Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Kasavanahalli, India
Level 7
905 Views

Since the COVID pandemic with all it's travel restrictions, all the out-of-town guests from the last several months had to cancel. These were guests that had booked from six months to a year in advance for a place to stay for a wedding or some other similar benign event. After the calendar opened up, local guests booked, one after the next under false pretenses.

 

Stating they were coming for a small staycation or little party but really booked to have a large party. Since these guests were local, friends of friends came and quickly got out of hand. My property is an urban townhome with neighbors very close by. The guests were utterly disrespectful of noise levels outside well into the night, even up until 4 am. Smoking cannabis in and out of the house. Breaking bongs and shattering glass right outside the hot tub where other guests were bathing in bare feet. One guest even planned to have 6 strippers, several bartenders, a DJ, and advertized it all on social media. Mind you, this all not only violated house rules of a 10 person limit but also the state of Ohio regulations at the time of limiting gatherings to no more than 10 people.

 

Yes, I called the police several times. Yes, I had to kick out the unruly guests over the 10 person limit. Yes, I had to go full "Judge Judy" on them but since they had a "get out of jail free card" [Let the reader use discernment] They knew they could freely flaunt any rules without consequence.  Not only that, the newly nearly universal normalization of this type of behavior and demand that hosts accept this as the new normal, lest we are seen as intolerant, is squeezing me out. Just recently, Airbnb did a virtual tour of my home since, as they said, "I am a very successful host" and would like to include me in their new "verified listing" program. The focus needs to come off the hosts and be directed toward the "guests".

 

There needs to be a "verified guest" program. Every guest from March 15 up until just recently has lied to me. Misrepresented their intended purpose for booking and has been disrespectful in the extreme. The pressure to overlook the egregious behavior of certain groups of people is untenable and intolerable. My only recourse so far is to block the ability to book my listing for a full three months in advance. This has naturally cut deeply into my booking rate and may not allow me to cover the overhead of the townhouse. I see no other option other than blocking every date until every guest that is already booked has left then sell the property. That is, unless sanity returns.

8 Replies

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
London, United Kingdom
Level 10

@Paul1105 

 

I am so sorry this happened to you and it's not okay at all. I don't have those problems as I am a live in host so don't normally attract party throwers, so I had no idea of the extent of this problem in certain areas.

 

Have you considered changing the kind of guest you accept? For example, do you have Instant Book? Would you consider taking long-term guests for the time being, i.e. those who are there for work/study? You would of course need to check the local laws to ensure your maximum stay does not result in them having tenancy rights.

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
London, United Kingdom
Level 10

@Paul1105 If you are going to go down the long term route and Airbnb or other platforms is not your desired route you can also lease your place traditionally, with a lease contract and actual deposit etc. 

 

I am so sorry you are going through such a hard time but this is not a normal state for hosting. Regardless of whichever route you go down, good luck to you! 

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Chicago, IL
Level 10

@Paul1105 my experience exactly to the very last word. Interesting that it is happening in multiple cities. Not sure if it makes me feel better or worse

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Kasavanahalli, India
Level 7

@Inna22  I did file a complaint with Airbnb and since they sided with the guests that broke every rule and were a truly obnoxious bunch. That and the fact that my ever so gentle native Thai husband asked them to politely keep their voices down while outside at 4am and they threatened him with physical assault. After he spends countless hours to make a special experience for each guest  (and if you know a native Thai person, you know their culture is one of extreme non-confrontation) We have over 500 reviews and excellent standards yet Airbnb did not have our back in the least.  I'm leaving Airbnb because of their non-action to help their hosts. More fearful of offending thugs, I am completely disillusioned and just recieved their decision of inaction tonight. 

 

I'm leaving Airbnb altogether. They talk about a community of trust. It was that way once. 

 

I have a feeling most hosts that really care will gradually leave under this new radicalized environment. Airbnb is and will continue to become just a broker for large property holders that don't really care to create great guest experiences. They'll lose their defining characteristics and become another Travelocity or Expedia.  

 

I have already unlisted my properties and will fill the remaining reservations then use Zillow to find a longer term tenant. 

 

I do appreciate all that Airbnb has done for me and the wonderful people I've met along the way. I'll never forget the good. It's just not the same as it formerly was.

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Chicago, IL
Level 10

@Paul1105 same here. Closed two properties, rented two long term, in the process of figuring out what to do with remaining two

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Catskill, NY
Level 10

We are in the same situation. 

It is frustrating and unfair to be treated so badly by AirBnB. I’m sorry this happened to you. We too are leaving because of the same reasons.

 

I’m not clear we’re the airbnb loyalty is but it’s not with us for sure.

 

best of luck.

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Kasavanahalli, India
Level 7

@Yadira22Thank you for the encouragement.  Yes, I have now left Airbnb save fulfilling the few remaining reservations. I have the account but the properties are unlisted. My husband has a degree in hotel management and worked at the Four Seasons on Sumui island before emigrating to the States. He managed everything except corresponding with guests. The listings were truly spectacular. I started as a host four years ago not for the money but to give him autonomy and financial independence.  I run two successful art galleries. The listings were every bit as luxurious as the Four Seasons resorts from the Temperpedic [brand] beds to the Egyptian cotton sheets. Full time concierge,  and countless other amenities. It doesnt hurt me to stop. I am disappointed, however, as I liked the idea of Airbnb. 

 

However, like most organizations in this time of insanity, they now bow to the pressure to appease thugs rather than consider the hosts that worked hard to make them what they are (or were). 

 

Goodbye all.

Re: Since March 15, 2020, hosting has become nearly untenable. Looking for options and solutions.

in
Kasavanahalli, India
Level 7

@Huma0 

Thank you for your kind words. Yes I am going to long term rental, but not through Airbnb. They have lost my trust.  

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