Surprising bad experience from my current guest with their first Airbnb encounter

We usually rant here about bad guests…This was a change for me to hear this story.

Nice kids (geez, anyone under 50 is a ‘kid’ to me) checked in yesterday. From Chicago, for her birthday trip of several days. Stayed in Louisville, Ky the first night. I was shocked to hear their unhappy first experience with Airbnb…
Arriving at the property at 10 pm after 5 hours of driving. Was told to unload their belongings and then drive a ways offsite to park and then walk back (???). Upon coming into the property and looking around, the place had not been cleaned from the prior occupants. This is 10 pm, not two hours after the noon check out time they were aware of.
Wet towels on the floor, bedding piled, dirty diapers (yuk) in the unemptied trash, dirty dishes everywhere.
She called (apparently a property management service) to be advised. Was told they had ‘a few options’. Wait and they’d send ‘someone’ to clean it up. Clean it up themselves for a discount (really???), or wait a bit and maybe they could find them another one of their properties across town. And no apologies or explanations at to what had happened.
They decided to just bow out, requested a refund, and then scrambled to get a hotel room at that hour. Whew…not a good introduction to Airbnb for newbies! I was surprised that they had the courage to keep trying and come here!
They said they were so relieved to see Little Cabin…Poor things…


Make sure to tell the guests they should leave a review. The host (property manager) is responsible and needs to be reminded of it. I wonder what prior reviews looked like.


Yes, I told them. They assumed because they didn’t stay they couldn’t. I think I, as a guest, would be reluctant to stay on a property that was part of a ‘management group’, but then am not sure how one would know.


Click on the host’s picture, view their profile, see how many listings they have. It’s a pretty good giveaway if they have many.


I won’t stay at those properties if I have other choices. I generally won’t stay at a property whose host has more than a couple of listings. I really prefer “one host, one home.” I know there are some people here with more than one listing and probably even several hosts with multiple listings who are just fine. But if I know very little about a property then I can increase my chances of having a problem free stay by staying with someone who has one listing that they live at or near.

These substandard stays are all too common. Almost every Airbnb guest that I talk to about other Airbnbs has a story to tell. And most of them are in the “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything” camp. So many 4.5 star airbnbs should really be 3 star Airbnb’s and off the platform.


We are experienced guests who have generally enjoyed our various Airbnb stays. We are also hosts with an Airbnb facility in Thailand that has been consistently recognized as a Super host. We realize that there are various levels of accommodation with Airbnb but believe that, for the most part, hosts try to offer a pleasant experience for their guests. Unfortunately this wasn’t the case with our experience with this host. It was evident that the host wasn’t in the least interested in presenting a pleasant experience. The physical building was actually quite nice and the kitchen was expensively equipped. After that it was all down hill. Numerous light bulbs were not working and we had to switch around to have lights in the bathrooms. Towels and bedsheets were dirty and in the washing machine waiting for us to wash them. The ice maker didn’t work until we emptied out old ice. While the coffee machine was an expensive model it required special capsules for operation and there weren’t any. The second “b” in Airbnb was a joke as aside from no coffee there was nothing to eat. The carpets were stained and it was obvious some animal had lived there from the smell. The TV didn’t work and there was no WiFi. In going back to the posting at Airbnb we discovered that the host is actually a property management company.

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It seems there are a number of people in London who have over 100 properties each!

Yes there are as many bad airbnb hosts as there are guests. Unfortunately some of the bad hosts have multiple listings so they are over-represented everywhere! Hosts need to take that responsibility seriously because your guests have nowhere to go without you sometimes.

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I got some guest like that. it was midnight and I just finished cleaning my 4 bd house and was ready to go home when I got a request for one of my rooms. I was surprised like who would book me at midnight? It was a sweet young couple from Poland, on vacation in the US and their rental was crappy, like you said, with cockroaches and stuff so they decided to look for something else. they were so happy to stay at my house.

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A couple of years ago I had a day between bookings. This was fine as I’d privately scheduled myself to do a super-clean of the apartment. But mid afternoon Airbnb called. I hadn’t blocked off the day, just in case, and sure enough Airbnb wanted to know if I could have a guest for just the one night.

