Low rating for guest?

I’m not quite sure how the reviewing process works when it comes to rating a guest low. I have a guest who I may have to review poorly; I’m not 100% sure until they check out in an hour. I hope not! But if I do, I want to understand the process. I am a new host; they are my 4th guest. I have three 5-star review so far and the first three guests were wonderful experiences.

When would you suggest I review them if I have to rate them low? I’ve read so many things about when/what to do when rating a guest low, that I’m totally confused as to what is true and what is not.

Your review of them will post after they post theirs or in two weeks, whichever comes first. It is often advised to wait the two weeks if it’s going to be a bad review. The reasons given vary including not wanting to prod a review from a guest that might be inclined to skip reviewing at all. But if you submit a review first the guest will get an email that says “you got a review, see what it says by leaving your own review.” Then they get curious so they review you. If you get notified that they have reviewed you, yours will post as soon as you submit it. Still some people like to wait so that other subsequent stays review will hopefully post and the bad review won’t be on top. There are variables of course. If you tend to have fewer guests or longer stays a bad review might be on the first page for weeks or months. If, like me, you host several people a week a bad review could be buried quickly.

I like to review right away so hopefully other hosts they might be staying with on the same trip can be warned. I’ve never gotten a truly bad review so I may have become too confident in that regard.

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Thank you. That all makes sense. So if I have to post a bad review, it is best to wait until the last hour of the 14th day so they do not have time to retaliate? I don’t like conflict but if they are smoking in my non-smoking suite which has never been smoked in before, I won’t hesitate to let other hosts know in a polite and professional manner. Have you ever been anxious to walk into a guest area after they have checked out?

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Anxious every time there is a check out. Because you never ever know what is goi g to greet you!


I only wait if I expect their review to be less than stellar - like if they had a sour attitude about something (or life in general), if I needed to address an issue directly with them (people hate being told they’re not perfect!) or if I failed in some aspect of hosting.

If I have no reason to fear their review I’ll review within a day or so of check-out, like I do with any other guest.

This forum can be helpful for feedback on reviews and what to leave in private vs. public feedback, so let us know if you’d like to run anything by us!


True dat. I always worry when I open the fridge but I just found some super delicious home made brownies which I am currently eating. Nom nom nom.


It wasn’t so bad in the guest area. Messier than most guests so far, but not what I thought it could be. They moved the bed and night stand which is not an easy process. I did smell Frebreeze when I walked in, so it is possible they smoked in there. Body odor for sure. The strangest guests so far. Slept all day, up all night but stayed in their room. Unless they came out at night when we were sleeping. I did wake up a few times during one night and the motion detector lights in our shared backyard kept going on/off. When they checked out they were carrying large white trash bags filled with something. Several trips to the car and back. They did not bring them in with them. I did not review them, nor they me. They were non communicative the whole time they were here and the guest area is attached to our house. I felt really uneasy the whole time they were here, and even though everything turned out fine besides some extra cleaning, I cannot whole heartedly recommend them to other hosts. We have an older couple here now. The difference in how I feel now is night and day. I’m pretty good at intuitively feeling intent and that didn’t feel good.

Why not? Reviews are the lynchpin of the system. This annoys me no end.

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You still should review them, wait until day 14 if you are worried about a bad review in return.


I had a guest that I really wanted to rate poorly due to the mess they left. However, I did not. I didn’t rate them at all. I guess I told myself if I have nothing good to say, don’t say anything at all. I was afraid that the guest would get angry and write me an awful review out of spite. Sometimes we have to pick our battles. They didn’t damage anything but were very messy.

That’s not how reviews work, they are double blind meaning the guest can’t see your review until they’ve already written and posted theirs. And once that happens they can’t be edited. This is to prevent the kind of retaliation you speak of.

The only way to make Airbnb work for all of us is to review honestly. Most of us have wondered how we got a terrible guest that only had good reviews. It’s because hosts like yourself that don’t really understand how Airbnb works leave no reviews or none at all. Please stop.

I did not know that the reviews are double blind. Thank you for the clarification.

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Welcome to the forum. I see you’ve posted on several threads. If you continue to read here I think you will find the posts to be very useful in learning about Airbnb, how it works, how to avoid problems and how to best deal with them when they inevitably happen anyway.

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Yes, I’m new. I just became a host and I’m reading a lot of the comments to see what to expect from guests and better prepare myself for what can happen. This forum is a valuable tool. Thank you.

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Most people here know that I have a HUGE bee in my bonnet about hosts reviewing guests honestly. Airbnb will only work if they do and hosts have a responsibility to other hosts.

Imagine that you had a really bad guest who had all brilliant reviews. You’d be SO mad at those hosts for not being honest! So don’t beat about the bush. Remember that reviews are for other hosts and not to feed the egos of the guests. I don’t want them back so I don’t mind annoying them with my review.

I know that there’s a fondness here for suggesting that hosts should wait until the 14 day almost-deadline before writing a review. I don’t agree for two reasons.

The first one is that it’s such a performance - once a guest has gone then I don’t want to be even thinking about them - let alone writing about them - in two weeks. Too stressful. Forget them, they’re gone.

The other reason is that I want to get my review out there quick. If the guests are on a road trip or otherwise some sort of tour, I want to warn future hosts about them now. Quickly.

The great thing about this forum is that we all have different viewpoints! :slight_smile:


I currently have 4 men staying working in the area who only booked yesterday. As I am on IB they were able to book and only had one review which recommended them but when I looked they had 3s for communication, cleanliness and following the rules. This is what she said:

"R is a sociable chap interest in computers well versed in his trade of specialised welding, welcome back any time very interesting chap guest. "

If you only read that you’d think they were 5 star guests but 3 3s would normally be red flags. But I met one who wasn’t working today who turned up early who seemed very nice. I wouldn’t normally bother but I reiterated that smoking inside was not permitted as I could smell smoke on his breath and it is pretty wintery outside. He said he understood and was fine with that. Similarly that noise after 11pm was not okay and his dog had to be stopped from barking if it started. Again no problems. I was trying to cover any rules they might have previously broken which the reviewer didn’t mention so wish she had. She explicitly said she would recommend them for other hosts so I am hoping it was nothing too bad.

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Are you sure they are plain brownies? I once had a guest leave some “special” brownies but fortunately they messaged me from the airport — I think that they had planned to eat them before going through airport security.


There isn’t retaliation, persay, because they can’t see your bad review until it’s ‘too late’ for them. They either have already process their review, or their 2 week window has passed and they can no longer review you. They also cannot respond to a review, while you, on the other hand, can.

You don’t need to wait to review them, only if you want to.

This is NOT true! This is also why I tend to want super detailed reviews especially when they are bad. The first bad review I left for a guest who brought multiple unregistered and unpaid for guests into my HOME…even after I told him not to do it again after the first time with me there! the guest replied that I was unreasonable and that the guests he brought into the house were his son and daughter in law and were only there for x minutes and that I had been ok with it and that there was no reason for others to not be allowed to come in to see the place they were staying, etc. only part of it was true (it was his son and daughter in law).

I’m not really sure what you’re talking about, but on AirBNB you can “publicly” respond to a guest’s review for your own listing. Any potential guest who reads your reviews would also see your responses. But when you review them, they cannot publicly respond.