"Issue reported" in a 3-star review

Hi all, I have been a super host since 2016 and have a few airbnbs now. I just got my first 3-star review. She wrote: “Kim is a great host. She gave easy to follow and clear instructions and was super responsive. The place was very clean. The furniture, especially the couches and beds, could use an update as they were not very comfortable. The price per night is a good deal but when you add the taxes and fees, it feels like you’re paying a bit too much for what you get.” BTW, what she paid was well within the going rate for a 3br/2bath Airbnb.

I publicly replied: “Ah, I’m sorry you didn’t find the place comfortable. Most people certainly do, including us who stay there often. The mattresses are all Sealy top brand and are only 2 years old.”

She gave me 5s for communication, cleanliness and check-in, 3s for value, location and accuracy. For accuracy I have a little flagged “issue reported” next to a comment: Beds and couches not particularly comfortable.”

I’m not asking how to handle guest anymore. It’s done. I have 100s of excellent reviews, so I’m not even that worried about what it means for my “standing”, but what the heck is “issue reported” and what might I expect next from Airbnb?


Some elements are SO subjective. I do find how a host responds to convey a lot to me as a guest reading through reviews. If the host is crazy defensive and lashes back, I’m less inclined to book, so your response would have made me write off the review as a “whiney guest” and not have deterred me from booking. I am not familiar with the “Issue reported” tag.


I suspect the “Issue reported” corresponds with the new review forms where any rating 3* or lower calls up options to check off as to why one gave that rating.

Pretty much all ratings are quite subjective, be they given by guests or hosts, which is why I don’t put much stock in them. You could have 100 reviews saying the place was spotless and straight up 5* cleanliness reviews, then have one of those guests who has nothing better to do than pull the fridge out from the wall and mark you down for cleanliness because there was a piece of a cookie under there or a dust bunny.

A friend had a guest mention “dust” in the review. As my friend is a meticulous cleaner, she searched high and low for this supposed dust, and finally found a less than 1cm triangle of dust in the bedhead bookshelf where she hadn’t gotten the cleaning cloth all the way into the back corner.


It seems like “issue reported” is a weird type of warning (?) from Abnb, honestly. I got it from a 3-star review for the house being “too small”… but all-in-all, nothing happened. My dashboard had an alert to fix my listing (sure, let me just magically make it more than the 500sqft advertised), but after a few days, the alert vanished and there didn’t seem to be any lasting repercussions. That being said, maybe it affects your ranking?

It feels strange what they consider an issue, however!


Well, “they” aren’t “considering” anything. It’s just a computer algorithm that spits out the message anytime a guest gives 3 stars or less and ticks off why. No actual human is looking at the complaint and judging whether it’s absurd or not.


Is that listing still showing up for you? This article seems to suggest that having something under “Listing Issues” means that the listing is suspended and must be reactivated “after the suspension period”. It’s typically Airbnb-vague but I came across this recently about the Listing Issues tab:

I hope you will keep us updated on this so that we can learn about the Issues tab. And I really hope your listing isn’t suspended over something so extremely subjective as the comfortability of a couch or bed. And if it isn’t then I’d like to know what it means that it’s listed under that section otherwise and when if ever it is taken off of the listing issues section.

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I got a 3 star review from a guest who bled all over my bed linen. I gave her a 3 star review as well, and also spoke to CS to see if I could get her review removed. They would not remove her review, and I still (2 months later) see this 3* review under “Listing Issues”, but I don’t know what to do about it. It doesn’t explicitly say the listing is suspended. Luckily I had a 3-month booking immediately after her booking (via Homestay not airbnb) so if they had suspended me for a couple of months I would not have been affected, but I’m still curious as to what hosts are expected to do to “remedy” a hostile review from a guest who anticipated that the host was going to give them a bad review.

