Should I "Report This User"?

I had my first bad guest this week. Not extremely terrible - nothing broken or stolen - but they did make a mess of things, and clearly broke just about every house rule I have. Originally I was going to wait until the 11th hour to post a bad review (hat tip to the members on this forum for that advice) then it occurred to me that he could do this again within the next two weeks and maybe I should warn other hosts. So, I have a dilemma… I don’t want to review him now and run the risk of getting a bad review in return, but I do not want this guy to think he got away with something and keep doing it - at least within the next two weeks. So my question is: should I go ahead and review him and take my licks? How bad does a guest have to be before I use the “report this user” flag? What are the ramifications of using the “report this user” flag? Can he still review me?

Any thoughts, suggestions, insights would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Normally if breaking house rules (if they are in the booking page), I think you have right to contact air bnb that can cancel the client

Yea, if I had known about it earlier, I would have. But they are already gone so that’s not a problem. I’m just wondering how to handle it now - bad review now, bad review in 2 weeks, or report?

I agree with @sylvainbg - why didn’t you report the guest during his stay with you? Also it would be good to know what house rules he broke. You say that nothing was stolen or damaged so what was it that was so bad?

Remember that he won’t see what you’ve written until he’s written his review of you. So he can’t ‘retaliate’ to your review? Surely his review will be factual? This is, of course, unless you gave him reason to write a bad review. Just write an honest review (being factual and impersonal), give him the appropriate star ratings, tell Airbnb in the ‘is there anything you’d like to tell Airbnb’ section and then forget about the bad guest and move on.


Yes, sorry I suppose I should give some context…

a man booked for three nights for three people. No reviews, but verified, and a member since Aug. 2015. I met him, showed him around, showed him where the house rules and check out procedures were, and left. He seemed polite and reasonable.

About 4 hours later - about 10pm - I see that he has disconnected something from the internet, so I send him a message “hey, I noticed you disconnected something, is everything ok?” He calls me IMMEDIATELY and says “yea, sorry, my brother needed to charge his phone” which is just silly.

I’m a bit concerned now, so I keep an eye on the things that I can remotely - nest thermostat, door lock, router, etc. The thermostat goes up to 80 (I turn it down remotely). It goes back up again, I lock it at 73. Then nothing…nobody went in or out the door, turned the heat up or watched TV…complete radio silence for two days. I go by my place and peek in the window. Nothing seems to be amiss, so I wait it out. I wait until their checkout time, and enter to find the kitchen trashed - dishes and food everywhere.

It is clear that they used it for a party pad (rule 1 broke) - bed wasn’t slept in, towels were not used, etc. They also clearly smoked in my apartment - a window was left wide open - in January. In Wisconsin - and there was a cigarillo butt left on the bathroom counter (rule 2 broken) which I’m guessing is why they cranked the heat up. There was also muddy footprints throughout the house (rule 3 broken).

So, as I said it wasn’t “horrible”, it was a lot like cleaning up after a frat party. I will be more than happy to give them a bad review, but I suspect they’ll know that’s coming and have something they can hit back with. They’d have to make something up of course, since they weren’t there long enough to complain, and I do have his reply on Air saying everything was “great”. So maybe I’m worrying for nothing…

Who knows, maybe they were just clueless first time users that thought it would be just like renting a hotel room. It just seems like an expensive way to throw a party - close to $300!

It’s great that you have so much of the rental on remote control. You are lacking a camera on the entrance. By party pad do you mean he had guests he didn’t pay for. You’d see that on camera.

Yea, I’m thinking of getting one of those fancy camera doorbells. I do have a nice set of 4 security cameras - they just aren’t installed yet. The weather here has been, well, wintry. So I was going to wait a while to install the cameras. I may have to rethink that now.

So, no, no proof that he had more people than the three he paid for. What I do know is that the TV was at max volume, the bluetooth speakers were at max volume, and they ate enough food to feed a village, if what was in the garbage is any indication (pizza boxes, KFC boxes, etc). That screams “party” to me.

The other odd thing is that they paid for three people, three nights but spent maybe 6-7 hours total there…haven’t figured that one out yet.

Don’t report them yet. I think that flag is reserved for scam type guests, and there is a means for you to review the guest so please do that. I was told recently that the last minute time to review is your checkout time on the last review day. I haven’t had the chance to check and see whether this is true or not, plus there is the time zone difference to account for, so it’s a tricky business timing the so called sneak attack.

As for your particular case, I would open a case now and tell Air what the guest did. Hopefully you have taken photos and can provide documentation if needed. Make sure when you write the review to PLEASE open up their content guidelines page and make sure whT you write does not violate any of those things. As I have just learned, the slightest technicality can get the review removed. You have to make it all about your personal experience of the guest!
Don’t make assumptions either (I think the guest was smoking and had extra people over.) I learned the hard way!! Learn from my mistake!

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I was thinking about that just after I’d written my post above, Surely the person who gets in first has the upper hand?

Not the upper hand. It just gets two cases going.

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Are you saying that the guests checked in the first day and never stayed the night?

Did they eat any of the food they brought?

A window wide open for 3 days in the cold winter? Any idea what your electric bill looks like?

“Personal experience” eh? Both @tinyCar and I rent our whole houses - although she is able to get to her property while the guest is there. I am not. I wonder what Air considers personal experiences.

@konacoconutz, I wasn’t planning on opening a case, but maybe I should? As mentioned, they didn’t do any damage. Just left a big mess for me to clean up.

Thank you for the tip about making assumptions. I did take pictures - of the mess, the cigarillo butt, the discarded pack of tobacco - but I guess none of that PROVES they were smoking. There was a faint odor of smoke in the house. I normally have a great sense of smell, but am nursing a cold now, so who knows. Luckily I don’t have much in the way of curtains, and I have a cover on the couch, so I just washed everything and it seems fine.

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@cabinhost, yep, that is exactly what I believe happened. No one came or left the apartment or turned on the TV or turned up the heat or slept in the bed or used any towels (I washed everything anyway, to be safe).

They ate all of their food (and some of mine. My fault for not telling them specifically that the food in the freezer was mine I guess).

I guess we’ll see what the utility bill looks like in a few weeks. I am able to turn down the heat remotely - and did - but I’m sure it still had to kick on more often just to keep the minimum temp.

And thanks @jaquo for reminding me about the “is there anything you’d like to tell Airbnb” option. I’ll definitely use that. Do you know if I can mention the “I think” things there? Like the smoking, party etc?

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I don’t see any reason why you can’t say something like ‘because I found tobacco, I suspect that they smoked’.

Suspicions have no place in a review but I think it’s fine otherwise.

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NOT your fault if it’s obvious that you also live in this home. If it is a full time rental year round, no personal items in there (like my place) only then could I see the misunderstanding…as guests may have thought it was leftover from previous guests.

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Definitely. Whenever I’ve been in an entire home rental I’ve assumed that everything in the place is available for me to use.

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Yes I’m familiar with things being left by previous guests and open for use. This one can be a bit difficult though If there was A LOT then I would probably click it wasn’t there by chance .

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Yes, I see that now. I think its clear that I spend time here - I list in the house manual certain areas/items that are my personal items (the top shelf in the medicine cabinet, and one half of a built in hutch for example) and mention them when showing folks around, so guests do know that I have belongings here. But because I specifically list places/items that are off limits, I should also specifically list the freezer and its contents, and I didn’t. So I do accept fault on that. I only mentioned it because I’m just amazed at the sheer volume of food eaten in such a short period of time. Mind boggling, really. :astonished:

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