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Guests with too high expectations

pricing
hosting
cleaning

#1

After 4 months I decided not to continue hosting after the last guests. The main reason that I get less than the lowest long-term rent even with cleaning and managing by myself. The main problem- not a central location of the flat.
Anyway, the last booking played on my nerves. I did a complete cleaning of the flat for 4-5 hours before guests came. Guests were really friendly and kind. However, I’ve got lowest of the low in the review in a very polite form. The guest told me that the linen was cheap and dirty (new IKEA, average price), that it was impossible to cook in the kitchen (I have a normal kitchen with a small fridge), the was no dishwasher, she unsatisfied with a the quality of my washing machine- it wasn’t listed that I even have it and I ask guests not to use it, but it’s ok washing machine). Finally, she wrote that it was no place to put towels in the bathroom- I have a radiator for towels, but I have no hooks). Also, she complained that I didn’t provide sleepers, extra towels and there was no TV.
She started her review with “Unexperienced host” and mentioned smells and dirt- the flat was deep cleaned 4 hours before her arrival. I don’t know where she found any.
Also, the price was very very low for a new flat (in Moscow there are still many flats with “babooshkas” design, mine is different).
She bought plastic hooks and stuck them on super glue, it damaged walls when I tried to remove them. And she through away around 10 metal hangers from a design shop- they looked like deformed wire. I’m just in tears. The problem that many new guests think that they help business this way, but we all know what happens after so bad reviews :confused:
I think it’s better not to take older Eastern European customers using Airbnb for a first time. I think many of them have expectations that it would be RITZ no matter how low the price is.


#2

so sorry to hear this. It almost sounds like the guest was trying to get revenge for whatever reason. Throwing away hangers, and complaining of all these petty things - saying new linen was dirty and cheap…


#3

Hello @Mila
If your score is low you can try closing down your account and opening a new one :slight_smile:

I had troubles with older people as well…! Always have something to complain about!


#4

They posted information that I’m a scum everywhere- I believe it some mental illness… Can’t decide should I go to court or just leave it


#5

Ranking is still ok. But, I really can’t do it anymore


#6

@Mila what do you mean everywhere? Thats terrible I hope you figure it out. But if you’re earning money from airbnb dont let those guests take that privilege from you!


#7

There are about 5 local chats and forums. I spend all the evening asking admin to take information down.


#8

That’s not good advice @Gem20 - Airbnb know your email, phone and payment method and can ban her if @Mila does as you advise as it is against their terms to do what you suggest.

@Mila I am so sorry you had such a terrible guest nothing to do with her age and everything to do with her being plain awful.


#9

I agree, I shouldn’t mention it


#10

Most guests are simply wonderful, but when you get one of those that just torpedoes you…I understand. It is hurtful, and petty, and totally unnecessary. Please don’t let this discourage you. After two years, I have a take it or leave it attitude with my guests. I disclose Everything in the listing, and if they don’t like it, the heck with them. I am nice when they are nice, but if they are picky I am sharp with them. They normally back down. I have maintained super host and vast percentage of glowing reviews.
Maybe just take a short break, and re-approach. Best wishes to you!


#11

You’re right here. As I read forums I understand that this behaviour is not rare. The problem that I didn’t expect them to mark me with 1 star, so I can’t do anything here. I get near 50% of the possible long-term, so it’s the main reason to get out from Airbnb now.
I understand that it would be always a discouraging experience, this is life


#12

We had a group of people leave us a two star review once because they didn’t like staying in a shared house. Their complaints included things like supposedly having to sit on the floor in their rooms and feeling like they couldn’t be downstairs if we were down there and feeling as though they couldn’t cook in the kitchen because it was shared. One of the ladies got some kind of allergic reaction to something and went to the hospital because of it and chose to blame it on our carpets. We didn’t expect it at all because they were very nice to our faces but we almost lost our superhost status because of it. You just have to brush stuff like that off and realize you can’t please everyone.


#13

The review system is so unfair. It’s terrible that awful guests like this can put the nails in the coffin of your business. I do hear you, though. I understand how you feel about wanting to quit.

It’s everywhere, Mila. I’m in Hawaii and I get slammed by bad guests who didn’t read the listing and expected the 4 Seasons.


#14

This has happened to me before, as well, so I started sending a little email the morning after check-in to the effect of:

"Good Morning. I just wanted to touch base and make sure that you were able to rest well and are finding everything to your liking.

Your most pleasant experience and 5 star review mean the world to me. If anything doesn’t meet your expectation, I ask you the courtesy of informing me as soon as possible so that I have a chance to address the situation. It can be so disheartening to only learn of something amiss in a negative review when I could have easily made it right.

I look forward to making your stay all that you hoped it would be.

with my warmest regards …"

With that said, I would respond to her negative review by stating very calmly and factually that:

  • the listing did not offer laundry at all and that she overstepped by even using your facilities (this is like complaining about the quality of something that you stole!)
  • the kitchen was clearly shown in the photos (I assume), so unsure why she is did not expect this set-up
  • you never promised a dishwasher, so why would she expect this?
  • you never promised a TV, so why would she expect this?
  • that you personally cleaned it for X hours prior to her arrival and cannot imagine where she found any dirt – unless she brought it in with her.
  • that it is customary to hang towels on the bathroom radiator, rather than damage your home’s walls by gluing hooks on them
  • that many things can be resolved through simple communication, had she just asked for extra towels …
  • that you will be billing her for the cost of repairs to your walls, as well as for the designer hangers that she threw away
  • Finally, perhaps she is the “Unexperienced guest,” who does not bother to thoroughly read the listing to ensure it meets your expectations before booking … something to ponder.

#15

I get your intention but I think this is a bit OTT. A guest coming to stay does not need to see words like disheartening in the welcome note. It casts a pall over their stay just as it gets started. I would avoid.


#16

It also implies that the host has had bad reviews.


#17

I think it was @konacoconutz that helped me out with this a while back. I’ve posted our house rules on the refrigerator (whole-house rental) in a cheerful font and color. The part asking them to tell us about things right away says: Tell us about problems during your stay so we can work to fix them – after is too late!"


#18

Oh yeah! I called it tips for a tropical home, to keep it cheery and light.


#19

I shamelessly stole from you, @konacoconutz!

I called ours “Important Stuff to Know” and have 10 points - some safety (“Don’t plug 110V appliances into 220V outlets”), some “House Rules” (“No smoking or mosquito coils indoors”), some informative (“It’s the tropics - there will be bugs”) - the WiFi network and password, and phone numbers for our staff and me.


#20

SueEllen! Thank you a lot! I will steal it from you when I’ll return to business!


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