Lights and guests

This topic is more for hosts who share their house with guests…but also might be relevant to others

We recently had a guest who turned on and left on all the lights in our house. I grew up in a energy conscious house, as did most of my friends come to think of it, so I found this behaviour a but odd (and annoying). We live in a very safe area - you could probably leave your doors unlocked. We found we were trailing after them turning the lights off.

What are everyone’s thoughts? Is it a generations thing? they were older >50yrs and I’m in my 20s. I don’t want to make it a rule as every other guest we’ve had turns the lights off as they go.

I don’t want to open another can of worms, but after five plus years of hosting, I’ve recently had two sets of older guests in a row give me a ton of trouble. One was that witch who scolded me about everything in private feedback (I posted here about it last week) and the other was an older guest who panicked needlessly and canceled last night, the day of their check in. I’ve always had good luck with over 50, and now they worry me! Kirsty you would think that that age range would be more conscious, so there just is no rhyme or reason to any of it. I’ve had great younger guests, terrible younger guests, great older guests and now several terrible older guests. Just no way to tell.


This is a possibility. You may not remember this since you are in your twenties but when I was kid growing up in the 80s we were always told it costs more money to switch lights on and off constantly, instead of just leaving them on if you are going to be in and out of the room.

When I was 18 I lived with roommates and my one roommate would constantly go behind me turning off lights as I would leave the room for a few minutes, and I thought it was strange since I was taught the complete opposite. This was in 1993. So I have heard the electricity rules have changed and it saves money to turn the lights off. But I wonder if it is still ingrained in some people (it kind of is with me).

Oh but if you are talking about when the leave the house and they are leaving lights on - then I have no explanation for that. I was only referring to being in the house and maybe leaving the kitchen for 30 minutes or so but leaving the lights on knowing I would return to the kitchen several times.

I just had some >50 yrs newbies that complained about the temperature – luckily in private feedback – the actual review was basic but positive. They were barely there except to sleep since they were visiting family locally for the Thanksgiving holiday.

We live in the house in a locked off apartment downstairs… the thermostat is upstairs with them. The house manual lets them know it’s perfectly fine to turn up the heat, just don’t reprogram the thermostat (please and thank you)!

It’s unfortunate that people don’t read the house manual or take the initiative to turn up the heat or just ask if they’re unsure. There was really no need to suffer. We have a supplemental electric heater downstairs, so we were perfectly toasty… I suggested that they don’t hesitate to ask us or any other airbnb host in the future… that’s what we’re there for!

I did end up having to clean up some melted chocolate off a woven rug in the entry way… thank goodness it was chocolate and NOT what I initially thought it was! And they left behind a bunch of personal items that I had to ship to them. But, I’m very thankful they only complained in private feedback and didn’t ding me on stars!

i just had a guest who checked in when we were not there and put AC on 70F.
I enetered the house and felt immediately ice cold marble floor as i like walking barefeet. I keep it ussualy on 75/76F. I an few minutes i wanted to put sweater on, and we are in South Florida. I think that day was 75F outside. He came out of his room and asked me if its ok that he put AC on 70F. I said, actually not really, bcs i am freezing right now, and my feet are cold. He pointed out to his shoes and said, well, i dont feel it and laughed.

I said, well, you are going to freeze everyone in this house, i have another guest downstairs. I said, how about we compromize and leave it at 73F. Ok, he said, lets try. Lets just leave it at 73F , not lower, i said without a smile.

We went out, and came back after midnight … to the freezing house. He put AC on 69F,and it was 73F outside. Here i got mad. I open all the windows and turned off AC completely. It was a chilly morning for South Florida that day, he didnt say anything when he left, cant wait for that review describing the heat exaustion in my house that he suffered.

Talking about saving energy

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I did not know there are thermostats with minimum.
It puzzles me how do you come to someone’s house and just without asking change temperature in a house, when host are occupying the house also.
And what was wrong with the guy anyway, if it was a woman his age I would think she is in menopause and going through hot flashes but he was a guy not even overweight.

The Nest is a good option, since it is programmable for both heat and ac, but is also able to sense occupancy,and it will go up or down to your limits when nobody is sensed. Also, you have a locked max and min so even if a guiest goes over and cranks it up,or down, it only goes within your parameters.