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Did she anticipate a bad review because of the blood on the linens? Did you call her out on that? I think a woman having a bleeding accident on the sheets is a normal thing and not something that a guest should get chastized or get a bad review for. Blood washes out.
Or was she a bad guest in other ways?


just to catch up… the issue seems to have gone away, or at least I don’t see note of it anymore and Air hasn’t followed up. Nothing is suspended, so…I dunno, seems to be a nothing burger

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Curious how long it took for it to go away? I have that going on right now and also not getting any new bookings so have been wondering if I’m being “punished.”

well, guys, I lied. It has not gone away. I noticed it buried in Listing Issues on the "insights’ page. It said it “needs attention”. I have no idea what that means, so I sent a message to the super host support and we’ll see. I outlined what happened, mentioned this listing has 59 positive reviews and this is an outlier. And asked what I was supposed to do. I’ll keep you posted!

BTW, the listing seems to still be active with no kind of public-facing flag…

Ugh sorry to hear it. I got such an unwarranted 3 star rating. Guest said I didn’t disclose the bathroom was shared - it’s in the 3rd sentence of the listing and mentioned multiple times. Said we should have provided bread, oranges and apples - I don’t mention providing food for guests anywhere. Said I intentionally slowed down the internet after 11 - not sure how or why I would do this. Gave us 3 stars and then said she looked forward to coming back soon!! Hoooo boy! Anyways now I have the same thing as you where it says “needs attention.” My overall rating is still great and I haven’t gone to customer service with it as I was hoping the next reviews would just push it down the line. But now I haven’t gotten any new booking since, and I’m starting to get nervous that I have fallen off the algorithm or something. Please do let me know if you hear anything back from CS. All the best!

ok, so I reached out to Airbnb support via messaging, as I mentioned. I actually got a phone call w/I 24 hours. They understood the issue, assured me that as long as no other complaints about beds happened, it would be considered an outlier and not affect my status or ability to get bookings. I have since gotten bookings AND got my superhost status renewed, so I think it’s all good. I think it was good that I made a complaint so that I could amplify the outlierness of this outlier. So, I think that’s it.

This is a new feature. I think it appeared with the winter release. I can’t quite remember what mine was, but it was something ridiculous, and even though it said “needs action” or something there was no button to press to write and explanation or dismiss the issue. It went away a few weeks later. I’m guessing it’s a half arsed feature they didn’t think through probably, but it’s main point is to scare us.

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That’s still crazy. Years of hosting and a single complaint about the hardness of the bed (which is extremely subjective) puts you into probation?

So anything a guest checks off that was “wrong” for which they gave a lower rating, now prompts an “issue reported” and “needs attention” (or action, whatever), it seems?

I should be used to it by now, but the endless ways that Airbnb shamelessly comes up with to presume hosts guilty of something, based solely on one guest checking off some box, never ceases to dismay me.

I could understand if 3 guests in a month complained about a bed, or if the host had a bunch of 3 star reviews, but one guest, once? For a host with high ratings? It’s blatantly insulting.

They could bring it to hosts’ attention in a respectful way, not a disrespectful way
Like, “Your guest mentioned an issue when rating. Please review the reported issue and address it if necessary.”
Something that acknowleges that just because a guest reports something doesn’t mean it’s true or anything that can or needs to be remedied.

Airbnb knows perfectly well that guests make bogus claims and leave retaliatory reviews. Yet they keep pretending as if all guests are truthful and who it would never occur to to lie or exaggerate anything.

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And that right there is the problem with these new AL generated responses. I agree that there are certain things a Guest will rate a “3” that is beyond a Host’s control, ie. some hosts cannot replace the bed or furniture, they cannot move their home so guest can have a water view.

I have personally addressed some of these rating categories with CS; their response is to respond to any concerns in the Feedback to Airbnb. We need to do more often so that Airbnb can document our frustration over these issues. I’ve heard that sometimes these “issue reported” alerts affect how the listing appears in searches–the more things a listing has to “address or fix,” the more the listing is pushed down in the rankings :cry:

Where have you heard this?

@rolf I have heard this from speaking with other Hosts who have had issues reported by Guests and have these alerts from Airbnb. Several have claimed that they have seen their rankings pushed down to further pages or can’t even find their listing at all. This has not happened to me personally, although I did recently receive “3” in several categories in a review for a disgruntled Guest (this was just last week for the first time for me) so I will have to monitor to see if my ranking is affected.

So, anecdotal, not evidential.