UPDATE: Should I file a claim?

Hosting for 6 weeks, first experienced this.

Family asked to bring in an infant even though my listing indicated kids below two is not allowed. Regardless I accepted their booking given the guest has told me this in advance. However, they left us with a really soiled duvet and duvet cover, not recoverable.

I bumped into the husband before they checkout and asked if they had a good stay, and he said it was good and his wife will text me after they checkout.

After they left the premise, wife texts me and said her infant son defecated on the sheets and got to the duvet cover. She tried washing it by putting it in the washing machine with bleach, and said she couldn’t get the stains out. Then in the text, she blamed it on the mould by my washing machine. The washing machine is not a possibility cuz I use the machine for turning over the premise.

Should I file a claim given I’m new, and also don’t want to be down graded in Air’s SEO?

I only charge U$45 a night and it costs about $55to replace the cover, $40 to replace the duvet. I do hold a $300 deposit for each stay.

The family stayed for 2 nights. Would appreciate any help.

Heck yes FILE!!! Arrg, so aggravating. You will need the receipts but if you don’t have them link to a retail page or an Amazon link with a comparable replacement. Hurry, you don’t have much time.

Honestly… who does this… I had twin boys and they never once pooped on a bed or a sheet. Never once. I was always sooooooooo careful!!!,


And guests should not have been trying to treat the stain and using bleach. Idiots! Then to blame you for a bad machine. Uggg. Stay home next time!


The duvet cover I bought from ikea is no longer available online. Does this cut my chances of getting a claim?

Should I just suck it up? I don’t even want to try if my chances of recovery is slim, and if it will hurt my SEO results cuz competition is very high in my area.

NO!!! Iit does nothing to your search results. Find one at Macy’s … how does anyone know it was IKEA. Don’t let these clods ride. Do not,be afraid to file a claim. Because you have a deposit it should go a little easier. Upload photos of the damaged ones and link to replacements. This has worked for me in the past.


What’s the impact if I file a claim now and the guest finds out, then leaves a less than 5 star review? (I need this final one to get to super host for July 1st assessment!)

Will she have the ability to leave a bad review after she saw I filed a claim?

Yes. But she may do so anyway. Then you would lose the claim and get a crappy review… I wouldn’t worry about the review…

There is also the chance to settle. For example… if you ask for $100 and she offers $75, and you take it, then both parties should be okay with settling. I never leave a bad review for a guest who has settled.

She might be afraid of a bad review from you so won’t leave one.

You KNOW that if she leaves a review after you file a claim it won’t be good and you will then get the chance to slam her, and I WOULD, so it is a bit of a chess game.


Write to the guest and say “we normally do not accept infants for possible reasons like this. However, we made an exception in your case, expecting that you would take responsibility for your stay.
I appreciate that you’ve admitted to your child soiling our duvet. Although we appreciate that you tried to fix the problem, if you have put it through the dryer while not yet fully cleaned you likely have permanently set the stain on our new bedding which will not be usable for future guests.
Assuming this is the case, we will have to replace the bedding after only a few uses. We therefore trust that you will take care of replacing the soiled bedding.”

PLEASE do not even think of “sucking it up” and covering the costs on this. You’re setting an unreal expectation for Air guests - that they can be irresponsible and get away with it. You deserve to be reimbursed. I might suggest that if they have had hundreds of uses you might prorate the amount, but these are practically new, for heaven’s sake.


Remember that Air is forcing people to take infants and might look at that statement as discriminatory??

Agree, a claim needs to be filed… guests cannot ruin your stuff and get away with it.


You’re right… you cannot claim that you don’t accept infants. But they could word it somehow, like @jackulas does in his. Maybe say something like “Our home isn’t set up for infants, but…”

Here’s how I do it|

I can accept parties of:

Two adults
one adult or
One adult and one older child.

Without saying not a fit for babies and toddlers, which I used to say but then removed it when someone here posted a scary story about people getting sued by some jerk for family size discrimination.


That is smart.

We do accept babies and toddlers, but I have a sheet that I send out to groups that have children. I advise them that they are responsible for any bedding that might be soiled, so they should take precautions before they arrive. It’s mixed in with some positive things (like what we provide for families with children and that we do our best to childproof the house, etc) and so far people really appreciate our proactive approach to hosting children.

