Hello Fellow Forum Members!!
I am kind of new to the forum.
I do read (lurk) a lot of the posts to get good advice on hosting. I have been in AirBnb since 2013, so I’m not a newbie to hosting nor to the various types of guests out there.
This week we welcomed a third party guest for 11 days, parents of the person booking.
On check-in everything seemed to be fine. They arrived super late and I just managed to check them in before falling into bed.
Then I get a call from Airbnb the next morning telling me the guests want to leave. I asked why, and this is when it starts to get strange and ultimately annoying.
I host a one bedroom apt space in my house on the garden level, almost basement but not, as there is a basement as well, the listing is here: airbnb.com/rooms/1846100
It is an old brick row house brownstone in Brooklyn. Pre 1900’s old but still trying to charm us and the world.
The rental space I s not fancy, but in the NYC market it’s a very good bargain. It is big, has loads of amenities, and is private. Now this is what AB told me the guest are complaining about
• The guests do not feel comfortable in the space - I really don’t know what to do about that. I did ask.
• The floors creak - we have wooden floors.
• The mattress is hard and they can’t sleep - the mattress is a memory foam on a full/queen sized platform/slatted bedframe. Again there is nothing I could remedy about any of these things.
• They also complained that it was dark. It’s a row house so light is limited but we do have electricity.
We have been having thunderstorms here and it is very gray outside, no sunlight, and we are expecting the rains from Hurricane Florence in a few days. So no one has been getting very many sunny days here in Brooklyn.
Now, I asked “what I could do to make them comfortable?”, the response from Airbnb is that they said there was nothing.
There is nothing I can do.
So, I am told they want to leave and want the remainder of their stay refunded. I have a strict refund policy. No refunds seven day prior, but 100% anytime before.
So I said sure, they can cancel the reservation and let me know when they will be checking out, so that I can do so, get the keys and wish them well.
Airbnb wants ME to cancel and offer a refund. I told them that since there is nothing wrong with the space nor the hosting, that it is the guests who need to cancel, and there will be no refund as per the policy the guests agreed to when they booked the space.
Then they asked me if I am sure? Why wouldn’t I be sure ten seconds after saying it? I feel very manipulated by Airbnb, but I stuck to my guns—no refund.
I told them that until the guests leave they will be treated as if they were guests which they still are. This was Friday morning. The guests were out all day and I returned home from work late, so I never saw them that day nor yesterday (Saturday) morning. They were out again on Saturday when I went downstairs to say hello and ask how they were doing.
Now this is where it gets good. The guests text and asked to see me just before I was about to go out. I see them and they try to manipulate me, to get me to refund the rest of the stay. I told them that they agreed to a cancellation policy which I am sticking to; as their reason for wanting to leave has nothing to do with my hosting, the booked rental, and apparently me, since I asked them personally “what can I do to make your stay more comfortable and would encourage you to stay?”.
The guest reply that there is nothing I can do.
So I breathe and reiterate that they need to speak to Airbnb as this no longer has anything to do with my job as their host.
The guest then replies that they stayed in an AirBnB before and it was really nice and my place isn’t.
I reply that since this is my home, and I do not know where they stayed before, there is no comparison, and the listing photos are true to what they see here and there is nothing I can do to make the place like the one they stayed in before.
I again told them to speak to Airbnb about their wanting to leave. As I cannot help them further. That they can continue to stay the length of their booking, but if not, then to let me know when they will check out so that I can say goodbye and thank them.
Do you think I am being harsh with them? I don’t think I am, but the Customer Service person made it seem like it’s my fault they are unhappy when he concedes that I have done nothing wrong.
I am really done with these guests at the moment, as I prepared extra hard since they were staying so long.
What say you forum. Asking for advice from here on in. Thanks!!!