How to actually get reimbursed for damages in your house - frustrated!


I am just joining this forum. I’ve been a host through AirBnB for 2 years. I am wondering how anyone ever gets security deposits reimbursed? The two times I’ve had issues with guests - one being resolved just today - the Resolution process through AirBnB has been nothing less than gut wrenching.

For example - I had a group of 9 in over NYE, and came home to a broken lamp shade and a decorative wall anchor that was broken. Evidence found a game of “strikeball” and with all the furniture pushed back, my guess is with a lot of drinking on NYE, things got out of hand and hence things got broken.

I have rules stating no parties, I have a $300 security deposit. I contacted this guest less than a day after Checkout on Monday with estimates, asking for $105 for replacement of both of the items. No response from the guest, at all - and this guest had been very responsive previously. Friday, after the 3 day wait I escalated it to the AirBnB Resolution Center. Saturday night, the guest replied, apologized, and agreed to pay that amount and asked how. In further correspondence this morning he said he couldn’t find any emails from AirBnB and asked me to resend. There is no way to do this once it’s in their Resolution Center. So this afternoon, I get an email from the Resolution Center saying they are reimbursing my $25 due to fair market value and they don’t cover wall art and they already discussed this with Steve.

So…I’m stuck. Again.

What are other hosts’ strategies for protecting their furnishings? A guest clearly broke something, admitted it, and yet I am paying money out of my pocket to replace it. Outside of removing every decorative item in this house, what are my options? What good is taking a security deposit if there is no way you can actually protect your items and use it when needed?

Obviously I will be reassessing allowing my house to be rented on holidays like NYE, but does anyone have any advice to actually make this work for me? Is there anything you can put in rules that makes it easier to claim part of your security deposit if AirBnB Resolution has to get involved?

South Carolina

Sorry to hear this happened. I would never let a property to groups over NYE - of course they are going to party.

It’s ridiculous if the guests have agreed that Airbnb suggest another amount, but I believe the arbitration is binding.

Do you not have home insurance for STRs (as Airbnb hosts to have)? - this would enable you to claim for the many areas not covered by the so called Airbnb Host Guarantee.

I believe other listing companies allow hosts to set and manage their deposit so you might want to look into using them too/instead.