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Getting Airbnb to pay for a post party clean-up

It’s been a long time since I visit the site and I hope everyone’s hosting business is doing as well as possible, despite the circumstances.

I need advice:

After seeing my home go unrented for 1.5 years, I ignored my spidey senses and accepted a 2-night booking the day after the UK lockdown slightly eased. It is a luxury high-end 2,400sqft, 5-bed house in a high-end area.

At 9am after the first night, a neighbour called me to tell me a very loud party had taken place. According to them (my WiFi and therefor Ring camera was down), there was an MC and about 50 attendees.

When I got there, I found alcohol bottles/cups outside the house validating my neighbours claim. So I demanded Airbnb kick the guest out. Although the guest rejected my claim at first, I insisted and then camped in my car to see how many people would exit. As no one came out for several hours, I finally went in.

Although it was a 2-night booking, no one had slept there. They simply booked the place and turned the first 2 floors into a night club. The stench of alcohol all over the floors, walls and upholstery was revolting and I would eventually fill up 12 black rubbish bags with empty bottles of alcohol.

Airbnb told me their guarantee protected me and I sprung into action by doing what I’d previously learned from this forum: I submitted an ultra detailed, fully itemised dispute resolution backed by actual receipts showing £750 of damage and £2,100 to clean the walls, curtains, furniture and parquet floors of all the alcohol that had been sprayed and poured everywhere.

Airbnb did not give the guest a chance to dispute it (presumably because they had signed up using fraudulent identification and/or had closed their account).

After a week or 2, Airbnb told me a payment was on its way for the damages, but that the claim for extra cleaning had been passed on to another department.

After a couple of weeks of silence, I followed up. I then some calls from a service centre in the Philippines to tell me they were following up with that department and then near-daily emails telling me the same.

After a month, I demanded them to provide me with a resolution, at which point they asked me to re-explain what was going on. Shocked that they did not know, I demanded them to get their act together. The next message I received was a short sentence telling me that they would not pay anything towards the extra cleaning as it exceeded the $200 they allocate for cleaning.

Needless to say that I’m furious as this has put me out of pocket by £2,100 (as well as a £1,200 booking I lost because I could not clean the house in time.)

Can any hosts with experience in dealing with a situation like this advise me on what I can do to get reimbursed for that £2,100?

:pray::pray::pray:

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Did you post the reimbursement request on Airbnb help Twitter or Airbnb Facebook pages? Twitter only gives you 180 characters so condense your request and ask them to follow up with you ASAP

Sample (162 characters)
“ Need Assistance ASAP: 06/01/21 unauthorized party at my home. Airbnb notified immediately. Lxxxx in damage repair & cleaning. Lost next rental b/c repairs in process. “

I wish this had not happened to you. I can’t imagine how awful.

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Sorry to hear about this?

What area are you in?

Try and invest in a CCTV system to act alongside your doorbell cam… and if you can, hide your wifi router, so that it can’t be ‘accidentally switched off’

I’ll wait for Muddy, johnF, jaquo, Nordling etc to chime in… According to them guests aren’t liars, cheats and can be trusted.

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I like Annet’s suggestion, but I would be a little more intense on Facebook and Twitter, as the situation warrants it:

“Hosts beware! CS told me Airbnb won’t process cleaning claim over L200 no matter size or how filthy. Broke up illegal 50-person party at my house. Spills, stains, stink everywhere. 50 bags trash haul. Receipts for L1,200 cleaning, got L0, lost next rental b/c repairs in process.”

Nice to hear from you again, sorry about the circumstances.

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I obviously haven’t been vocal enough in saying how I agree with them. I feel left out not being included with this group of respected and knowledgeable hosts.

Another thing is that Fahed is well known to those of us who are regular members as he used to be quite active here. I, and many others, have also seen his listing, read his reviews and so on.

What you refuse to acknowledge is that you only come here to whine and cry. Although it can’t be true, you post as if ALL guests are liars and cheats. We aren’t saying NO guests are, we are simply calling you out on your BS.

@Fahed sorry this happened. It seems that Airbnb customer service has declined in the last few months. I agree with tweeting them and continuing to pursue them until they pay.