It amazes me how people act when they are paying a few dollars to someone who opens their home to them; this is why one of the first rules of a host should be to assume that guests will never treat your house like theirs.

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Does nest work with baseboards, or only central heating and air?

We have a three-storey semi with central AC/heating. The guest rooms are on the third floor. The thermostat is on the main floor in a private area that the guests would only rarely see. But it’s impossible to set the temperature so that it’s good on both the 1st floor and the 3rd floor, so we recently installed a ductless mini-split heat-pump/AC system to give each room on the 3rd floor individual control. Cost about $6500 - top of the line Mitsubishi (we didn’t do this just for the guests - we’ve known we needed it for years, but having the guests there made it more urgent to get done.)

Unfortunately, the damn thing doesn’t work right. When you set a temperature (easily done on the remote) it overshoots by 5-6 degrees at least. It’s hard to tell because the remote only shows the target temperature, not the actual temperature. I have separate thermometers, but I’m not sure how accurate they are. Very frustrating.

The biggest piss-off is that the “auto” setting does not work in a mini-split setup. Auto mode lets you pick a temperature, and then the head (the internal part in each room) decides whether it needs to go into either heating or cooling mode. It should be perfectly simple for any guest to operate. A mini-split system has multiple heads driven by one exterior unit, but for Auto mode to work, each head needs its own external unit, which would be crazy expensive and look ridiculous. Basically the sales guy lied to me, but all of the competing vendors told the same lie. I think they don’t actually understand what they’re selling.

Anyway, I have to get involved in setting the temperature, and it’s a pain because both heads have to be in the same mode, either heating or cooling. And when you switch over, one of them always stalls out, and you need an expert user (me) to get them both working.

We have days here in Toronto where you want the heating on in the morning and the AC on in the afternoon. That was why the Auto mode seemed so appealing.

Certain other features are terrific, though. The heads work quickly and are dead quiet. I think they’re extremely energy efficient also. And they should be fine for the main purpose, which was to get the AC right in the hottest summer days. Winter heat has never really been a problem.

Nest is a direct replacement for your older thermostat, so it works with all systems.

These units are REALLY popular in New Zealand where central heating like here in the UK is virtually non-existent. Everyone calls them heat pumps (then tho they cool as well) and they arent used at all in summer. In Australia its the opposite in most places ha!

My parents have the exact same model and have never used the automatic function.

That is a myth. It grew out of the very real phenomenon that repeatedly turning them on and off would reduce a bulb’s lifetime. That was long ago though and it didn’t even apply to incandescent after like the 60’s.


wow kona. sounds like airbnb is countering the island magic for you a little bit lately :frowning:


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“My parents have never used the automatic function.”

Do they have a mini-split system or a separate external unit for each internal head?

It gets too cold here to use the heat pump throughout the winter. It only works down to about 15-20 degrees below zero, so it’s most useful in the shoulder seasons. The units here are sold as AC units, with the heat-pump function an optional extra.

These are terrible guests in my book, and I hope you left the honest truth about them in a review or feedback! Choclate on the rug? Items you had to mail? That’s bad!!!

Were they an older hippie looking from Alberta? :smile: Sounds just like the old foggie jackasses who just stayed with me. She complained about windchimes not even in her area of her rental, then left a nasty scathing message in private feedback…claiming a bunch of untrue things… AND stole supplies from me! I was flabbergasted! Her scathing words still echo in my head and make me doubt myself. She was cruel and seemed to relish abusing me in the private feedback, calling my place tired and filthy. UGH… I hate guests sometimes!!!

LOL! It’s true, I think some of these guests are aging me. I swear I used to think my kids were aging me at times. I sometimes look at old photos of myself when I was in the throes of kid-rearing and I look tired and spent. :slight_smile: You know? Like if you compare a photo of the president upon taking office to one upon leaving office? Much more grey hair. (Let’s hope we don’t have to watch Trump’s orange hair turn grey as president!) Yikes. :slight_smile:

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Remember that line about Reagan? He didn’t dye his hair, but had just gone prematurely orange. :wink:

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Trump’s make up is also Orange. What a buffoon. This is pathetic, but at the same time, the world is watching, and perceives that a majority of Republicans support this clown. This is why, by default, Hillary will be our next president without even having to campaign one more day.

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eek sorry I have no idea