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What new hosts and guests often do not understand about Airbnb

Because all of us hate to read the fine print, I did not understand until MUCH LATER than Airbnb ONLY provides a way for guests and hosts to communicate through their convenient platform. They provide no liability insurance to either guest or host, no criminal background checks, no way for host or guest to guarantee against property lost, stolen or damaged (unless it is so outrageous the press gets wind of it.) This is the much-vaunted “trust” part which, if you’ve become cynical like me, also could be translated as “gullibility.” As guest or host it is up to US to READ EVERYTHING and check each other out. I suspect I inadvertently hosted a lot of sex offenders and prostitutes when I started and my prices were really low and I had no house rules. Most listings are extremely vague so you can only HOPE you will get what you expect while there. As a guest you’d be foolish to expect more unless clearly promised by the host. As a host, at best you’re lucky to find a guest who is honest, clean, on-time, and responsible - or you may get a guest as clueless as you are as a host, or else someone casing your joint for things to steal, grift off your extra amenities, proposition you inappropriately, who can’t communicate with you because of poor English skills, or is just a complete slob expecting you to pick up after them. It’s a great learning experience for everyone, either way, just go into it with your eyes open.

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