As a host, I read about other host's difficulties with guests destroying their expensive carpets or furnishings, antiques, family heirlooms, etc.
I have a hard time understanding why hosts rent out places with these things in them that they are devastated about when they get wrecked. While we would all certainly hope that guests will be respectful of their surroundings, the fact is that many aren't. Sometimes it's just an accident, sometimes they just live like pigs and have no respect. Sometimes they accept responsibility and make it financially right with the host, sometimes they fight the charge tooth and nail, resulting in frustrating, time-consuming and often unsatisfactorily resolved cases with airbnb.
Of course, as hosts, we want to have our rental unit look as nice as possible, but you can make a place attractive and comfortable without furnishing with expensive, irreplacable gear. If it is your own home, where you normally live, and you are renting out while out-of-town, I'd say to consider stashing the irreplacable/expensive things under lock and key and buy some "guest" stuff. Or don't host.
Please note- I am not talking about not expecting guests to pay for damages beyond normal wear and tear- they definitely should. But I just can't understand hosts being so trusting of strangers as to leave their own really valued stuff around.
Sarah, you are so correct and that is the dilemma that the 'sharing' model faces. Hotels have it down to a science, hard to trash those places with such generic spartan furnishings and with such controls; conversely. private homes, oftentimes filled with nicer and delicate things, are at the mercy of the behavior of total strangers. Risky reality.
I agree that the property should be Rental focussed, to be fair the majority of issues I see on here relate to regular every day items that have been damaged or stolen.
@Sarah I agree, I saw something one time where a guest ruined a host’s fur coat. I thought “well you’re the dummy for leaving a fur coat out where a guest could get at it”.
People look through everything!
Whatever a guest is not supposed to touch, borrow or break, lock it away.
How do you even explain that to your Mom?
”Sorry Momma but I left the urn with Daddy’s ashes in the Airbnb and these nice boys from Toronto smoked him in a hookah pipe and I can’t find the urn”.
Good Lord, beat me now.
‘You know it’s hard out here for a Host’
@Sarah There are different sorts of both hosts and guests. Originally, Airbnb was about sharing one's home, and the assumption was a guest was like a distant relative visiting the host. But I don't have to tell you the story how Airbnb has changed over the years and what is going now - more and more businesses here, more and more guests wishing to be anonymous.
I am about to start decoration plans for someone - possibly with long term rental in mind. And I know what and how I should do, and what should be avoided. It comes with experience in hosting. If a potential host is only lured by forthcoming income but cannot do the maths in hosting, sorry...
@Sarah I totally agree with you and I don't understand those hosts either. Even with cheap Ikea stuff and second hand furniture and decorations significant damage can be made if guests make a trash party so why risking even greater loss?
We equiped our apartments with that in mind and everything is easy to clean, repair or to replace .
I'm going to disagree slightly here. If I was renting out an entire property, I would also not put anything precious or fragile in there.
However, I'm hosting in my own home and it's important to me that my home is beautiful and full of things that I treasure. The way it looks is also the main attraction for the vast majority of my guests.
Okay, the more precious china and glassware is in a dresser and not for guest use, but there are plenty of fragile things and stuff that is important to me out on display. I have never had guests damage any of it.
The things guests tend to damage are towels, bedlinen, door handles and locks and, once, a ceiling from showering with the cubicle door open. These things would happen regardless of how cheaply or expensively the place was furnished.
Some leave tea and coffee marks on top of furniture. This is more of a problem because my furniture is not IKEA but vintage. I now provide plenty of coasters and ask them to use them. Weirdly, although it is super rare for my guests to take anything, coasters do seem to disappear!
@Huma Accidents may happen even in your home, while you are not home or sleeping. Yet, less likely then in whole units where hosts are not present. There was another post from few days ago where a guy get drunk and throwed up on the expensive carpet in his host's home then tried to clean it with a bleach and ruined it totally. It seems that carpet was very expensive one so both, the guest and the host were terrified.
But at the end.... it all depends of how much money each rental can earn. There is no expensive furniture in a motel, just in expensive hotels.
@Branka & Silviamaybe I have been lucky with my guests so far. Your story reminds me more of the sort of thing that would happen in my home when it was full of housemates and their friends, with their friends being the ones causing drunken damage (they were not the ones who had paid a deposit, after all).
One time, a drunk guy was sleeping on the white sofa. He threw up on it, turned the cushions over and then went back to sleep! I found my housemate frantically trying to clean it the next morning. His friend did pay for professional cleaning, but in the end the sofa had to be replaced. Needless to say I don't have a white one now! I've also had people literally pouring their drinks over my upholstery because they think it's funny, smashing chandeliers etc. etc.
None of my guests have ever behaved in this way. Of course, accidents do happen, but my guests aren't partying here, nor are they coming back wasted. Not so far, anyway!
@Huma yes you were lucky :)
We are off site hosts and we were lucky to,.... our guests broke just one wall mirror, few plates, glasses, the vase , ruined a pair of curtains, many bath towels, burned few pots and a toaster, scratched 4 chairs, some spoons and knives are missing ... all in 18 months of hosting. Now imagine if those items were purchased in sets, unique, branded and expensive ? Luckly for our guests and for us it was all cheap and replaceble Ikea stuff :)
@Branka & SilviaI totally agree, if I was an off site host, I would do things differently. I did very briefly have a whole flat on Airbnb and I made sure anything I bought for it after that (bedlinen, towels, crockery) was IKEA and I mean the most basic ranges. That was lucky because, even though my guests were nice enough, the bedlinen had to be thrown away after! A few ££s lost, but those guests rented the whole place for a month, so it was more than worth it.
I guess it's a different scenario when it's your own house. Not only can you keep an eye on things, but the guests are just more respectful. In well over 100 stays, I've only had two sets of guests that caused damage that was even remotely expensive, and we're not talking about the kind of thing that makes the news!
What upset me about the recent guests who flooded the bathroom wasn't the damage that they caused, but that they were so unpleasant when I mentioned it. No matter what you do, you are always going to get the occasional nightmare guest.