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Studios listed as 1-Bedrooms


#1

As someone who obsessively checks out my local market, I like to use the search filters to find listings similar to mine (a 1-bedroom) and see what they’re renting for. I find many studio apartments listed as a 1-bedroom apartment. Studios should be listed as “zero” bedrooms, which triggers AirBnB to say “studio” rather than “1-bedroom” in the listing description.

I complained to AirBnB Help on Twitter, and they suggested I flag the inapporpriately listed studios. I pointed out that some of the studios showing up as 1-bedrooms are Plus listings and there is no way to flag them.

I don’t have a question–I just wanted to post this rant because I don’t think AirBnB wants to fix this issue. If I were a traveler, I would certainly want an easy way to filter out studio apartments if I wanted a true 1-bedroom (an apartment with a living room separate from the bedroom).


Airbnb PLUS is a BUST!
#2

That’s annoying. My personal pet peeve is places that are 3 towns over, different zip code, and a 30 minute drive in bad traffic appearing within the top ten listings when you search my town. They appear way above Super Host listings that actually are walkable to the town in question.

In the title you could call your place a “real one bedroom.” I’ve seen that term in NYC apartment rental sites.


#3

I would be well annoyed to find myself confronted with a studio if I thought I’d rented a 1 bedroom apartment. I’d cancel and ask for my money back.


#4

YES! I go through this all the time. When I travel with my husband, we only need one bedroom for sleeping but a studio won’t do, because he goes to bed earlier than I do. With a true one bedroom place, I can stay in the living room and watch TV or read. In a studio apartment, I cant do that.

IMO, a studio is too much like a hotel room–and quite often not as nice as a decent hotel. I use AirBNB because I want the separate living room and kitchen.


#5

This is an excellent suggestion. I don’t have a kitchen so I call my listing a “1-bedroom suite,” but I’ve seen others in my city say, “full 1-bedroom” in the title.

I suppose Airbnb could say, “well it says studio in the listing title,” but it’s still annoying having to scroll past these that show up when I’ve specifically entered 1-BR into the search parameters.


#6

Bingo.

I’d love to have a designation that accurately indicates what my place is like. An ensuite bedroom with private entrance and no shared spaces. I won’t label it “entire space” because I don’t want anyone expecting a kitchen.

Take comfort in knowing that anyone who calls a studio a one bedroom is over promising and under delivering and it will probably reflect in their reviews over time.


#7

You’re right. The studios listed as 1-bedrooms have 4.5 stars or less and reviews that say “smaller than expected.” I’m curious how some of these listings made it into the Plus program.


#8

Knowing what I know about Airbnb I’m not suprised. But could it be that they had higher ratings and Plus category brought higher expectations and now they dropped in their average?


#9

Yes, one listing I have in mind has been around for about five years and had hundreds of reviews. Perhaps those will drop as more Plus guests stay. I wonder if you get kicked out of Plus for too many 4-star reviews like we get kicked out of the Superhost program.


#10

Thanks for the info. I’m a new listing and my place is an open loft. I listed 1 bedroom as it didn’t occur to me that I could list 0 for the bedrooms. I also didn’t see that I could have the queen bed and the sofa bed both listed in the common space. Changed mine and to me it will alleviate some questions. I’m also posting a floorplan showing the overall layout so they can see that the bed, living area with sofa bed and kitchen are all in the open loft and the bathroom is separated.


#11

Hopefully this will help you avoid the negative review that lofts sometimes get: that there was no privacy between the two couples who book.


#12

My place is listed for 2 people, so I would not generally get 2 couples looking at my place. I do, however, get groups of girls coming for a girls getaway to the mountains who are willing to all sleep in the same room who are happy with the sofa bed as additional sleep space. Or a family with young kids who don’t mind sharing the space.


#13

I would think that if someone took the time to look at the photo’s they could see that it is a Bachelor flat
( studio flat)?

