I have been an Airbnb full-time host for 5 years. During that time I have had thousands of guests, I have a good rating and I have hardly ever - maybe once a year - had to use the resolution centre.
Recently my husband blocked out a week from the calendar so he could work on the house round the clock, repainting, doing lots of diy to improve the house, getting carpets cleaned and refreshing and renovating the property. We were excited that the next guests would love it.
The next guest was Daniel in a group of 7 people. I felt a bit worried as they were all men and I worried they might be going to throw a party but I had to hope for the best.
The next morning I got two messages from the neighbours complaining bitterly (- they have never had to complain before) that a wild party had been going on at the house ALL night and they had had no sleep - lots of people going in and out and alot of noise through the walls and in the garden.
I sent Daniel a message. He didn’t respond. I tried to phone him but his number was fake - it didn’t exist. I phoned Airbnb several times through the day to ask advice and asking them to try to get in contact with Daniel. No one could.
I phoned my housekeeper and cleaner and they went to the house and knocked on the door. No reply. Peered in the windows and saw a totally trashed house. The furniture was turned over, beer bottles everywhere, things thrown about. They phoned me and I asked them to try to enter. They went in and started working on the house to try to clean it up and rectify it as I had new guests booked for the very next day. There were stains on the carpets, broken glass, food thrown around, blood on the mattress and sheets, stains on the carpet. I told them to take photos and send me invoices for any extra cleaning required.
Later that day I managed to find Daniel on Facebook. I sent him a message saying that he had broken my house rules and could not stay another night but he could come and collect his stuff any time.
He phoned me eventually and was obviously inebriated. He phoned me every couple of hours for the next 2 days, apologising and just rambling about things. I told him to stop phoning and use the Airbnb message thread.
I kept Airbnb in close communication. Took their advice, opened a resolution centre claim and gave the invoices, receipts for repair and stain-removal and all the photographs of the mess and the damage.
An Airbnb representative called Susannah dealt with the case from prior to the resolution centre case even being opened. She phoned me, was rude and aggressive on the phone, wouldn’t let me finish a sentence and was clearly very in favour of my ‘poor guest’. She told me I had ‘been a great host up until now’ and ‘I had lessons to learn from this’ and I ‘should have waited and consulted Airbnb before asking my guests to leave’.
Yet I had waited 12 hours, communicating with Airbnb several times, taking their advice. My neighbours even threatened me with the police if I did not make the guests leave. I could not let Daniel stay and continue to party - I had new guests arriving the next day, the house had to be repaired and he had broken 3 of my house rules and several Airbnb rules.
- No Parties
- Don’t Disturb the Neighbours
- Leave the House as You Found it
- Don’t bring extra Guests you haven’t paid for without informing me - He had 50 guests in my house!!!
The Airbnb representative decided the case was invalid as a ‘photo had been taken from the internet’. I checked all the numerous photos my staff sent me and all were DEFINITELY of my house and NOT taken from the internet.
So I sent her a complaint that her reason was erroneous as all photos are genuine. She then sent me a catty reply saying she is giving Daniel £280 from my next payout - the WHOLE cost of his stay refunded, though he only lost one night.
So basically I have spent a lot of money repairing and cleaning my house. My staff, neighbours and I have all been massively inconvenienced and spent time and stress dealing with the situation and yet the partying, housewrecking guest is rewarded with a free stay.
I’m so upset. I have to pay £280 to my harassing, house-wrecking, alcholic guest and get not a penny from my security deposit.
What can I do?