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HELP. Nightmare review from nightmare guest!



This is my first time being a host on Airbnb. I went on a vacation last week and unfortunately I set my Airbnb price a bit low to stimulate demand, got some guy who spoke bad English and wanted to book my place for months at a time - and the guy wasn’t even the person staying in the room he was booking for someone else (reseller?) - and he wanted to pay in cash not through Airbnb!! Some red flags but I thought it’s better to be trusting…

The condo is brand new (just built a couple months ago) and I cleaned the place out before guest arrival -> and I took a video of the whole place the day I left it (just in case anything broke). The video shows the place is 5/5 clean! Because I was out of the country and my brother (who is really busy) had to handle check-in, there was lots of back and forth between me, guest / reseller, and brother about when to check in and the time got moved around a few times. That sucks for the guest and that I can understand.

I get back from vacation and the place is in dissaray. Things scattered everywhere. Guest’s nasty old bathrobe still on the floor, another old shirt and old towel of his laid about. Dried feces stains in the toilet bowl :frowning: receipts and other papers in the kitchen sink :frowning: . It was so weird that I took a pic of it. Luckily nothing was broken.

So I don’t want a bad review so I gave the guest a 4/5 overall and a 3/5 for cleanliness. Guest turns around and gives me a 1/5 overall including a 1/5 for cleanliness!!! All that shows up on my page from his review is the words “was good” his star ratings don’t show, thank God. But he is my first guest so will his ratings show up after I have another 3 guests and Airbnb will give me an average of my ratings? I sent the guest / booking guy a messaging asking him to talk to me about his review but have gotten no response yet.

I have a video showing that the place is 5/5 clean the day of his arrival. Airbnb what can I do if I a guest is just hateful and childish and gives a nightmare review???


Yes, those ratings will show. did he pay outside of airbnb? If so I am not sure how he left a review. The best you can do is contact airbnb and offer to show the video. Hopefully it is time coded somehow so it will show that it was directly before the guest stayed. The state of the apartment although grotty sounding is not entirely alarming - at least no damage was done! Remember many guests assume your home is essentially a hotel, and you are essentially a maid. Get used to it!

Welcome to airbnb. Some guests are simply a disaster. You have to be very careful in your screening of booking requests. Airbnb makes it very difficult for hosts to do this however, because you only get 24 hours to accept or deny a booking request. If you deny a request your listing will go down in the search ratings. So airbnb is almost forcing us to accept requests quickly, with barely enough time to have any dialog with the guest to ascertain if they are going to be suitable guests. When you consider the requests that come in late at night, different time zones, and guests unable to reply while at work, 24 hours leaves barely enough time in most instances to find out much about the guests asking to book your airbnb, and this is where many if not most problems stem.

If you find out after accepting the booking after communicating further that you are unhappy with the guest, canceling carries stiff penalties - and airbnb gets to keep the fees! Win win for them, and a big lose for hosts. Airbnb is trying to make sure guests can book wherever they like especially as soon as they authorize their funds when making a request, and it is based on the premise that all guests are great guests, except any host that has been operating for any length of time (or even just once!) knows this is flawed logic. Personally if I haven’t had the time to find out enough about my potential guests, I deny the request. I prefer to be further back in the listings than risk my home, mental health and safety.


The guest wanted to pay cash but I refused so he paid through Airbnb.

The video should be timestamped, and in addition while I was taking the video of the place I read out an article that was in the news that day to ensure that people know its that day.

Thanks for your comments and I think Airbnb should change their policy on reviews. In special cases they should reserve the right to remove reviews that are made by bad guests. When I left a positive review for the guy, who is a verified member with a few positive review already, I wanted to tell the Airbnb community that this guy was a mess, but didn’t want to invite retaliation and didn’t want to have negativity associate with my account :frowning:


Herein lies the very issue with the review system and why it doesn’t work. As hosts, we don’t want our prospective guests to think we are nasty picky hard to please hosts, so we gloss over things that should be mentioned, and leave good reviews for terrible guests (or don’t review at all). This is likely why the guest that booked had good reviews despite his terrible practices.

In future, never accept a booking for anyone other than the guest that is actually going to stay. People try to play it down, but there are many terrible guests on airbnb. When you host, you open yourself and your home to the possibility of all kinds of abuse and potential damage. You will hear it again and again.


The guest is not necessarily childish and hateful, perhaps his cleanliness standards are different from yours. Cleaning up some papers in the sink instead of the trash and throwing a bathrobe in the garbage is NOT a herculean task. Flush the toilet, if there is still feces in the toilet, perhaps the toilet doesn’t flush properly.I fyou have someone else do the check in for you and he does a poor job, its not the guests fault. Reviews are simply peoples opinions about their stay in your place, they are not death threats.


DRJELLIS I think the guest is childish. A 1/5 in cleanliness for a 6 month old brand spanking new condo that I spent hours cleaning and arranging before guest arrival?? Does this guy usually stay at the Burj Khalifa?

And I had to scrape the dried feces off the toilet bowl by hand (using gloves and scrubber). Toilet flushes fine but looks like he had a diarrhea spout and just let some spillover sit and dry for a few days. Just flushing a toilet wasn’t the case.


The guest would not have been able to see your review until you wrote yours, so the review could not have been based on what you wrote.


Oops…what I meant was, neither host nor guest are able to see each others’ review until both have written one. If you wrote your review before your guest, he/she would not have been able to view it.


I would ask this guest in the private messaging what he thought was not clean. Please don’t take any offense to my queston…but is there any possibility your brother allowed one of his friends to stay before your guest arrived? I only ask because I have heard of housekeepers and property managers taking advantage sometimes. Just wanted to make sure you ruled out all possibilities for the inexplicable review


You said he wanted to stay for months, how long did he stay? Maybe he expected cleaning at certain intervals during his stay.

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