What would you do?
There appears to be an undisclosed security video camera in the living room / bedroom area of my current Airbnb-- hard to be sure is active or no, but integrated with the house security camera.
I am likely to cover with tape, to start.
@Kenneth12 I would contact the host and tell him about the importance of disclosure of security cameras. Some hosts may not be aware of the rule to disclose security camera.
About two months ago, I stayed in one Airbnb host’s place. There was a security camera inside the house pointing to the front door entrance. I saw that there was no disclosure in the listing and told host. The host did not know that it has to be disclosed.
You are a regular Host, have you met the Host?
I'd be inclined not to be over reactive & politely send them a msg and ask if it's currently connected.
Many people have security cameras in their homes these days as we all know.
Be professional and express ask if it may or may not have been an oversight to disclose.
Whilst there's those who install & operate security camera's most people probably wouldn't bother with what Guests are up to.
Enjoy your break from Hosting.
Tape over it.
Is the host an experienced one - should they know better? Different actions dependant on the answer.
Various good comments from all of you, which is what I try to solicit with a WWYD. (Hey-- I spend about a quarter time in ABBs folks!).
Inexperienced host. Kept me waiting 2 hours past listed check-in, with a small but obvious lie. Then ran off to vacation leaving a housekeeper as "caretaker" and not replying / reading messages himself; both only speak local languages which is perfectly fine as I do too but ABB can be difficult to negotiate for those outside English and I give a lot of slack for that; OTOH the washing machine does not work (and hey, is in the middle of a wet bathroom-- you can bet I unplugged that 240V plug before showering!) and there are a variety of other issues such as no soap/shampoo-- host obviously left in a bit of a hurry, probably booked the ticket with the revenue :) -- biggest problem other than the cameras is absentee host.
Once the sun was up: clearly they are motion-detector cameras wired to the house security system with large lenses in the center.
WWYD "what would you do?" is the point-- yes they're a bit creepy, but probably / most likely unintentional-- black electrical tape from my pack over the lenses, once the day was over, a note to the host explaining ABB's rules, that they need to go before another guest, and addressing the broken washing machine and other problems.
We'll see; so far, only the housekeeper seems to reply.
So What Would the rest of You seeing this Do? WWYD?
@Kenneth12 I wonder why you booked this listing when there are so many issues. If there are any reviews left by previous guests, you would have noticed if that is the listing you like to book.
If the host is new or you were cheated some way to book it, definitely you will need to leave a honest review to warn other guests. Hopefully you did not book long. Otherwise, you may need to call Airbnb and cancel it to get relocated.
@Alice595 : I've noticed that when you book with less than 5% inventory left in an area, issues tend to occur.
I got the sense he was trying hard; thin file for reviews, his listing intimates that he's using other platforms / is more experienced but that doesn't look to be true; and FWIW he also set the address to another property so when I googled I saw another, somewhat more attractive house-- I was giving benefit of the doubt on that one, but am no longer so sure it was incidental / a mistake.
My sense are that these are unintentional errors of a new host, but maybe they are not. I generally think reviews of new hosts should be kind and forgiving, but fair.
Otherwise, it's a few more days; the property has a broken washing machine; I can buy soap and shampoo; there are other problems but manageable; I'm disinclined to report the cameras to ABB unless I get an indication that they were intentional malfeasance or that the host will not remove / doesn't actually care.
Host will get an earful privately about being a host, as well, if I have the time.
@Kenneth12 "host obviously left in a bit of a hurry," are you sure the host is the host and not just someone renting out someone else's place illegally unbeknownst to the owner? It has happened on Airbnb.
As @Kelly149 wrote below, it is indeed a bit of a soap opera at this point!
"Host" is a renter-- cameras are installed by landlord -- he did get back to me with an explanation that included that.
As for the other city I mention: evidently some guys have rented 30+ apartments and put them all on Airbnb ...
@Kenneth12 As I'm sure you're aware, there are many places where thievery is rampant. Here in Sayulita, many hosts who rent out entire places or even some with private rooms, have extensive security systems, cameras, motion detector lights, etc. It has nothing to do with spying on the guests, but to detect thieves getting in. There is many a tourist here who arrives, checks in, relaxes for awhile, has a few beers, showers, dresses and goes out to dinner, sometimes even neglecting to properly lock doors and windows,- they're in "I'm in paradise, I checked my brain at the door" mode. Then they come home to find the place has been broken into (even if locked) their money, camera, etc, gone. The thieves are clever and watch the homes and see when a taxi arrives and drops people off with luggage. Then they bide their time.
Pretty clueless host for sure who thinks he can just run his business in a lackadaisical way and collect the money, and likely didn't realize he had to disclose the camera. I'd just leave an honest review, and send the host some strong private feedback about his hosting style, letting him know you considered reporting the undisclosed cameras to Airbnb, which would get his listing shut down, but that you preferred to give him the opportunity to correct his listing. Then maybe check back in a few weeks to see if he has actually added this info, if not, flag and report.
@Kenneth12 Interesting that when you googled the address, the photos were of another house. Could be intentional, maybe just some glitch, or he doesn't want guests to know exact address until they arrive. But I can tell you that where I live, the house addresses are wonky- Mexicans in areas like this simply make up their own address to a large extent. When I needed a propane delivery one day and the delivery guy wasn't answering the phone, I had to call their office. The receptionist asked for my address, and even though I told her he knows it as "Sarah's house below Rancho Arado" she insisted. He didn't show up and when I finally reached him a couple days later and asked why he hadn't come, he said he looked for the address, ended up at another house with the same number as mine who said they hadn't ordered propane. So it's hard to know if maybe something like that was in play.
Ask if the Host checks property between guests, or if it's been reported that the washing machine isn't working. They may or may not know.
It all depends which Building Act and Electrical Acts are in place for a property if they are required to have Washing machine or other appliances directly installed into the socket.
In NZ they now tend to be plug into the wall including in Bathrooms.
Whilst annoying WM is not working it's probably quite lawful to be in the Bathroom as it is.