We don't book parties or events on Airbnb. We do so through other means. Our cottage is listed for four adult guests (we make exceptions for 5 people if there are kids.) But that's all.
So we had a booking for a "girls weekend" for four adults. We got a call from our cleaners that it was a mess so we went to inspect. Liquor and beer bottles overflowing recycling and left in the fridge. Counters and main area sticky and cup rings on furniture.Bath overflowed in the bathroom and floors still damp at 2pm when the group had checked out at 9:45. It was clearly epic.
After pulling out our industrial fan to dry the floors and helping scrub down the place I am still wondering "was this a party?' Four guests arrived as booked per the outdoor cam. But whatever they did they clearly had a raucous 48 hours.
How do you define a "party" at your space? What would you do if you suspected a party had happened due to the aftermath of cleanup?
Do you have CCTV? @Laura2592 If so did they bring in extra guests?
To me a party would be 6 plus but obviously if you have a house that suits 10, 20 etc that would be the lmit.
Do you gave clear check out rules about how you want the place left, if they didnt comply put in a claim for extra cleaning and mark them do to 2 or 3 for cleanliness and communication.
@Helen3 yes we have a doorbell cam that shows the front of the house/drive where parking takes place as well as who is entering. There were four women as booked. We have hosted girls weekends before and cleanup had never been this intensive.
We do give clear check out rules and they followed them. But our check out rules are for the typical guest...strip beds, put sheets and towels in the hamper, put dishes in the dishwasher. We don't expect our guests to do a deep clean and technically they did what we asked.
@Helen0I don't think we are so worried about the extra cleaning. We ended up doing it ourselves as the cleaners couldn't wait for the floor to dry in the bath and could not complete the clean until it was. We normally go in behind the cleaners anyway and occasionally have to step in and re-do or complete something for all kinds of reasons. I was more concerned with how to make it clear that such bacchanals aren't something we want to book, but my husband said "four people is not a party, officially. They were just having a good time." So I was wondering if I was being unreasonable and they WERE just having a good time, or if other hosts would consider this a party. (FWIW my husband prefers messy guests to picky guests as "messy is correctable.")
A party is hard to define because it's not limited to a specific amount of people. Maybe in your house rules you can add that you recycle and require all bottles to be thrown away (provide designated bins or containers, extra garbage bags, paper towels), place coasters all around surfaces in your space to encourage guests to use them, and leaving extra 'old' towels to be used for large spills could also help.
In your listing I think it is fair to ask guests to throw trash in containers provided. I completely understand how you feel; you put a lot of time and effort into a creating a comfortable space and it's not wrong to expect a bit of consideration in return.
@Laura2592 These were just very inconsiderate guests. I don't think it really has anything to do with the definition of "party". 4 people could book a place and have what they would refer to as a "dinner party" and it would all be reasonable- an evening of food, some wine, some soft jazz, lively conversation and no mess.
These were just people with a "party girl" mentality and zero respect. I would def slam them in the review.
One of my daughters had a boyfriend in high school who was basically a "party" of one. He was hyperactive, loud, and paid no attention to his surroundings. He managed to break a beautiful vase my other daughter had given me as a birthday gift, among other things.
Hi Laura, what an interesting situation and can I say, I've been both sides of this one (as a guest and a host). Some guests use the space "lightly" and others, well, "really" use it. I think if there was actual damage, I would, as a host, do something about it. And as a guest, I would volunteer to repair. If it is a case of the space simply having been "heavily" used, I would suck it up and do the extra cleaning. I admit I've been one of a group of girls who have left drink rings, and overflowing recycle bins, used all the towels etc (nothing was damaged but we "really" used the place). As a host, I've had both sets of guests too. As hosts I think we have to accept that we are going to get guests who "really" use the space and while no damage is done, it's a pain in the *** to clean and reset. Swings and roundabouts I guess, because I've had some super easy cleans and resets too!
@Laura2592 I struggle with the same definition for a slightly different reason. I actually do allow the type of a gathering you experienced. As long is they don’t disturb neighbors or break anything, I am OK with a massive cleanup. So while I do not allow parties – meaning invited guests beyond the registered group, I do allow the registered guest to celebrate. So in your case, I would say that you do not Allow celebrations. Another thing I do is offer them to purchase additional cleaning for an extra fee. Good number of guests takes me up on it and it allows me to plan for what you’ve witnessed when these guest left. Actually get two cleaning crews with these funds. I know most on this forum will frown upon what I have written. But it has worked well for me I have rarely had anything broken or any disturbances. Definitely not at a higher rate than a family with kids. They are definitely capable of destroying far more and making a lot more noise :-) Short of barring alcohol at your property, I think there’s very little you can do to stop this. And hopefully this is one in the million since you only allow four guests. My groups are usually a little bigger.
@Inna22 As far as "most on this forum will frown upon what I have written", I don't. I think this is what is good about Airbnb- that there are so many types of listings for so many different needs. There's nothing inherently wrong with allowing parties or expecting that that will result in a big clean-up chore. As long as the host is prepared for that, charges enough to cover the clean-up without ending up feeling they've been disrespected, is attentive to what is going on, is good at dealing with unacceptable situations that come up, and isn't the type of host who only cares about making money and not about respect for the neighbors (we've all read about those hosts who run party houses and totally ignore the neighbors' distress with the constant disturbance) there's definitely a need and a place for your type of listings.
@Inna22 My definition of the party is that extra visitors are invited by the registered guests who book the listing. And they have a gathering with dinner served and lasted for a few hours (4-5 hours) at least. There are three essential criteria
(1) Extra visitors in addition to registered guests
(2) Dinner is served for all
(3) Gathering lasts at least 4 hours.
Noise, mess, damage, etc are just the by products. They are not necessary from the party only. Well organized party can avoid those as well even though it is hard to do.