Guests looking for loger stay but wants to look at unit first

Inquiry goes like this:
“Hi! I am looking for something for the month of November. My dates are flexible. Is your unit available and if so how much is it for a month. Is there any way I can come and take a look”

This has happened to me several times, someone looking to stay 30 days or more and wants to see the place before booking. I understand this but this is also inconvenient for me and it also makes me a bit uneasy, essentially invited a stranger to my apartment, its a studio and I live alone. Its only ever worked out one time and the other time, I blocked out the month for potential guest and she never came around to look at the place. Any advice?

We politely say no. The last person that asked we suggested he stay a night first. He did and realized it was a bit far to commute to the base each day but would not have know had he not done it. We were sad to see him go but happier to not have to refund the rest of a stay he would have been unhappy with.


That’s a great idea! I seriously cant believe I didn’t think of that. Thank you so much.

You are right to be uneasy. There are other threads here about this but most of the advice is not to do long term (28 days or more) rentals through Airbnb to avoid squatters. Airbnb provides no protection for the host if they stop paying and don’t leave. As for seeing the listing before booking, just NO! Airbnb does not allow exchange of information before a booking. Someone with the request you received should be going through a traditional rental process by using a realtor or agency.


I get this A LOT.

There isn’t the concern of having squatters here in my province (of stays longer than 28 days) because of landlord laws (I’ve checked, spoken to the cops about it as well, to make sure), however, 99% of the time when I spent time showing the place, listening to the person’s life story, they don’t book. Period. The only person who did was the WORST GUEST I’D EVER HAD.

I now just say “I’m so sorry, Airbnb doesn’t allow us to disclose our contact information/address until after someone has booked”.


Signals an inexperienced user and is a red flag. Say no.
I sometimes get this when people are here on holiday and want to look over places for their relatives or for the next time they come. I usually just answer with sorry, it’s not allowed by the platform, and even if it were, there’s guests in the room right now. Something like that.

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Just. Say. No…

Interesting thread here - I did not realize it was against Airbnb policy to do this.

I have only gotten one request like this in 2 years. The guest was an international student doing a summer internship in my city. He spent his first 2 months in a filthy apartment he booked online before he arrived in the country. He wanted to stay at my place for the last month of his internship, but he was a little wary of the photos because of his previous experience booking online.

I ended up meeting him at a local cafe, where we chatted a bit about what he was looking for in an apartment and other small talk. After I had determined that I felt comfortable with this person, we walked back to my place and I showed him our space. He was very happy with it, and ended up booking the next day.

I will add that while I was initially a little wary, I ended up accepting the request because I wanted someone in our house while we were away on vacation for a week. I normally don’t host when we’re out of town, but since this guest would have spent 2 weeks with us while we were home before we left town, I felt comfortable having him continue his stay while we were on vacation. It ended up being a really positive experience - I made a little more than I would have otherwise (because I rented the room rather than closing down the listing during our vacation), and I felt good about helping this person escape an uncomfortable living situation.

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I’ve had different experiences from others on this thread. I’ve accommodated snowbird rental requests to view the unit prior to booking 5X and got 5 rentals. The two most recent asked to see the rental for 2018 consideration at the end of their 2017 rental. All have been from Canada or New York which means a 14 to 18 hour drive so a short stay isn’t an option.

For rentals over 30 days, I suggest the inquiry view additional information for the condo listed on the real estate rental site Zillow (rhymes with Willow starts with Z to get it past Airbnb censors) On Zillow my contact information is provided. For rentals over 30 days, we do a traditional lease agreement which is more easily enforced than the Airbnb contract.

Ok referring them to another website breaks Airbnb rules–just don’t tell on me. 80% of my rentals do go through Airbnb. The 30 day or more rentals are the exception.

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