She had been let down - not just by one host but by two.

She had arrived at her first place and it just wasn’t ready. It looked as though it needed hours of work. She called Airbnb who arranged another place for her near to he original one. She got there and found the exact same thing - well, even worse.

I agreed to host her for the night and she was a lovely guest. I did see though that part of my job was to restore her faith in Airbnb and she said that I had :slight_smile:

But it’s interesting to note that both the properties that had let her down were run by management companies that were in charge of several properties.


I was snooping in and the newer bad-host stories are about rentals via Airbnbs with property managers , not owner hosts.


I’m not surprised. There are a lot of unscrupulous money-grabbing people out there. Jings, some of them are even running countries…or aiming to.

The home-stay aspect of Airbnb is not sufficiently lucrative financially for big business and has changed massively since the early days, as we all know. Despite all the corporate bullshit and the push for entire rentals, there are still many of us doing it old-school successfully.

Right now I have a young South Korean guest. It is his first time travelling and his first time using Airbnb. He doesn’t speak much English and he had a lot of anxious questions before he arrived. As an old hand at this, I’ll be honest and rolled my eyes thinking oh crikey, here’s another needy guest.

Tonight we had a lovely moment together. He has been travelling through Europe and seemed a bit lost and homesick but wanting to be correct and respectful. He’s such a sweetheart. I made him laugh with my miming of the cat being grumpy and it was so nice to see him smile and relax.

It made me realise that actually I like this aspect of hosting. I suppose I’m quite motherly even though I pretend not to be and it’s kind of nice to think that someone from another part of the world has a good memory of their time in my city.

Before I get too dewy-eyed… he will leave a 3* review for sure!


I have often wondered about management companies. While it may appear because we have several listings that we would use some outside services we don’t. We do everything ourselves …which at times can be challenging but we have managed for the last 3 years. I will say it has surprised some of our guests when I arrive and start cleaning a tub or changing out a room. Or arrive at 2 a.m. because the guest has an issue that needs to be addressed right away. I am not a fan of management companies, I prefer the personal touch.


I have had several guests surprised that I did everything myself too. One did an extra conscientious job cleaning up after their family before leaving once she learned that!

I am the lawn scraper (mowing, trimming and even installing new sod, spraying the brush along the fence perimeter, cutting and splitting fallen trees, raking and bagging and burning leaves), the sanitation engineer (property tax includes use of the town dump big I have to transport the trash), I separate, transport turn in and the recycling and donate the proceeds. I pressure wash the house and concrete.

Pretty much the only outside services are the pest service I use to prevent fleas as I am pet friendly. Oh, and after a horrible guest used my kitchen counters and yard as an ashtray and my floors as food trash dumps I got a cleaning service to come in and help me deep clean. But I was working right along side them.


Is this from Airbnb guests? The rental I manage is almost exclusively BDC and fairly high end. I’ll be honest and say that I pretend not to be the cleaner when I greet them even though I am. Some people are snooty and won’t respect you otherwise. I have a posh voice so they believe me :wink:

Sometimes when it’s a quick changeover I take a change of clothes and my make-up bag in case I don’t manage to finish in time. Oh and my very expensive perfume, of course.


I always aim to get the turnover done an hour in advance so that I can shower, change, add makeup … and perfume, of course.

I don’t want the guests to be greeted by me in old cleaning lady mode - it’s too frightening :slight_smile:


Yes, even my physio told me a story about him and his parents staying in what looked like a nice AirBnB property which was pretty bad. Then again it had a 4 star rating and he thought that meant it was quite good.

Yes. There is no pretending posh about my nice double wide modular in a neighborhood of foreclosures…

And for my shared listing people don’t expect a pro for just a bedroom and bathroom, I don’t think. Especially since I still have a dining room still full of boxes since I haven’t fully moved since retiring from 24+ years in the military.

They will often see me in lawn mower gear or trash lady pickup gear so seeing me in jeans and a T-shirt at check in is just par for the course. Maybe when I get my foreclosure lake house fixed up I can play the posh host. But I will be charging prices that go with it too!!!

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I can assure you they are rating the room, not you, if my experience is any measure. My guests are lucky I have clothes on.