Safety concerns about current airbnb

So I’m currently in LA to attend the Airbnb festival. LA was pretty expensive and I’ve ended up in a hostel style place. There are a total of 33 beds in the place, it’s DTLA (fashion district) and for me is uncomfortably close to skid row. (Didn’t even know what that was until I got here, wow what a shock to my European sensibilities!).

There are two major concerns I have about this place. One the tumble drier is set up to vent into the windowless and ventless bathroom next to it. Hot air blows constantly into the room, drastically raising the temperature. Fans are used throughout the open plan space in part I guess to counteract the heat generation but that means the fans are on 24/7. Since this place is full, each and every socket is also loaded with items people are trying to charge. More heat being generated.

I feel there’s a serious fire risk here and am already having nightmares where I wake on fire. Am I being paranoid? Aren’t there laws against some of this stuff ?

What type of occupancy permit does this place have? That might be hard to determine, especially if they are not transparent, but that determines which building codes they must follow. With this many beds, they should have a sprinkler system in place. That is easy to determine. Look at the ceilings. Do they have little spigots in a regular pattern? The drier venting inside is absolutely against code; but it might have been allowed when they built out the space. Re-inspections are generally triggered by improvements by permit, and some things get grandfathered in [i.e. upgrades to building codes is not required.] You can ask to see the latest fire department inspection report. I doubt that you will have much luck with this. People clearly book the place; happy to pay a fraction of the going LA rages, even if the place is not as nice and/or safe. I suspect that the owners know this and feel that they have the leverage. Did you book through AirBNB or directly? If direct, the website might have some additional information, but again, safety isn’t generally a selling point for a hostel-type accommodation.


It’s in a warehouse which I don’t think is zoned for living in … its kinda the type of space you’d store boxes of stuff in.

No sprinklers anywhere in the space either.

Have to disagree about safety. I want someone cheap to stay and I want relevant safety adhered to. There are 30 something beds in this place; this guy is making more than enough money to make sure people don’t die in their sleep.

Thinking about calling air as it’s freaking me out enough to move on.


@Zandra Safety is actually essential to me… but some folks don’t think about it. Obviously, you do. Hope you enjoy openLA…

Is this an airbnb listing you are staying in? Sorry you got stuck with that. I once stayed in an airbnb that was filthy and some host said it was because I get what I pay for.

But like you, I disagree. The basics are safety and cleanliness - which should be offered at any price.

Yes, yes, yes, if this is an airbnb space, report it. I’d be tempted to report it to someone with the city as well.

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This is an Airbnb listing. I booked when the listing was new (three reviews) months and months ago. Since then the amount of reviews have gone up and consistently the thing people bring up is that it’s a hostel. The listing description would lead you to believe otherwise; there is a picture of the bottom bunk but done in a way that it looks like a cheap bed. Nowhere in the listing does it mention bunks or 30 fellow inhabitants.

I am sure that AirBNB would “re-home” you. The question is at what price? Really feel for you…

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This is exactly why Air is seen as fueling the growth of accommodations that are unregulated and dangerous. This is appalling and you ought to report this to Air.


Or file a complaint with the city:


No it doesn’t help right now true but I had been wondering how I could file a complaint so yes this is useful.

I’m going to call air I guess.

You get what you pay for :slight_smile:


Appalling… This is the type of Air place that should be run out of “business.” Call Air now, get a refund, call the city to report them,…and you know? I am kinda with Dudley on this one. Get out of dodge. There are so many nice places to see in The LA area. I think you can learn more about doing Air by reading this board than by going to the Air Open.

Maybe some LA hosts here would be open to having you. ??

Hey I have openings in my place. Go to LAX and come over to Hawaii. It’s only about five hours. :smiley:

The place or the Open…Is is NOT the best of LA… I feel for you…


Would you mind shAring the listing so we can peruse it?
If not, what is the nightly rate?

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Oh for sure! I know that area where she is quite well. Downtown L.A. can be loads of fun because there’s lots to see. Although we’re having another heat wave and it’s hot as hell today, so the situation she’s describing sounds ghastly.

Unfortunately, I am solidly booked but there are other nice and cheap options here in Long Beach, which is a 45 minute metro ride away.


If I were you I would move out immediately. That area of town is not safe after dark. I warned our recent guests who wanted to explore downtown to stay away from Skid Row after dark. I believe that you are European so you may not know that virtually anyone in the U.S. can get a gun which makes unsafe areas much more unsafe. I also believe that you are correct in your assessment of fire danger. If I were you I would report the hosts to Airbnb and to Building and Safety. @smtucker is correct that when a lodging reaches a certain number of lodgers you are required to have a fire sprinkler system. Also, I believe that commercial buildings don’t have as much wiggle room on safety requirements such as dryer venting as private homes do. Here is a link to Los Angeles Building and Safety website.


EllenN I forgot about guns. I am seriously dumb for getting this one so wrong … but I really didn’t appreciate that anywhere in a developed country could be quite so bad. Yesterday I got lost and ended up in the middle of skid row but during the day. It freaked me out so much that I haven’t walked anywhere since and am just using uber.

This is a disaster waiting to happen. It’s only a matter of time before a fire sweeps through this kind of place. Thirty guests and no sprinkler? Where do you use the bathroom? Does it even come with a bathroom?

It has two bathrooms but they’re not vented. That’s how I started to think hmmmm this place isn’t being used for what it’s been designed for and I’m a bit worried …

Crikey… He does say it is a shared room but doesn’t mention how many people in the room… He leaves a lot out!

. Also, look at the reviews… 4,5 stars, just like I have, LOL.

He lives there too? The kitchen looks okay. It looks like it could be a converted warehouse. Why the heck are so many people raving about it!! Unreal. Wonders never cease.

Quite a few photos missing, eh? Like how many beds are in the room where you are staying. I would take some photos of the bad stuff, call air and get out of there.

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