We Miss Hosting Now

It’s been more than four months since we holed up for pandemic isolation and stopped hosting. I’ve gotten used to it, until today.

We’d done and folded all our Airbnb laundry weeks and weeks ago. It was all put away in the linen closets. And the beds were bare.

Today, I made up both guest room beds. I thought it would make the house seem more “normal.” We have no one coming to stay, because we don’t let anyone inside our house but us. We also know that if anyone ever does come to stay, we’ll have to rewash everything and remake the beds.

But now as I walk past the rooms with their made-up beds, it makes me sad about having no Airbnb guests—and maybe not ever having them again.


The pandemic puts me a week into the sixth month w/o a guest and I’ll agree that there is an emptiness about it.

Luckily, I had a fully jammed 2019/2020 winter and was able to cover all the taxes (General Excise and Transient Accomodation Tax) that were due and have some funds to spare. My timing wasn’t the greatest when I booked the install of a new ductless a/c system AND a bath and kitchen remodel.

The a/c went in the first week of April and the remodel is still dragging on. This break has been ideal for these updates although the lack of income is tough.

If the place was empty instead full of stacks of porcelain, cabs, granite on the way, etc., I’d likely have feeling similar to you but I have other issues on my mind at this time.

Legally, STRs here cannot be rented out at this point, so I’m hoping that this pandemic gets sorted and my place will be situated well for a bump in the rate and a crowd of guests lined up to rent the place!

Enjoy your place while it is empty of guests!


No one knows what the future holds for any of us. Thank you for a gentle reminder.


While it certainly doesn’t make up for the lack of income, it’s nice to watch movies with full 5.1 channel sound and the subwoofer on, or crank up the stereo any time I want.

I do miss the activity and meeting new guests from all over the world. Oh, and the money.


I totally understand…however…we’ve had a “moment” this past week that has given us pause.

Some background: We stopped officially hosting in March although we’ve had two sets of guests come only because we’ve had them about 8 times each – so they know the drill. And it was good to see them, and the money that went with it.

However, one couple was due to come back last week and the night before she texted that her husband was in the ER with a raging fever and in pain. Yesterday she updated me that it was pneumonia and he was recovering in the ER. I’m glad to hear that it wasn’t COVID (I sincerely don’t think she’d tell me a mistruth) but I know they want to come back in September. My husband and I are still chatting as to whether we will agree… We let the space air out (open doors and windows) after the last visit and still when I went to get the bedding/towels, it was a pain to work in a mask and gloves and I thought “do I really want to do this?” And being able to use the whole house versus just the top floor was a bonus.

Bottom line, I really, really want to avoid the virus so I guess I just have to avoid guests as that is a higher level of risk than say, grocery shopping. Unfortunately it means we need to avoid extended, closed environment exposure to our college aged kids, too, as they are back on their respective campuses.


We were also tempted to allow our “regulars” to stay, knowing they would be responsible enough to maintain distance. But we just can’t do it. We’re both in our sixties with risk factors. We can’t face what would happen if one of us got seriously ill—or if we were responsible for spreading the disease to others.

So no guests. At least not until the world changes drastically.


We’re doing it with masks and gloves plus face shields, shoe covers, scrubs and scrub hats. And it is truly a PITA. I don’t recommend it if you can avoid it. We are both unemployed now because of the virus, but if we weren’t, I’d look into getting a personal loan or something instead of hosting.

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JJD, did you both apply for PUA for any time that your Airbnb biz was closed due to the pandemic?

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I did. The Airbnb income is under my name. Our governor was amazing getting the PUA program together so quickly and encouraged everyone to “go get your money, apply now”. I had it by April 7. But then, by the end of May, she had taken a 180 degree sharp and quick turn and got on a “we’re opening up this economy NOW and everyone needs to get back to work” track and has stayed steadfast on there even though our cases have been rising ever since. Once she opened back up, I had no excuse to not have the Airbnb open. We got tenants for 2 of the apartments but the 3rd apt doesn’t qualify for LTR because there’s not a full kitchen. We kept that one closed until mid-July but have been open on Airbnb since then.