Also, raise your minimum stay to 3-5 nights. I don’t know about in the UK but bookings here are quite high from pent up demand. You might be surprised.

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Hello @Fahed

Sorry this happened to you awful when guests destroy your place .

(I agree after getting lots of advice here in your early days when you were starting out, we do now only seem to see you when you have a problem)

It’s such a shame you didn’t fix your wifi/CCtv when you knew you had guests coming.

Also if there’s a next time don’t wait around for hours at your listing allowing guests to do yet more damage to your place and cause further upset to your neighbours while you wait to see if guests leave. Go in their straight away and kick everyone out.

I’m terms of Airbnb you can go to arbitration (see guarantee T&C ) . Also to check did you not also make a claim on your own STR insurance for STRs .

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Hi guys,

Thank you for welcoming me back. Not having guests since the beginning of Lockdown 1 pretty much meant that I ceased to be a host. But like @KKC said, there seems to be pent-up demand, so hopefully I’m back in the game now.

@Annet3176 @dpfromva @KKC Thanks for your suggestions regarding social media. Just to be clear, are these private messages (to their inboxes), public messages (on their page for Facebook and @ for Twitter) or posts to my miniscule following with Airbnb tagged to get their attention.

There’s no place for a CCTV system on a townhouse like this, but thank you for the suggestion.

Yep. Already happening. Problem this time was something else and a new router had been ordered but not yet delivered.

Although it was already on 2 nights, this is one of the first things I did (pushing it up to 5 for the summer at least). Sadly, I don’t think it would have made a difference as these guys booked a 2 night stay, but then left after their party without even sleeping there.

Absolutely. Also, before there’s a next time, I’ll also listen to my spidey senses without letting desperation get the better of me.

Will do. Any advice on what to say/do to win a more favourable outcome?

Not yet.

Meanwhile, as of 10 mins ago, I received an email from Airbnb notifying me they can pay me £520. Although it’s an improvement, its still not enough, so thank you for your advice everyone. I shall implement it all with hope of achieving the full amount.

:pray::pray::pray:

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Airbnbhelp yes

I guess with arbitration you would need to read their T&Cs and demonstrate how they have failed to honour them in terms of your claim.

Why wouldn’t you make a claim on your own specialist insurance at the time of the party -you’ve probably invalidated your claim by not doing so.

It didn’t cross my mind as Airbnb was so supportive at the time of the party and absolutely assured me I was protected by their guarantee. I’ve never had to make a claim on home insurance before.

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Also, making a claim on your own insurance will likely spike your rates or get you dropped… so I understand why you’d prefer to first try AirBnB

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Public Facebook and Twitter. You want Airbnb to know that other hosts are reading about your awful experience.
I posted on Facebook about a double booking glitch once (a long time ago) and got a request for further information immediately from them.

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Why would you get dropped for making a insurance claim in your experience - surely that’s the whole point of taking out a specialist home insurance for STRs @HudsonNY

As I recall your place is in the higher price range. Maybe they have a $2000 party budget but not a $5000 one.

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:laughing: Fair enough.

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@Fahed Hope you get a reasonable resolution.

You didn’t mention whether the neighbor who called you was really mad, or was just alerting you. It’s always a good idea to make friends with the neighbors and ask them to call you the moment they see or hear anything suspicious going on, regardless of whether it happens to be 3 AM.

Better to be able to boot out bad guests before they are able to do much damage.

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Unfortunately that’s how insurance often works in the US- Most folks save claims for the big stuff (and you have a deductible anyways) to mitigate the risk of getting dropped/not renewed or having premiums sky rocket.

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Fahed hosts in London, UK.

JF

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I’m sure they were mad, especially considering they said that the sound system was shockingly amazing and the MC particularly loud. But they were only alerting me as we have always had an excellent and helpful neighbourly relationship. They didn’t report it until much later as they thought it was me having the party!

Sadly, they moved out a few weeks ago! I now need to establish equally-good relations with the new neighbours. So thank you for the reminder.

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Ah! Hopefully it’s better than here then when it comes to dealing with insurance claims

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