Should a previous host leave recommendations to someone hosting them?

I still love reading airhosts forum even though we sold our listing last year. My spouse had a serious health crisis and we rented several airbnbs and one Vrbo while he had his treatments. I was really happy that every place we went to was super clean and we were really happy with each rental. . I found things at each listing that the owners probably needed to know but probably didn’t.
In all cases I either messaged them privately or left them the info on the private message in my review. Examples: a few pans that had lost most of the Teflon, an outlet that was worn out and no longer made connection and kept cutting out the TV, a back door that was sticking badly, a condo which had old pictures that did not reflect the nice new floors and furniture updates.The outlet problem had been misdiagnosed as a TV problem and the manager was very appreciative that my husband —-a retired contractor— solved it for her and she promised to have it replaced.
I am remembering that as a host I was once annoyed about a guests recommendations, and now that the shoe is on the other foot, I am wondering if I should have been. I did recommend this forum to a new host. Their place was really beautiful and they were lovely hosts. I was actually worried that someone might take advantage of their newbie status. How much should or should we not say?


Maybe it depends on the “recommendation”, but I appreciated being told about real problems with my listing as soon as possible before they show up on a review, and so I could get parts to prepare for the repair, and perform the repair before the next guest.


My rental is in tip top shape and the one time I had a guest pointing out “improvements” it was more laughable than annoying. He said I needed an alarm clock, but there’s one in the room. He suggested I get a better bathroom exhaust fan but the bathroom was only 2 years old at the time and that room also has a window.

That said, I do appreciate suggestions and I implement them when possible.

The things you mention are important and valid. A sticking door is something they should have taken care of. A plug might not be noticed though.

I had a brief power outage here last night right in the time frame guests were due to arrive. So I rushed in there to check the lamp I have with battery backup and sure enough, batteries were dead. I change all the remote batteries yearly and periodically check to make sure they haven’t been stolen but forgot about the lamp. If the guests had been in there I would have been telling them to use that lamp and would have embarrassed myself.


If the host does their own cleaning or even inspects after the cleaning, I think they might catch more. If I remember, you do that. At one place the thermostat battery light was flashing —you could see it across the room —but they had a cleaning service and I guess the cleaner says nothing to the manager. The thermostat made it for our stay but the next guest may have been different. At another place 3 of the vertical louver blinds were broken and fell right off when I opened the blinds. I asked the manager to fix those during our visit for privacy.The manager actually walked thru with us and neither of us noticed it until after he left. I see real benefit in managing and cleaning your own place when you can or stuff will get missed


I do not need “recommendations” from other hosts, but I like it when a guest (host to not) they inform me about damages and malfunctions. (Al lot of things are not noticed when cleaning.)
Most recommendations hosts are things they would do, but I chose not to. (Like the AirBnB recommendations to lower my price, or lower my minimum stay.)

But when something is broken, it should be fixed, and I hate it when a guest breaks something or noticed its broken and doesn’t inform me.


What about stains, or knives that are super dull? I did not say anything to the host about the knives, but should have I? So at one place I noticed a big stain on the like new dining room chair.I mean her place was otherwise spotless and I was a little worried I would get blamed for it. I messaged the host. She did not know about the stain but she was a new host and said she had had some guests that were reported to be “very messy” by the cleaning lady before me.So you could see if you found 2 - 3 things like this at every listing how the host might worry you are going to give them a bad review and you start feeling like you might be a PIA. I would not give a bad review over stuff that I think a host could easily miss or could be hidden damage from a guest.So maybe at the end of the visit send the “list” prefaced by “This is not going to affect my review of your place but thought you might want to know” or something to that effect


Me too. The guest suggested that we should have a coffee maker. The coffee machine is the only appliance that is out on the counter and is clearly shown in the photographs of the kitchen. :roll_eyes:

But in answer to the original question, if there are problems with a rental then definitely point them out. I’d say something in the review (probably something like ‘a few niggly problems’ rather than enumerate them) but a host should know. That can be in a private message, email or face-to-face conversation.

When an Airbnb host has a less-than-fantastic place it’s going to lead first time guests to think that ALL Airbnb rentals are like that. That’s not what most hosts want.


Most of the ‘recommendations’ I have received tended to be wishlist ideas that are either impractical or absurd (“ you should have another bathroom for the bedroom attached rather than down the hall”) or are examples of “guests do not read”. Telling me to allow pets or smoking? Nope.

I prefer an immediate communication about issues that can be resolved. Waiting until checkout to tell me that the toilet seat was wobbly helps nobody.


I am sorry that your spouse had a serious health crisis, ands hope all is well.

In my opinion the private messages you left these hosts was kind, generous and thoughtful. For me the key is that they were private.

I proactively solicit from guests both their public review and private messages that tell me how we could have made their stay more enjoyable. I very much appreciate such private messages, as the manager expressed to you.

@chris makes a useful distinction between private messages about things that are broken/need repair (these are always welcome I would think) vs. business practices vs. wishlist ideas.

Yes, I think you were right to mention the stain. I would mention the dull knives too, again not as a ‘complaint’ but as potentially useful information for the Host. I think I would write this is a private message with the review, not in an email on the platform because the Host might worry, despite your disclaimer, that your review might not be stellar and regardless Airbnb would see it, though they might see it anyway via the private message. Just my two cents – hope offering this is not off-putting!

I agree with @rolf that matters like a wobbly toilet seat (but not the stain, right?), that affect the quality of your stay should be communicated in real time, also because the longer the repair is deferred some avoidable additional wear and tear could occur. If it’s not important to you that they are fixed right away you can say that. But in my opinion you want to avoid a series of messages as you discover things that could sound like whining despite your good intentions. So a private message after the review about matters that you don’t care much about that you think might be helpful to the Host, said that way, could only be helpful in my view.