My husband had a full-time job and got regular unemployment Mar19. All was well until he lost it in June when his employer reported him for refusing to return to work. He didn’t refuse (it appears that they were scamming on their PPP loan) so we fought it. We actually just won the appeal, after 2 months, last week and he got it back with retro pay. But the $600 supplement is what made it actually helpful. Now it’s better than nothing but not enough to live on.

It is such a hassle. But we are getting great guests and making money. A lot of places haven’t opened back up yet, including a huge downtown hotel who we compete with (they’re dog friendly, no pet fee), so the competition is less and the demand is oddly high. We are now getting for a studio what we used to get for a 2-BR and we doubled our cleaning fee. I would still rather not do it though.


Gosh, I’m sorry to hear about all that you’re going through. Best wishes to you.

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@RebeccaF My sentiments exactly. Luckily, I’ve been super busy with other things, but it’s sad that my Airbnb room is sitting there unused. I haven’t made up the bed, but I will soon, as I want to do a major cleaning of my own bedroom, which will take a couple of days, so I’ll go sleep in the guest room then. I do that once a year for a week or so anyway- I figure once the bed is made up I might as well sleep there until I figure the sheets need changing.

One thing I have enjoyed- the upstairs bathroom, which is between my room and the guest room with a door on each side that opens directly into the bedrooms becomes the bathroom for the exclusive use of guests when they are here and I use the downstairs bathroom. So I usually have to have a pee pail in my bedroom in case I have to go in the night or desperately first thing in the morning. Now I have the use of that upstairs bathroom.

I don’t have any underlying health problems, but I’m almost 71 and here in Mexico, they now have the 3rd highest number of COVID deaths of any country in the world. So no way am I taking any risks by having others in my home.
But I really miss hosting and my guests.


Best wishes to you for your safety and health!

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Neither do I, especially when it’s 40C plus!

It’s now part of our check out instructions to guests that they open all windows and leave all internal doors open, the majority of them get it, they know why we’re doing it and to date everyone has done it.

The recommendation in Europe, to avoid aerosol transmission, ventilate for 3hrs.

I’ll usually have a quick check, with mask and gloves, at some point after 3hrs but we leave it 24hrs before removing linens and towels etc and starting to clean.

Masks, gloves and a shower once done. All of our guests, bar one, since reopening have come from “hotspots” in Spain. So far, so good.


It is sad. We actually let a repeat guest, who is more like a friend now, stay in a somewhat isolated room in our home this week. We haven’t been open since March 5th. It is wonderful to see him. The experience has been positive because he respects our boundaries and is patient regarding our inability to be quite as open and warm as we used to be. Even he had to have a negative COVID test to even come into our state.


If all our bedrooms weren’t in the same wing of the house, meaning that we can’t be sure to avoid running into a respectful guest, we might consider opening one room to our well-known repeat stayers.

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Understood. We can only do this with one of three. Our third room is actually our own bedroom and I doubt that we will ever rent that one again.


@Everyone -
We are on 6 months…and we miss the guests. We are quite isolated here, and hosting is a real pleasure for us. Our last guests were in February. We shut our calendar for prudence. The guest wing of our house remains empty, gathering dust and spiders. We are both over 70, so we are not willing to risk our health. Now there is smoke from the wildfires, which often causes us to offer penalty free cancellations to our bookings. @Skai STR is banned here too, for health reasons. Our county is now on the map, after months of relatively few Covid cases. What the future holds for us all is uncertain.


Best wishes to you with all the things that are going on!

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Thanks, Rebecca. I’m pretty much laying low, and only go out briefly a few times a week, with one major shopping trip, masked up, once every 2 weeks.

Here’s something interesting- was talking to a friend in Canada yesterday- her son’s girlfriend went down to Texas, because she was enrolled in school there. Even though COVID’s been around in Canada as long as it has in the US, within one week of landing in Texas, she had contracted COVID. (Canada has had something like 127,000 infections, and 9,000 deaths, compared to the US at over 6 million infections and 186,000 deaths).

Good old Texas. We have over 600K cases, 12k deaths and a population of over 30M. I believe TX, like some other Republican states, is purposely undercounting. (This is by memory so #s aren’t precise.) And there are plenty of people who aren’t taking it seriously here.