I agree that when your practice is to deceive guests into booking it will come back and bite you…


#14

This is my pet peeve too!!! Especially when I’m searching for places to stay. When I travel I usually like staying within walking distance of things. I don’t want to be shown places far away. It really irks me that even when I zoom in the map it still shows me places outside the map area if there aren’t enough within the map area. I don’t care if there’s only 1 place in my map area, I want to see only that one!! Then I’ll decide whether to expand the map.


#15

Yes but if you’re browsing and looking for something specific (a 1 BR), you don’t want to waste time clicking on listings or scrolling through photos that turn out to be studios.


#16

I wish they still had the key word search too; our unit has a view, and our lead photo is of the view (and in our title), but it would be nice if folks could search by that. I would use it myself because I love to have a view when I travel.


#17

I think you could list that as “entire place” no problem? Entire place doesn’t necessarily mean kitchen. I have 2 zero bedroom studios listed as “entire place” although occasionally get asked if it has a kitchen.


#18

I probably could but I feel that what I’m doing is working okay. I’m just afraid it would increase the number of people thinking they get the whole house or too many questions about a kitchen.


#19

I followed the canned “advice” from the CS Twitter, and flagged the incorrectly-listed spots. Nothing has changed two days later. I filled out the feedback form as well but I have a feeling my comment just disappeared into a void.

One of the reasons these incorrectly categorized listings irritate me so much is because I think listing as a 1-bedroom instead of studio pushes them up in the search ratings. AirBnB says one of the factors in the search ratings is a “competitive price,” so the system will think a 1-bedroom as $50 a night is a better deal than a studio apartment at $50 a night.

In my own observations, if I ask for what I think my listing is worth, it is buried deep in the search results. If I drop my prices closer to the price tips, it it starts showing up on the first page of my neighborhood.

I think what I’m frustrated with is another example of the AirBnB system directing us to “race to the bottom.” In the slow winter months, if I want exposure, I have to drop my rates to match tiny studios as well as decrepit STR buildings with abysmal reviews. Price seems to be the ultimate factor in listing rankings, rather than reviews or host reliability. I know I have clearly the quality listing (Superhost, over 100 5-star reviews) but I am not certain it is allowing me to actually charge more.


#20

I just did an incognito search for my place. I searched for tonight/2 people/private room. No other filters and came up 2nd. If I took off “private room” and competed with entire places I was 8th. Since this is for tonight there aren’t so many places. This is on the website with the map showing and while it says there are 113 places it didn’t look like so many on the map. It also, very much to my exasperation, includes places in Juarez, MX. In the search for private rooms I am the highest priced on that first page of results but and still 2nd. I have the most reviews. The #2 in review number and time on airbnb, with a room very similar to mine is $48 instead of $50 but 2 spots behind me in search.

I then went to search Seattle. Same search parameters at first, just tonight, 2 people. This was on the first page of search, just clicking the red search button and it took me straight to Plus homes and there are 24 of them available tonight. I clicked back and went to just homes using the drop down menu for homes and it still puts a couple of plus listings at the top. Anyway, now I put in entire place and superhost. I’ve also clicked on the map so I have a central centering

In other words I’ve searched the way I would on my own searches. Normally I would also turn on instant book but didn’t on this search. You came up 16th and on the first page. That seems pretty good. I realize you probably aren’t going to have anyone looking to stay in your neighborhood on a snow weekend tonight. But the problem seems to be too many listings. There are just so many spots on the first page. If I do a search for a spring weekend in April, on the same map you disappear. And for tourists I’d want to stay closer to the attractions. If I’m driving through I want to stay near the interstate. And for me personally I’d love to stay close to the light rail if it’s competitively priced.

I feel that when I upgraded my space I didn’t get any pricing power but I was able to keep the pace of bookings.

So I don’t know if it makes you feel better or worse but with all the competition it seems like the fact that you come up on the first page of any search is good.


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