This is definitely a reason that I might rethink our policies. I cannot STAND it when people do not take responsibility. Heck, if it were me I would bend over backward to try to make things right if I had inconvenienced someone in this way.


Yes file, no question about it.

I am going to say don’t file. High school students held a prom party at my strict “no parties” suite. They trashed it. Jumped on the bed, played karaoke all night with 12 guests (only 4 allowed). So much trash that cleaners couldn’t walk, food, booze, make up, bodily fluids on every towel, sheet, duvet, pillow. Condoms and dirty girls underwear strewn around. Damaged countertop needed to be replaced ($350). Destroyed a decorative pillow. It cost $700 total in clean up and damages. I had all receipts, witness statements, etc. Guest half admitted to it but didn’t want to pay. Air refused to contact me, just sent form message after 11 days declining and calling it wear and tear. I called air about 20 times. Their help centre is effectively an answering service for leaving messages and requests that no one is accountable to act upon. Save yourself the trouble. Just be glad it wasn’t worse.

I had a picture go missing and I couldn’t get it replaced from my deposit because the guest denied taking it. I then learned that you do not hold the deposit, air bnb does and they decide if you should get a payout. They will only release money to you if the other person says ok. They basically make you “bill” the guest and if the guest declines to pay themselves then you have to try to get it from air b n b… and if someone else checks in within 24 hours and you haven’t filed the claim I think they have the right to decline(fine print that shocked me)… anyway try to get the guest to pay something but I wouldn’t expect much if anything :frowning:

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I’m really sorry to hear you went through that. It happens way too often. How old did they tell you they were?? I assume you wouldn’t knowingly rent out a home to high school students.

You really need to get security cameras so you can see who is accessing your home. I do not understand it when people here way it is a violation of the rights of the guest. Your example is exactly why they are necessary.

Regardless of your experience, I still think @donduck should make a claim for something their guests made unusable.

They never told me how old they were. It is a human rights violation to ask. Cameras would be great. The only snag is that I would have had to have kept my eyes glued to the mundane comings and goings of guests for the past two years until this one time when it would have been useful. I would have had the opportunity to head over and throw them out before too much action had taken place. I think you would agree that no one has that sort of time.

The point is that %#@$ happens and realistically we don’t always have control over things. SUPPOSEDLY that is why Airbnb offer the host guarantee and why I take a $500 deposit. Airbnb are supposed to mediate and come to a fair agreement and make sure the host is reimbursed in an open and shut case like this. Like buying house insurance. You can’t always be sure your house won’t ever burn down so you buy insurance. The 15% they suction off the top of each booking is supposed to fund their faux insurance policy. The deposit does the same.

Airbnb are dishonorable and this is meted out through the results of their answering service. Sure, go ahead, make the claim. It’s always worth trying if you don’t value your time or expect to have your claim approved. You need to document everything, take before and after photographs, scan receipts, invoices, reiterate message history and put it all in an online claim. Is it worth the time? If you get ignored as I did it is not. It is not only time consuming but also distressing when you realize you did it all in vain. The best you can do is give them a bad review.

Better to use HomeAway or one of the other short term rental agents. That way you are in charge of your deposit and there isn’t a 3rd party enabling guests to damage your home at no cost to them.

I have similar experience. You need both the receipt and a link to same/similar products online. They also consider depreciation so don’t bother if these things are a few years old, the money you got back in the end may not worth your effort. It is annoying but I guess it is one of the facts to host on Airbnb. But if your thing is relatively new, it is definitely worth filing a claim. It is not right for the guest to take care of stain without telling you, plus they used bleach without telling you. Do you have label saying the item can be bleached? I don’t like these kind of guests :frowning:

I invested in a mattress protector. They make nice soft cotton-based ones that don’t feel like there is plastic on your mattress and allow it to breathe while protecting it from spills or (god help us) baby potty mishaps. I only allow adults and I still keep one on, because you are right. Guests just don’t care. They’ll spill wine, make-up, tanning oil or who knows what on your bed and just won’t care. So, especially if you accept little ones (for whatever reason), I highly recommend the mattress protectors.

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Thanks! I know I’ve seen them mentioned on here before, but can you tell me the brand you use if you’re happy with them?