Security Cameras in Back Yard

Recently curtains around our back yard pergola were stolen either during an Airbnb stay or shortly thereafter. I haven’t been videotaping outside (I will now) but even so I won’t ‘know’ that the Airbnb guest is responsible. [BTW these curtains were almost $500, as they are thick and heavy and block out the sun. Whether you think THAT purchase was a mistake there are other valuables in the back yard as well as the potential to create mischief with the pool or enter the house in a less obtrusive way.]

The easiest way to access our yard is through a locked (combination) gate, at which there is no security camera. We will very soon install a camera there as we’ve known that’s also a way that guests could hide the number of people on the property.

But someone could scale the back yard fence and get in that way, whether to steal or just enter the property. We hadn’t put security cameras to monitor that as we thought it an imposition on the guests’ privacy, though Airbnb rules permit it so long as presence disclosed, including active recording.

But the question is whether we ‘should’ do it?

I could see a guest taking an understanding approach, an approving approach ( as conceptually it provides some safety measure for them especially if there is a sign for outsiders indicating presence) or a kind of creepy feeling that they are being watched. For background the yard is not a place where you might walk around naked because neighbors could see that, but still I could see where a guest might just might not like the presence of cameras there, even though disclosed in the listing.

What do you think? Would it be a mistake to put cameras that show the activity in the back yard, which is exclusively an area for the guests?

Yes, I think it would be a mistake. Most guests would see it as quite intrusive of their privacy.


Yes, a mistake. I’m sure that I’m not the only guest who would think 'don’t these people trust me? I’ve given them some of my hard-earned money so that I can stay here and this is how I’m treated?"

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Yes, but…

I suggest installing perimeter cameras around the property that only show fences, gates, driveways, and the perimeter of the property, and make sure you point out that this is for their security. Your router and camera hub need to be locked and secured, and should have a battery backup in case of power failure.

Also put in house rules that covering or disabling cameras will result in instant termination of their stay with no refund.


Thank you for your suggestions.

Yes, we will have a UPS connected to the cameras.

I thought about the perimeter cameras (we have these so far as they. don’t peer into our back yard or a neighbor’s back yard) but if I covered the entire perimeter I would see my neighbor’s yard. They might object to that, or – if I asked – say ‘ok’ but later come to resent it. Most security cameras are wide angle. I suppose if I could get a very narrow frame it might work, but they wouldn’t know whether I’m being truthful OR they could have guests that might feel uncomfortable. Am I missing something?