Better host protection after guests breaking house rule SMOKING

Status changed to: Planned

I'm not talking about one or two cigarettes, but of the guests leaving the place reeking of smoke.

Too many posts in CC are about this and the extra work they had getting the stink out before new guests.

Airbnb does not have hosts' backs by not taking a portion out of the security deposit. 

Why? Smoking in a non smoking hotel room is punished by a hefty fine. Why do hosts get the  slap on the wrist?!  

 

There needs to be a better solution for this.

 



Response from Airbnb

Thank you for elaborating on the issues hosts face when dealing with smoke damage. We are just getting started on an initiative to identify how we can better support hosts that file claims for damage or for an inability to host that is not covered by the extenuating circumstance. There will be particular focus given to the claims process for damage that cannot be documented easily, like cigarette smells.

Comments
Melanie58 in
Boise, ID
Level 10

I totally agree - just from the perspective of rental management, the smoke smell is so much work to truly get rid of, especially in locations that are prone to heat or humidity.  You may think the smell is gone only to have it reemerge after a hot day or after the place is locked up for a while.  To truly get rid of the smell one has to remove all furnishings and have those professionally cleaned (couches.  throw pillows.  curtains.  anything).  All carpets need to be cleaned at a minimum but often removed, and then for best results you need to wash all of the walls and/or repaint plus run an ozone machine.  That could easily burn into a whole season of profit for a smoker's one week stay.  

Allison2 in
Traverse City, MI
Level 10

I agree. I've seen too many hosts burned because Airbnb is timid in allowing us to penalize this behavior.

 

It must be a difficult balancing act, because smoke damage is one of those things that can't be photographed & could be taken advantage of by less honest hosts.

 

At least, I'd appreciate a clear policy on what we need to do to demonstrate smoke smell. I'd be happy to install a nicotine/pot sensitive sensor if such a thing exists, or would call a cleaning service immediately if they'd like a 3rd party nose to verify cigarette stench.

Sunday0 in
Los Angeles, CA
Level 1

 

The fact that it's your property, and you don't control your own damage deposit is ridiculious.

Having to prove that the guest damaged, or disrespected your property in any way, is like pulling teeth. They want evidence, and even if you send them commuication by text from your property manager, or cleaning person who is trainned by you it's not admisable. I hate having employees making these dicisions. Most of which probably don't own their own homes. They are basically saying that reputable hosts are lying through their teeth to get extra $'s, and the guest is always right.

The truth is that hosts like repeat business from respectful guests, and we make our money through rent, not lying about damage.

 

 

Melanie58 in
Boise, ID
Level 10

I'm just curious - would the evidence of cigaratte butts be enough?  So many times on here I read stories about people who used plants as ashtrays or whatever.  At any rate, there is definitely evidence of the cigarette being smoked.  At that point, couldn't they just assess a flat fee?  And publicize that?  

Helga0 in
Paris, France
Level 10

Smoke is a big problem, mostly because smokers are really stupid about it and believe opening the windows a bit will get rid of weeks of chainsmoking. After 2 students, it took me half a year, with every shred of tissue including carpets washed in the first days, walls mostly repainted or washed with bleach. 

There should be a fine - when 

Helen56 in
San Diego, CA
Level 10

I specify no smoking in my place. I've only had one smoker stay so far -  a lovely Russian lady.  She always went outside to smoke, but the smell still lingered a couple of days after she left because it was on her clothes.

Smoking in the room would be very difficult to remove! Yes, it should incur the entire security deposit.

Helga0 in
Paris, France
Level 10

8 years ago, I rode a French train delayed by forest fires. Some smokers defied the rule: next stop, 4 heavily armed police boarded the car, who seconded the staff to control tickets, papers and handed out huge fines. 

I suppose you'd get arrested smoking on a plane nowadays. 

Ina hotel, they will

charge you. 

But in an airbnb apartment it has no consequence at all for the smoker. That seems very out of time, like back to the 70es. 

Bob-and-Kim0 in
Hillsboro, OR
Level 2

Boy do I agree with all of this, and go one further!  We live in a farmhouse, surrounded by wheat fields and/or hay on 4 sides.  Right now, the wheat has been cut, and the stubble remains.  ONE cigarette butt thrown out of a window, or flicked into the grass around my home, could not only burn my house down, but those of my adjacent neighbors as well.  This is a HUGE issue, and a slap on the wrist is simply not acceptible.  If I catch a guest violating this rule, they are IMMEDIATELY asked to leave, no exceptions!  The smoke smell is a huge issue, but safety is another thing entirely!  I'm not even sure if our insurance company would cover it (AirBnB guests) so who would I be forced to pursue?  Do the math.  You do NOONE any favors by imploying a 'slap on the wrist' consequence to this behavior!

Merrill0 in
Oakland, CA
Level 3

How can I prove that a guest has ruined my room by smoking?

Bob-and-Kim0 in
Hillsboro, OR
Level 2

anyone go in the room before the guest arrived who could vouch that it didn't smell like smoke before they arrived?

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