What are the best and the worst things a guest has left behind in your property?

That was nice but one of my guest left behind a mattress cover soaked in blood and sheets too. The cleaner lady was horrified.

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Something we often are “gifted” is coffee mugs from tech companies. My theory is that our guests pick them up at conferences or interviews but decide they don’t want to have to pack them. So we have Microsoft, Google, Blue Origin, Amazon, Workday, Intel, Expedia, and Boeing mugs. Some of them are clearly made by the same manufacturer and are the same shape and colors, just different logos. I don’t think I’ll need to buy a mug for the rental any time in the next decade.

The most annoying things (in addition to the standard left-behind undies) has been great big broken suitcases or camping gear – broken zippers or latches, damp mildewed damaged tents and stinky ripped sleeping bags. They leave them in the trash, and even broken down as much as possible, they take a lot of space and we end up with too much trash and have to do a dump run. I hate being one of those excessively rule-bound hosts and writing an encyclopedic house rules book, but I’m almost to the point where I will make a rule that I charge for dump runs for excessive trash like that. I already provide information and a link for the closest transfer station/damp and request that guests make use of it. I think it happens to us fairly often because we are close to the airport, so we are often the first or last night stay of a trip.

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I understand your reluctance to create encyclopedic rules.

If something happens rarely it might be best to accept it as a cost fo doing business.

But if it’s not rare, it’s best to create a rule (the trick is how to make it succinct). That way you have a basis for reimbursement AND it’s a communication of expectations for those who read. We have put a one-pager of rules in each bedroom, now in a drawer when a recent guest felt that having these out was a little ‘intimidating’ and also in a spiral-bound manual in the kitchen.

Weird, I thought I’d posted some replies on this thread but they’ve disappeared completely.
However, I know i wasn’t dreaming because I can see someone quoted me above.

Anyone else have this issue or is it just me?

Best: (1) An unopened, brand new iPhone that arrived a week after the guest stayed there. Unclaimed. (2) $500 in cash, all $1 bills. Unclaimed. (3) 5 handles of decent vodka

Worst: Rolled up $1 bills on a plate, shoved in a dresser drawer


The worst were car mats from a rental car. The guest took the mats out to wash and promptly forgot to put them back, resulting in frantic messaging to have them sent overnight to the rental car company so the guest wouldn’t get charged. Bit of a nightmare.

The best is whenever a guest leaves a tip for my cleaners. Smiles all around :).


We mostly get a single contact lenses, stray socks and hair ties. Though occassionally we’ve gotten a tip left in the snack basket.

However, there was a woman who left a small crystal in each room. I supposed she cleansed the apartment for us. That’s cool.

And before I was familiar with these, we found a used one left behind by a woman traveling with her son that was interviewing at the local Ivy. My husband asked, “is this like a sex thing?”. I didn’t know what to think.

In case anyone is unfamiliar, it turned out to be this:



A recent guest left a fleece pullover, said t was sentimentally valuable and could we please send it to him.

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The best things guests have left behind is friendship. We have a lot of new friends, some of them local, from our Airbnb hosting.

There is no worst thing.


Same here. Never had a guest leave anything gross behind. Well, one messy young couple did leave about 50 pieces of wadded up toilet paper under the bed, and I can pretty well imagine what they were used for, but it only took a minute to sweep up.

And guests have left useful things, and some nice food items, or a bottle of wine or brought me little gifts. I have kept in touch with several guests.

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I wonder if the guest offered to pay for shipping.

We’ve had only a few guests leave something. In one case the guest offered to pay shipping and we gifted it as our treat to them (really the shipping is not the real cost; it’s the boxing of it, time to get it together and to the post office and right away). The other guest didn’t offer to pay anything. We sent it anyway, said we were happy to do so, but it kind of amazed me.

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We had a guest that got stuck in town when everything shut down at the start of the pandemic. Their original three week booking ended up turning into two months. When he checked out he said he had left some stuff for us in the apartment.

He left us a $750 espresso machine that he had only purchased a week before, a $700 pool cue, over $2,000 in unopened bottles of scotch (one bottle alone was $450), and several other smaller items.

During his stay we would often see him standing on the couch looking out the front window (we live in the apartment below) watching the birds etc. He didn’t need to stand on the couch to see out, it’s a big window. He told me at one point that he had damaged the webbing by standing on it and wanted to pay to fix it. I told him not to worry, I professionally do upholstery and was planning to redo the entire couch soon anyway. When I went to work on it I discovered he had left an envelope with $800 in it.

He was a great guest!

Oh, and he also purchased a bunch of clothes online that he paid me to alter.


I thought One Fine House would be the winner but you’ve pulled up and it’s neck and neck.


guest willingly leaves money for possibly damaging an old couch, after the host says it’s not a big deal? that’s the winner !!

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The worst was condoms on the floor and dirty underwear under the sofa’s cushion. The best was Ben & Jerry’s Chunkie Monkey non dairy ice cream : ) It was yummy.