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Hi , We have been running our Airbnb property for two years now and have just encountered a new and distressing issue with the Airbnb Security deposit.
We have a property which sleeps 16 , recently we had a guest stay who had booked for 16 but had 34 people sleep for two nights. We have multiple exterior security cameras on the property which allowed us to count all 9 cars arriving and disgorging guests fully equipped with sleeping mats and sleeping bags! The cameras also have audio capabilities and one guest can be clearly heard saying they have 34 staying.
So naturally we want to be paid for the extra 18 guests.
We have a security deposit of $3000 clearly stated in our listing. We made a claim with the Resolution Centre within the required time period and with comprehensive evidence of the extra guests.
Airbnb now tell us that the guest who booked the property is not taking their calls or responding to their communications. Airbnb tell us because they cannot communicate with the guest they can not assist us with our claim, leaving us with no compensation for the extra guests. We would love to know if others have experienced this issue with the Resolution Centre and how we can go about getting the guests to pay up what is rightfully owed. Thank you in advance.
I am sorry to hear this happened, but can I ask why you didn’t ask Airbnb to cancel the booking and go over to evict the guest when you saw this on your security camera’s @anthony146 rather than letting double the number of guests stay?
It is ridiculous for Airbnb to say that you can’t claim on the deposit because they can’t reach the guests, they already have authority to charge the payment method they used.
Go into their T&Cs about the deposit and quote this in your social media comments.
I would suggest you post publicly on their FB and Twitter.
Thanks Helsi, Evicting that number of people at night, just my wife and I, was considered impractical. Potential for altercation and recriminatory damage to property, we thought better of it. Too their credit, apart from some minor damge issues, they left the house in remarkably good condition, we just want to be paid appropriately. Yes we are hitting up social media.
This seems to be a recent thing with Airbnb. It’s ridiculous to think someone can just not answer their phone as a way of getting out of a claim on their deposit.
Remind the CS agents that the guest ALREADY AGREED to the deposit amount at booking. I wrote an extensive reply with links to TOS which back this up. Their TOS support them charging against deposit, unilaterally, if the guest doesn’t reply to the resolution center claim within the specified time.
I must be reading too many news, but Anthony, just let’s assume something major happened during the party. The house burns down, the deck collapses, a few minors pass out drunk … What would be your insurance company take on that? You observe the extra guests, but fail to take any action?
Perhaps you need to do it like Debbi and have your aunt move in across the street …
How can dicey can it get if there are minors drinking themselves stupid in your hours and then crash the car? I am sure the parents will sue in a heartbeat …
Just about acouple of months ago I read that this now has also arrived in Costa Rica: adults renting Airbnb houses, then staging an underage drink binging event … cops were called, all minors returned to their guardians etc
I understand that you and your wife were scared to confront the guests (although I wouldn’t have been, just a side note) but @AlexSJ’s comments need to be taken into careful consideration. Remember, you did nothing except expect Airbnb to sort things out for you. We pay them only a small fee, a fraction what we’d pay for our own advertising, and those fees would go up enormously if Airbnb had to sort things out every time a host had problems.
In my part of the world the police are reluctant to get involved in minor cases but when you have a situation where a house is occupied by more than double the number of guests it is registered for, they will pay attention.
Presumably your license from your city/local authority only permits 16 people. Presumably your insurance only permits 16 people and only covers you for that amount. In these circumstances, particularly the first, the police will intervene. Local laws and codes are being broken, the place is a hazard.
Unfortunately, you let the guests stay. As @Helsi said, you didn’t call Airbnb as soon as you were aware of the problem. This property must be worth much more than mine - mine can only accommodate two people and that’s a squeeze - so I do wonder why you didn’t contact the police or Airbnb at least as soon as you knew that there were numerous strangers in what must be one of your most valuable possessions?
It makes sense that a guest breaking the rules with many guests won’t answer the phone. Probably couldn’t hear it anyway.
I do, however, believe you should have gone over and at the very least personally checked to see what was going on on your own property. For all we know it might have been an AA meeting, but that’s a mighty big number and a lot of exposure.
Thanks for the replies. While the group was 34 people, they were not ‘partying’ , consuming large amounts of alcohol or a being a threat to the property or neighbours. They were families with young children, enjoying a rural holiday…unfortunately there were just too many of them.
We live in a rural community 20 mins from the nearest main town, the Police Station is not manned 24/7. The Police in our jurisdiction consider such issues to be ‘Civil’ matters, “you let them onto your property by choice and for private profit and until you have evidence of criminal behaviour or damage we won’t become involved” …we can all have our own opinions on that
My opinion is thatt the police are oerfectly correct they shouldn’t be wasting tax payers money and their time on civil matters @anthony146 If you don’t feel able to handle this aspect of running this part of your Airbnb business yourselves can you not have a local co-host or friend you could pay to help out?