I am in a dilemma as to whether to leave a bad review for recent guests. I do want to be honest so future hosts are aware but I also don’t want to discourage future guests if they see this review and think I am being overly picky. There is the potential these guests may return and recommend to their friends. I would accept these guests again as long as I could ensure the house rules were followed next time.
We are new to Airbnb hosting and I realize when we charge a cleaning fee, which is only $15 that we can expect a certain amount of “normal” cleaning to do.
Ms Xx booked our place for her husband and son. Ms Xx and her husband communicated well prior to and during stay. House rules were not observed. It was the husband and son staying so possibly Ms Xx didn’t communicate to her husband the house rules I have on my listing. Ms Xx is also a host herself which made me think she would have made sure they were aware.
After check out we found muddy footprints through out the living room and bedroom’s newly renovated laminate wood floors but looked like they had swept up the majority of the mud. But my house rules ask to remove outdoor footwear while indoors. It wasn’t too difficult to clean as we had to wash floors anyway.
There was a large scuff mark on the bedroom door possibly a suitcase? It definitely was not there prior.
A/C was left on after check out. I have made note to turnoff when exiting apartment in the house rules and also mentioned in a note I left the guests with a complimentary fruit/muffin basket.
The toilet was left quite dirty as well, I won’t go into details and would not mention this in the actual review.
The other areas of the apartment were left clean, dishes were done and put away.
Any suggestions on how to proceed? It wasn’t terrible to clean and I am going to post the house rules so they can be seen on entry to the apartment. I can say in all honesty that my husband still doesn’t always remove his work boots before coming into our place and that’s after 35 years, lol!
@Alison564 we have had a few guests like that. To be honest, the things you mentioned are mostly minor issues. I would write a fairly neutral review, maybe focus on the things they did right, and then subtract a few stars in the cleanliness and house rule categories. If you wanted to, you could also mention in your review that "extra cleaning was required".
@Alison564 Mrs. XX booked for her husband and son and was not present herself- that's a 3rd party booking, which is against Airbnb TOS, which, if Mrs. XX is a host herself, she is well aware of (unless sh's a newbie host, in which case she may not be).
Best not to accept 3rd party bookings in the future- you will not be supported by Airbnb for guests who were booked under someone else's account. If a guest tries to do this, just inform them that 3rd party bookings contravene Airbnb's TOS and your insurance will be invalid for them. Ask them to get the person they are booking for to set up an account in their own name and book themselves.
@Alison564, as I understand it was third party booking? The one who booked did not stay? That goes against the policies of Airbnb and create problems. Your guests simply did not read house rules.
You can mention in your review that the rules were not respected and you had to clean more, than usual. But I suggest to try to avoid third party bookings. It is not covered by Airbnb in case something happens.
@Alison564 Yes as others have said, the fact that this was a 3rd party booking, against Airbnb policy, really complicates the review process. Whatever review you write will only appear on the profile of a person who was not present, and who had no control over the ones who were. So nothing you can say would be a fair indication of how Mrs xx would conduct herself in another property.
If you voluntarily choose to accept a third-party booking, you should be aware that the people who show up at your place have probably never seen your listing. Of course nobody sits their family down and reads out the House Rules, any more than you read all the fine print every time you download an app. So if there are particular things you expect of guests - such as what to do with their shoes when they come into the house - it's generally up to you to communicate that to them.
A fair review might mention that you wish Mr XX had shown the courtesy to remove his footwear rather than muddy your floors. But of course he will read whatever review you post, and he won't be happy if you say anything negative. So you have to decide for yourself whether you'd like to court the future business of him and his acquaintances, or to write an honest review of your experience. I personally don't know why you'd want to host people like this again, but I live in a place where the norm is to take your shoes off when you enter a home.
Thank you all for the feedback, I will have to read up more on Airbnb’s policies as I did not realize 3rd party bookings are not allowed. In knowing this now I can see the reasons why. I am a newbie at this and learning. The guest also didn’t indicate on her initial reservation that it was not herself who required the unit, it showed 1 guest but during messaging she said “we” so I asked her how many guests. It wasn’t until 3 days before check in and 7 days after I asked her to confirm the # of guests that she answered that it would be her husband and son.
I will probably soften the review and try not to be too negative, and if I post the house rules where they are visible it may help. I don’t really want to host people like this but we live in a small community and I feel a negative review on my part may discourage future guests.
Where we live it is also the norm to remove outdoor footwear.
Every time I have a reservation, at the same time as the reservation, I welcome you and then strictly inform you of the type of cancellation I have. As a courtesy measure, I grant you 30 minutes to modify any error or make a full refund of the amount if it is an express reservation. Now to what we are going. On the same day of the reservation I send all the rules of the house, very few people usually read them, sometimes, I find myself in uncomfortable situations, to avoid having to get someone's attention or having to repeat everything I do to each guest . It is important to note that I am quite specific in the behaviors of people during their stay.
I have found in some cases of scorned guests, that for not complying with the rules and I had to get their attention they qualified me low. I have no problems, my guests generally give me very good scores, but I'm not a policeman, I don't have to keep an eye on the guests. Most of the time I am away from home working. In my case I have 99% of good experiences, but important. I always put everything, without exceptions, so far I have been very generous putting almost all scores of 5, error. Do not fall for that, try to be fair, they will not have mercy and will be very critical, do not forget that they will pay for your stay, it is normal. That's why me too.
Do not worry, Allison, I am sure that next time you will be much better and you will find a way to avoid problems.
after 3 y. of hosting I admit I don't care about:
footprints on the laminate floor ( if they didn't stain the carpet), muddy bathroom floor, suitcase marks on the doors and walls (if they are not scratched, unwashed dishes etc...
Of course, I love clean and neat guests and they save my time but I am happy if nothing was damaged or broken and all the stains they left can be washed.
The real problems are when guests leave the front door wide open (building in the city center), when they break the furniture, don't return keys, clog the toilet, leave the heating on 30C and build moist, etc...
I would write something like "they were good guests but third party booking" and give them 4* for cleanliness and forget about them.
@Branka-and-Silvia0 Thanks for your feedback and I agree. It was no real extra time to wash the muddy footprints as was washing the floor anyway. The scuff on door is part of the normal wear and tear and I’m sure we will see more. Leaving the AC on was an oversight on their part and if I post house rules inside the apartment maybe future guest will be more observant.
Nothing was broken, they neatly put the two top pillows from bed in closet to keep clean as weren't using, dishes were done and put away. So there were positives as well.
I guess I will soon learn what to get ruffled about and what to just accept as a host.
@Alison564 You've gotten great advice from some of the best hosts here.
I just want to add that I keep my house rules short and incorporate most of my wishes in the house MANUAL. For instance: "Shoes off when possible," "Don't turn the thermostats off," and the like are in the house manual, not the house rules. Why? Because people don't like too many rules and don't read them, but they DO read the house manual, because it includes the things they want to know, like where the coffee things are and how the TV works. People are self-interested.
@Ann72 Thanks for the feedback and yes I agree I am getting some valuable advice here. I will set up the house manual and I think posting a few of the main points as you enter the home is a good idea ie: remove outdoor footwear, turning off air conditioning and fans when you leave.