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FREEDOM - Any suggestions

Im done. I have had enough. Im out. Cancelled all future bookings (back to back) and apologised profusely. Been hit with a 50 GBP cancellation for each guest. LOL. Paid a small refund to the last guest just to get rid of them.

I have a fabulous co host who does all the interaction, cleaning etc (and she always gets high scores) - and I said to her why is this so hard. She manages about 10 nearby Airbnbs, and she said she cannot believe the bad luck I get with guests. She has no
I am her unluckiest client apparently.

This time we had a guest for 19 nights. Saw a mouse - on it straight away. Killed mouse, then another. Could find no mouse droppings skirting boards etc, and lets face it when you turn over an Airbnb twice in a week for months, it is the cleanest home in the kingdom (especially to C19 standards). I offer a small discount 25% because she wants to stay. Bring in the pest control guy who contradicts what she has said: almost no droppings. She said she is going to Airbnb with complaint and demands 50% refund for the whole 19 days. I tell her to move out and I will refund the remainder. She refuses to move out but demands the refund and says she will leave a bad review. And then we have hours and hours and hours of Airbnb / and her / and distress / and untruths (on her part).

So she does leave but doesnt tell anybody. And guess what, now she wants the full refund from when she says she did leave - LOL. Hahahahahah unlikely.

After sacrificing her two pet mice Tik and Tok, she thinks she is entitled to 50% I suppose.

We get 55555then1then5555555then1then555555555.

Im done. I just cannot stand these entitled, abusive, greedy people anymore. Constantly scamming if possible. Leaving irrational abusive, threatening bad reviews that are so far from the previous 10 reviews but Airbnb refuses to do anything. Usually about something over which we have no control. Like “traffic”, bad restaurant experience, etc.
Then emails from Air saying if you get another 3* we will delist you. I say her brother has an Air down the road. Nothing.

Then Airbnb getting on line and telling me what to do assuming I am stupid. Some ten year old in who knows where.

So thanks for the ride guys. I have from almost the start (just after I started house full of brand new painting, furniture, etc was trashed - and full of smoke - which is a nice bookend with the mouse plague).

I may try VRBO. There is another for Sabbatical Homes. WIMDU.

I dont ‘survive’ on the money, but obviously an asset has to provide an income.

Any ideas, would be gratefully received.

I have devoured this website since I joined, and received so much and so many great ideas, and laughs. So thank you everybody. All the best.

10 Likes

That’s so sad.

I’m sure you’ve had every suggestion. But, just in case, I would limit guest stays significantly. Maybe 2 to 4 nights. With at least one empty day between guests. Something like that.

But I can certainly understand why you’d be burned to a crisp with Airbnb.

Best wishes with your next venture.

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That’s such a sad post! It must be awful indeed to find yourself and your listing backed in a corner with no fight left, all of your hopes and efforts shattered at once into a thousand little pieces, irreparable and seemingly all for naught. The post reads almost like an obituary.

With that metaphor in mind, are you up for a post-mortem? A CSI-inspired death investigation? I ask because your post suggests to me that you want to continue to list the property as a STR (just not Airbnb) and that surprised me.

When I initially read your post I figured you were probably going to resign yourself to becoming a landlord with traditional 12-month leases, or perhaps you were going to sell the property… With all due respect, are you not concerned that perhaps history may repeat itself with other platforms and OTAs?

I’m puzzled about some details though. What role did your experienced co-host play in all this, the co-host “who does all the interaction” and has the “high scores”? How has she participated in other situations where guests have had problems? Is the co-host really doing “all the interaction”, that is, damage control?

Your last sentence in the second paragraph seems to be missing a word or words. Perhaps clarify? Regarding your co-host, you wrote that “[you are] her unluckiest client apparently”. Is that your assumption or did your co-host say that? And the inclusion of the word ‘apparently’ would irritate me if stated so casually by the co-host. A co-host managing ten properties must have valuable insight to your situation. I can’t imagine that co-host just shrugging off your situation to you being “unlucky”. What a platitude! Yeah, just “think positive”, right? I mean hello what responsibility does a co-host have in this terrible state of affairs? I would imagine A LOT. Also, what is the significance of mouse droppings, skirting boards, the 5555 11111 thingies and serial threats of bad reviews and aren’t the high scores tied to you, not the co-host, and how can co-host have “high scores” but Airbnb threatens to delist if another 3*, etc?

What did Airbnb tell you to do that assumed you were stupid?

In conclusion, I believe your co-host should be held more accountable for your listing at all times, whether good or bad. I am a co-host that handles all interaction and cleaning on two properties, not ten, and I bust my ass and hustle every day! It seems as though the co-host has a free pass while you’re being hung out to dry.

(Sorry if I come off as insensitive, but your co-host has some explaining to do in my opinion.)

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25% isn’t a “small discount”. Nor is giving a discount because the guest “wants to stay” the sort of attitude that will lead to guests not thinking that they have the upper hand from square one.
Personally I consider 19 days too long a booking to take, unless it’s a repeat guest you like.

You haven’t really said anything about why you think you’ve seemingly gotten a large number of bad guests. While any host can get a bad guest slip through the cracks, if it happens a lot, there are always factors that are causing this, you just have to figure out what they are and how to change them.

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and when i said that guests are liars, cheats and can’t be trusted in another thread, forum members attacked me saying that’s ‘absurd’ loooool

In my experience, to combat trashy guests, you’ve got to stoop to their level

When they lie to airbnb e.g. to extort me in exchange for good review, try score a free trip etc, i’m prepared to tell an even bigger lie to airbnb to even the playing field

Works like a charm lool

4 Likes

Plenty of options here:

JF

1 Like

Ugh. No. If you’re getting bad guests you are doing something wrong.

