying 'have you ever used that bathroom? The shower curtain billows up and crowds you … (Something I could have easily fixed if they’d have mentioned it while there! I went and checked and found that the weights that should have been in the bottom of the curtain had come out in the wash. The curtain could have been replaced immediately, ‘that’ bathroom could have been appreciated for the lovely ensuite it is). He goes on to say I have another quibble, I would have preferred a conventional washcloth (we give our guests these beautiful handmade organic washcloths that are loved by pretty much all women as fantastic for makeup removal, but also make up washes OUT of them). They are soft, and lovely. No idea what would cause someone to feel it was inferior to a ‘conventional washcloth’. They are all made by hand, and I support talented craftspeople wherever I can. The note is finished with ‘I won’t share these issues publicly’. This is a guy that’s letting me know we weren’t quite up to scratch, but whataguy he is, he’s going to let me off the hook and not tell everyone about my failings as a host. It was an irritating message to get as they had been given a beautiful room with exceptional bedding, handpicked for the older generation who I know prefers a finer hand in fabric, so they had antique Italian linen sheets with figural cherub embroidery down a meter long highly detailed turn down. 1920’s at the latest, perfect condition, light down duvet in Egyptian cotton cover, pretty Irish linen pillowcases with cool smooth fabric, almost impossible to find these days. I hoped they might appreciate it. Just a simple, that was nice, lovely, I enjoyed …, is enough to make my day. A note telling me that I should have provided them normal hotel stuff, and that was enough of an ‘issue’ to almost make a light threat really got my goat, especially as they hadn’t said thanks on leaving, just discussed how much they loved the area (that’s nice, but I love to hear guests say thank you for their stay when hosting is such an effort). His review was:
Unfortunately Alan was not a good fit for a guest in our home. There may have been a disconnect with his idea of what a stay in an Airbnb might be, as we felt he expected we were a hotel (and us the staff) rather than a unique home stay experience.
Well, its not designed for that purpose but you can contact a previous host. I’ve only done this once when I due writing a long drawn out review was just going to be stressful
lol… foreign problems? Airbnb is also outside the US (if that’s what you meant?) … and because of that hosts encounter other types of issues (potentially)
I’ve been doing this lately as well if i’m honest, and the one time I didn’t (as they were fellow kiwis/ozzies), they marked us down! They were messy and I didn’t say anything. What I fool I was!
Yeah. I don’t enjoy it in the least, but some guests are just downright awful. It’s not difficult to use basic manners and recognize that your host is more than just a servant to you.
Interestingly I met up with a good friend of mine who owns the busiest Airbnb in our area (they use IB). I couldn’t believe the change in her. She is a well renowned artist, and I heard the treatment she has been receiving from guests is the same as we receive. Guests don’t recognize us as human beings that are successful artists in our own rights that use Airbnb to level out our income streams, but purely as hotel staff to wait on them. I felt very sorry to see the change in my friend, especially as I know she has been struggling with depression also since starting. Being one of the most wonderful, talented and kind people I know, it made me sad. She told me some of her stories of guests and they were all the kinds of experiences we have had too. They also own a large multi-room Airbnb home - a church actually, and again it seems that many guests treat them more like staff than hosts. I wonder if having more than a room or two makes guests think they are in a hotel? Either way, it is hard to remain happy when guests show no interest in who’s home they are being welcomed into, and treat the people who have worked hard to create the beautiful environment they are enjoying in a way I would never treat wait staff. It’s a shame.
I had not used Airbnb before (my London property is offered on another well-known site) and the family that just left today our newly-furnished apartment (1) broke the coffee table by putting excessively-heavy baggage on it: I told them we would not hold them responsible and I am paying to fix it; and (2) walked off with one of the 2 IKEA terry cloth bath towels we provide. Of course they would deny it, and the robe costs £25 or so compared to the £720 rent so I am inclined to do nothing about seeking compensation. But neither do I want to leave good feedback; and for fear of libel suit (this being England where even the truth can be libellous) I won’t leave bad feedback either. And since we ourselves have no feedback yet, I have to hope our guests will say something nice. (They are French, I speak French, there was no misunderstanding; just misappropriation.) Such is the risk and the anguish of being an Airbnb landlord rather than (as we do for our other properties) renting by the year or through an agency).
I am often faced with a dilemma for guests like the ones I have been having these days. One overstayed past check out by more than an hour. Another left a big black stain on my carpets. Today I discovered a blood stained hand towel but the same guest left us a bottle of wine. I don’t want to make a big deal out of it since it was just a hand towel but it was still pretty gross.
they stole your bathrobe?