Even though your advice is ‘unsolicited’ a fair Host will appreciate your good intentions and appreciate the free input about matters that reasonably can be expected to be things Hosts care about and might otherwise might not be aware of.

Everything slowly getting better but what a ride! Thank you. I actually had the experience of being turned down by several hosts who probably did not want to rent to someone getting treatment. They had suddenly filled their calendar—-not— but can understand the uncertainty of having an ill guest. I took the chance with some new hosts as they had more flexible cancellation schedules just in case. I did upfront request an early check in from one host as we were rolling from one Airbnb to another and my hubby was too sick to wait the 3 hours between. They were immediately booked and could not accommodate us. I checked the listing later and they were wide open. Understandable but it was disheartening. think I will stick to the private messaging during the review except for things I think need to be addressed right away seems like a good plan!

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Absolutely give constructive feedback privately. We ask for it after they checkout (“Is there anything we should do differently or change?”). Depending on the issue, we either 1) address it immediately, 2) wait until three guests mention it within a reasonable period of time and then address it or 3) thank them and ignore it.

Just be sure you don’t start with “I’ve been a host and you need to fix”.

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We’ve had many, many threads here where request for early check in is seen as a red flag and yes, one solution is to block off the days. I can’t imagine that I’d do that to someone who asked as part of the booking request and gave a rational explanation. Of course we also tell people that if they need early check in they need to book the night prior.

Your post is a good reminder that there are real people on the other end of our policies.


Agreed! That would be pretty tacky and that is how I did not want to sound!

I’m so sorry to hear ‘so slowly’ but optimistic in hearing ‘what a ride!”

But then:

“They were immediately booked and could not accommodate us. I checked the listing later and they were wide open. “

I am so sorry @Mountainhost. Maybe I am missing something. How could Hosts possibly react like this?? Please someone educate me.

I’m with you in voicing your opinions to our fellow Hosts; they’re part of our community. Each is, or should, be keenly interested in elevating the community, ‘uppin’ our collective game.

To be sure, you might encounter immature, narcissistic hosts who might snipe at you. Maybe they’ll quibble about your word choice, saying the wobbly toilet isn’t broken, it just needs maintenance. This is a feature not a bug; that doesn’t need replacement; it can be repaired.

Or they’ll say that your opinion is unsolicited, unwanted, even wrong (as it conflicts with theirs). They might say that your suggestion is not an opinion at all, just a condescension, that you’re disrespecting that they are a Super Host, have been for years, that they know how to maintain their property.

So, be prepared, dear friend, for just the possibility of such petty, boorish behavior. I hope you never experience it. Fair-minded hosts, adults, true members of the Airbnb community will see and feel your true intentions, feel your kindness and generosity in reaching out to them, and in their heart feel gratitude and your deepest respect and professionalism for the endeavor in which we all participate.

If you permit me to philosophize here, Life is not a popularity contest. Fair-minded adult hosts will appreciate where you’re coming from; the petty few will not, maybe cannot. My Italian grandmother would say as I best remember, “Devi morire un po’ per andare in paradiso.” You have to die a little to get into heaven.

My best wishes for you. How are you now? How are you both? Can we help? How can we help? Please tell us.

Everything really is better. My husband remains immune compromised—in the middle of a pandemic no less— and It was strange to be the only one wearing a mask at Safeway today. That’s actually a great thing , too! I was sad to have to sell our Airbnb; I really loved doing it, but I could not do it without hubby. Fortunately, he made it through his stem cell transplant and I still have him. We were blessed to make top dollar on the duplex, as we hit the market at the peak… We were so lucky. I sold all my furnishings etc… to my sister who started a furnished rental in Montana. It fit her place perfectly! It was a win win. Someday someone who has stayed with me in Arizona is going to look at her listing and say. “Hey, where did I see this place before?” Thank you for your kind words and keep helping those new hosts as you have helped me!

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I don’t want to get too far in the weeds with the politics of this but that’s another infuriating thing about our policies. We still have more people dying of covid now than we did in summer of 2020. The loud minority yelling about their rights care nothing of the immunocompromised and children too young to be vaccinated. Luckily here in El Paso I don’t feel out of place wearing a mask and many businesses are still encouraging it.


I’m an in-home host and I encourage my guests to tell me if anything at all is amiss. I want to fix it in real time and I also listen to suggestions about what works for them during their stay and what’s extraneous.

My current guests are experienced ABB people and we have a lot in common and - small world - mutual friends. So I’ve asked what works and what doesn’t and so far they say they have everything they need.

Next guest is fragrance free, so my place should totally work for her.

There have been guests who have made comments that are things I can’t do anything about or that I’ve taken steps to remedy - like working out of my bedroom on the other side of the house instead of the room down the hall from the guest room on their side of the house. One guest complained about that even though she watched me move my laptop out of the office and I told her I’d be out of their hair. Then again, she was a PITA.

Wow! This is your house!

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Down to 10 cases last week in our town. People must feel wrung out and done. I wish I could be sure everyone in Safeway was immunized so I could be sure they would survive it if they were unlucky enough to be one of the last ones here to get it, but I would not count on them being vaccinated…

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I have a Victorian duplex that is 150 years old. It is furnished with antique and reproduction furniture that suits the age of the building.
My guests choose me because they like older buildings or the price point for a 2 bed apartment is similar to a room at a local motel.
My accommodation is booked by our local hospital for visiting specialists.
I had one Dr refuse to stay as he didn’t do doilies ( Lacey place cloth’s - I have 3)
Hospital had paid in full, did not ask for a refund and I had my favourite
No stay all pay, no clean!