Raising rates actually gets better guests, and paying attention to detail also does. In the case of the OP, unless she has hosted all by herself, I doubt if she really has any idea what her supposed co-host is doing.

She needs to pay a visit (if it was me it would be a surprise visit) during a turnover to see what the F is going on. She needs to know what cleaners are doing, and check her pricing to make sure it’s not too low.

I never allow longer than 7 days during high season. If I were her, I would try that, or maybe even shorter stays, but never less than 2 days to filter out partiers.

All this is why I would never remote host or have a cohost running my place unless it was an emergency.

3 Likes

I remote host because of C_19 - I live in Australia. My Co-H says I dont charge enough. Then I dont get filled if I raise the price. She only greets, organises cleaning, replacement soaps, etc etc and answers problems if any. She runs around ten in her area. Minimum stay is 3 nights. As I think I said, complaints are about (i) road noise (ii) bed is not a double (purchased as a double) but we also have a queen. Rave review then give us a 3*. Several people herein have mentioned the co-host but we always get top marks for communication, clean, anything to do with co-host. And what can I do other than sack her - then what. Who am I gonna call? How about room not as big as photos (provided by Airbnb photographer) and then they steal all the linen? I think that some guests are just psycho…envious. Think that the host must be rich, even though it is modest UK flat in a great location. I have hosted in my home country but gave it up due to guests. Expect 5* hotel. No, Im done. Thanks to the guys (generic) for the other providers. Will try those.

1 Like

And I’ll say the same thing as before:

One thing I’ve learned, and I’m sure I’m not alone here, is that the vast majority of guests are perfectly fine, and it is a very, very small percentage who cause issues. Hosts who consistently have issues with guests really need to look at themselves, their style of hosting and their listing; problems are not the norm.

That statement says a lot more about you, than all the problematic guests you appear to host.

Maybe the OP needs to take a step back and reassess the listing in respect of prices etc, speak to the co host and try to work out why she is being “unlucky”. Bad guests are out there, but they are a serious minority.

JF

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You did mention that there were almost no droppings. Therefore, implying that there are mice. You also mention that if you get another 3 that Airbnb will delist you.

I’m curious, are you a remote host? I’m assuming that you are since your cohost seems to be handling most matters.

If in fact there are mice and issues with your cohost, changing platforms will not help. You need to correct any issues. Take a little break and rethink your situation before making further decisions.

2 Likes

I like the suggestion to take a break. Maybe you used up y our quota of bad luck with guests. We missed our income during COVID but appreciated the quiet for a few months. Some hosts have had luck increasing their prices or altering minimum and maximum timeframes to get the guests that they really want. It takes some trial and error.

7 Likes

I agree, take a time out. Raise your rates and cap your nights and see what your net profit is with a higher vacancy rate. It may surprise you.
Not sure if Airbnb will let you reopen after the raft of cancellations from your shut down. There are other platforms as you have noted. Forum feedback could have helped with responses to negative reviews and tweet/facebook language to challenge Airbnb’s interpretation, but that’s water under the bridge.
Sounds like you had a run of whacko guests and you sincerely need a break. Did anyone actually see these dead mice or was it just photos? What guest kills mice themselves rather than alerting the host ASAP? If the bodies were there, the guest brought in mice actors and sacrificed them just to con you out of free nights? Wowser.

4 Likes

I wonder if the occasional guest is confused by the 5star vs 1star. Does their written review match the stars?

I had a wonderful guest leave a one star review. I called to apologize and find out what was wrong.

She loved my place. She thought a 1 was a great score like “we are number 1”

2 Likes

I’ve never had a guest who was a liar, cheat, or couldn’t be trusted. Your experience and the OP’s don’t seem to be what the majority of other hosts here experience.

So it would be more accurate for you to state “My guests are liars…”

And I just love how you rationalize being a liar yourself.

What’s the point of getting “filled” if guests steal your linens, lie to get refunds, and leave 1* reviews? Quality over quantity makes more sense than vice versa.

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This—agreed.

Personal experience: last summer I changed my listing from max 4 to max 2 guests and kept my price about the same as for 4 guests.

This summer I raised my prices 10%. I am fully booked and my guests this summer so far have been “best-est” group ever.

I’ve been fortunate to have some exceptionally good guests in the past. This year concurrent with the higher pricing, is the first time I’ve had this many exceptional guests in a row.

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I agree! I too changed my listing from 8 to 6 and kept it at the same price. In addition, I increased it from 3 days min to 5 days min. I’m making the same but I’m having less headaches.

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Squirrel question: are as many days booked at 5 vs 3 or do you have unplanned gaps between reservations?

I considered doing that too but was afraid I would end up with bookings Saturday to Thursday and Thursday night blocked (I like a night between rentals) and Friday night Un-bookable.

I’ve been lucky. I have had many reservations for 5, 7 and even two weeks. I do leave 2 days in between blocked so that I can take my time cleaning and laundering all the sheets and towels. Most of the guests seem to come in on Thurs and leave on Tues so it gives me Tues afternoon and all day Wed. to clean. Try it and see if it works for you. If not you can always change it.

1 Like

Not quite sure what ‘loooool’ means but never mind that…

Two points. When you say ‘guests’ you do realise that many of us here are guests as well as hosts so you’re calling us liars and cheats. Not a good way to be taken seriously at this forum.

The second thing is, and I’d genuinely love to know the answer, is why many long-time hosts have no real problems for years whilst other hosts seem to have nothing but these liars and cheats?

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@rmorell Richard, you have raised some interesting points, specifically as it relates to the co-host. If the co-host is the one in charge of communications, why hasn’t the co-host addressed the issues that have come up with the mice and the previous situations that made Sarah think she is the unluckiest host?

3 Likes
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