Hello! My classmates and I are enrolled in a doctoral program, and we are in town for a lab and study weekend. No parties, celebrations, fun time, etc. We were charged over $250 in fees for the rental, and almost $200 were in cleaning fees. The night before leaving, the host sends me a list of chores to do.... even though she initially charged the big cleaning fee. We are up late studying and have class the morning of check out, so we will be out of the apartment around 7:45 am even though checkout is not until 10:00 am. Is is not appropriate to ask us to do all the chores when there is a large cleaning fee, and it is not our responsibility to have the place in order for the next PAYING guests. Can the host charge me after the fact if we don't clean it? If we do find the time to clean it, can I request my $180 cleaning fee be reimbursed? Any insight would be appreciated! Thank you!
@Katie1148 It is your responsibility to clean up after yourselves, washing the dishes you used seems totally reasonable to me. We don't ask guests to strip the beds, but that would literally take about 2 minutes for each bed. I wouldn't ever ask guests to start laundry, especially if I was charging a large cleaning fee, so this one feels inappropriate, but that is still 2 out of 3 items that are reasonable and very fast to handle. The cleaning fee covers the cost of actually cleaning the property...vacuum, dust, polish furniture, clean kitchen and bathroom surfaces, restage, refill items, sanitize...so it isn't as if you washing your own dishes, stripping the beds and washing towels means that there won't be hours of cleaning still to come.
@Katie1148 While I understand the principle, I really do, there is no reason to be offended by this list. It may look long and daunting but the host is literally asking you to push a few buttons. Shouldn't your dishes already be in the dishwasher? So push the start button before you leave. Unless the washing machine is two flights of stairs and building over, it is simple to throw 4 towels in there and push the start button. As far as stripping the bed, when you get up in the morning untuck the four corners of the flat sheet and push the sheets in the middle of the bed (so "the housekeeper will know what needs to be laundered.") Doing this favor for the cleaning staff to help start the process can not take anymore time than writing this blog post. Just my opinion - I have a soft spot for housekeeping, they are too underappreicated.
Do I understand this correctly?
You paid $250, of which "nearly" $200 was in cleaning fees ($180?)? So, you paid $50 ($70) for several persons, for at least one night, maybe more?
There is a hostel just down the road from us that offers rooms for 48€ (~$55) per person per night. There's no kitchen, no dishwasher, no wash machine, and you have to share the bathrooms with other guests at the hostel.
If I understand it correctly, it appears you've just received the deal of the century. **
**[Personal remarks removed in line with - Community Center Guidelines]
I appreciate that guests and Hosts see things from different perspectives, but I've noticed that this thread has got quite a few replies that go against our Community Center Guidelines.
I'd like to ask you to please remain respectful towards other members, even when in disagreement.
As you know, personal remarks are never tolerated in the CC, so let's please be mindful of that when interacting with other users.
We can all benefit from a safe space where we feel welcome to share our thoughts and have constructive conversations, so let's please each do our part to make sure the Community remains positive and respectful.
@Katie1148 It should have been made clear to you when you booked what the owner expects you to do before leaving.
1. I do not ask guests to strip the beds. Housekeeping needs to see if laundry treatment is needed, and rummaging through rolled up linens is annoying. My housekeeper has a complete change-out set of linens, so what is not washed and dried during cleaning can be taken off site.
2. I do ask guests to put all used towels in the shower/tub. No wet towels on the floor please. Again, towels are checked for treatment before being washed. Because housekeeping washes towels with a particular detergent sanitizer mix and at a certain temperature, I do not want guests to start a load of towels. Housekeeping also has a complete replacement set if towels need to be taken off-site.
3. Guests should collect and wash all of the dishes, utensils, pots and pans that were used during their stay. Putting a load in the dishwasher and getting it started is not to much to ask. My housekeeper is not your mother. However, some guests do not know how to use the dishwasher properly, so even after a cycle has run, my housekeeper will inspect and may have to rewash dishes before putting them away.
I would like to see guests give due consideration to the efforts of housekeepers, and think about how they would feel if they were the housekeeper who had to come along behind a group of persons who left food, glasses and dishes all over, pots and pans piled in the sink, stains on bedding and towels that were used to wash the dog. IMO, guests should leave a property the way that they would leave their grandmother's house. My grandmother would have come after me with a stick if I disrespected her home. (I don't say their mother's house, because some young persons still think that mom is going to clean up after them as if they were infants...)
Likewise, hosts need to adjust their expectations of guests who are there to relax and vacation; especially if a hefty cleaning fee is charged. If you are not allowing enough time between guests for your housekeeper to get the job done when guests are disrespectful or overly messy, rethink your need for "heads in beds". Hotels can take a room out of service when necessary, hosts cannot.
@Lorna170 I thought I would mention that I put my check-out instructions at the end of my check-in instructions, which folks get a couple of days ahead of arrival.
Only about 80% of folks actually follow my check-out instructions, even if they only stayed a couple of days.
I'm sure the majority of hosts that send check-out instructions the night before check-out do it because, otherwise, nobody would remember.