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Guests can now leave responses to reviews!

After I got a miserable review from my smoker guests, I checked their reviews, only to see that guests can now leave public responses to reviews! Is this new? Did I miss it?

As a host I’m pretty sure that even if the guest responded to a negative review, I still would not rent to them.

I think they have always been able to do that.

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Really? Okay. I’m behind on the times. LOL

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What did they say in their review?

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My review:

XXX and his group were one of the worst groups we have hosted. They arrived more than an hour late without notifying us, after asking for early check in. He not only violated multiple House Rules, the most irritating being no smoking inside our house. His group did not check out on time and did not advise us of this. We arrived to them still lounging around our flat an hour after check out time. His response to all of these infractions was that he did not know or they were an accident.

His public response on His profile:

  1. We violated one house rule by lighting up a cigarette on the patio after which a neighbour walked by and notified the guest that that was not allowed inside the compound. This was my mistake as I did not inform our guest that smoking is not allowed outdoors within the complex. We did not smoke inside the house. 2) We were not ‘lounging’ about in the apartment after check-out. My father and I had gone out to rent a car and come back to pick up my mother and sister and the luggage. However the rentals had some issues causing us to be delayed by some time. We returned to the apartment only to be threatened to be charged for another nights’ stay by the host.

Once you have the resolution do the reviews get removed? In any case I wouldn’t host these people unless I allowed smoking in my rental. And why would anyone do that?

The one thing this guest fails to understand is that for everyone that “forgets” or is late by “circumstance”, there is a host response for all the upcoming guests. You could say absolutely no smoking in or around the suite, and no unregistered guests ever, and late check-outs regardless of reason result in $50 as an overtime or extra cleaning staff fee.

I think his response only makes himself look bad, full of excuses.

Also, wasn’t it his dad who did the smoking? He was dumb to call him “a guest.” That makes it sound like they invited other people into the apartment besides the group booked, which may not sit well with other prospective hosts.

We have a very clear house rule NO SMOKING ANYWHERE ON THE PROPERTY that is repeated 3 times on the listing and then 2 more times in the welcome email. As well as check out is at 12pm and if you want to stay longer than 12pm then there is a fee.

Going forward, you may want to put up “No Smoking” signs in Mandarin, if you are going to be hosting a lot people from that part of the word. I imagine there are many who travel to the Bay Area.

I know that Singapore and China are different countries, but many people living in Singpore came from Mainland China originally. Lots of cultural similarities, too.

Even the Chinese government has a hard time preventing people from smoking indoors. It’s common to see people lighting up right under a non-smoking sign.

I was on a high speed train from Shanghai to Beijing. You wouldn’t believe how many times an announcement came over intercom to remind passengers about the no-smoking rule, which is pretty new. At least 20. There was also a train Marshall who went up and down the train to make sure people complied. Yet people were still breaking the rules!

It’s a country and culture of chain-smokers who are not used to having to wait to smoke.

The signs should also mention the fines and deposit. Money talks.

We actually do not get a lot of Chinese guests. We get a fair amount of inquires, but they most always ask for a substantial discount, and when I tell them no they disappear. This group of guests was Indian/Pakistani.

I agree signs would be a good idea, but I’m against my house looking more like a rental! LOL

I feel the same way about signs. This discussion has led me to add another House Rule stating late check-outs result in a $50 cleaning fee. This makes sense to me since now guests are required to agree to House Rules before they reserve and serves as a reminder that we are not hotels with a plethora of staff.

@Lynn_Marlow
How do you collect the $50 late check out fee?

I would request it from Airbnb from my Damage Deposit fee stated as $250. Not sure how they would respond, or whether I would actually do it but see it primarily as a good deterrent for that type of behaviour.

You can’t. That must be used for damages only, and even then you have to prove your case and have them side with you. Read the fine print. You can’t use the deposit for that. Air really takes control away from hosts, and this is one example.

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Well if it works as a deterrent, go ahead. I don’t understand late check outs. If I was firm about this then at check out time I would knock on the door and say it’s check out time. If they made excuses I’d stand firm. I’d put their stuff out on the curb and go in and start cleaning and as soon as they stepped out the door I’d close it behind them.

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Thanks for your feedback. Keep in mind it might be more difficult for a woman to “move” out late guests, especially if she is working alone.

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Guests are used to getting an automatic grace period from hotels.

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Hey @KKC

Ooh. Tough. I like it, though I can’t see myself doing that. Are you large and intimidating? Or do you have a pack of intimidating and well-trained canines on your heels?

No, I’m a retired school teacher and used to getting my way in non-violent, non-intimidating ways. It’s just big talk though I’ve not had anyone overstay to the point that I had to go tell them it was time to go. I do think I could go to the room though with my mop and vacuum and cheerfully say “Check out time was 11, I’m going to set your stuff out on the porch here so I don’t get it wet and get started on cleaning for my next guest.”

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