I had a guest who checked in on NYE. At 11p they informed me that the toilet was leaking in 1 of 3 bathrooms. The previous guest made no mention of this. I was even able to get someone to come look at it on new years day. The guest, Mandy, made no mention to me about a credit but spoke to someone at support named Aika. I told them I did not agree 330 as a refund but did agree to 100. There was no further follow up and airbnb proceeded to deduct my 330 but over 700 from my next payout, half of the entire reservation amount paid by Mandy. This is extremely upsetting and has me considering leaving airbnb for vrbo.
I feel your pain - spent several hours yesterday repairing damage that previous guests didn’t mention. I’m assuming they thought they’d be charged but I think it was accidental. If my cleaner hadn’t seen it and told me I’m sure it would have been an issue with the next guest.
Airbnb is a business loyal to guests not hosts. I get it but.... I investigated VRBO and it seems to me that you are totally on your own and that they are only a booking site. What other options are you considering?
I started to sign up months ago but read the fine print and didn't feel comfortable. Even though there isn't always a lot of help with problems on Airbnb it seems VRBO is strictly a rental site and hands off. Is that accurate?
I've had good and bad with Airbnb. My very first guest broke the frame on a brand new couch (long story on why we had to buy new). I got reimbursed 100% of the cost but only because I could prove when it was delivered and that that guest was the only one to have ever even sat on it. However, we had a group we had to kick out and they would not even respond - several phone calls and I was told they would get in touch with me and never did. Our neighbors had already reported the situation to Airbnb and no one from Airbnb even contacted me. On top of stealing minor things, breaking things, etc. Airbnb wouldn't even take down their bogus review!
@Sam4108 I did not know airbnb is able to unilaterally issue a refund for something like this AND determine the amount, without including the host in the matter. Is this what happened?
Because as you say, you immediately responded to the situation and there may have been some difference in opinion about the leak , when or how it happened. Plus it affected only 1 bathroom of 3.
I would think it would be up to host's discretion about the refund amount, and airbnb would only act as an arbiter IF there is some question or difference of opinion between guest and host about the fair amount, but would not act as the final decision maker. It sounds like they did in your case?
I list on Airbnb and VRBO.
There's not that much difference in terms of the "involvement" when either guest or host involves VRBO apart from VRBO has always provided a quicker response to me than Airbnb. VRBO is also less reluctant than Airbnb to become involved in determining and issuing credit/refunds to guests in my experience, citing the contract which exists between guest and host to which VRBO is not party.
However, there are some other quirks to VRBO, such as, hosts can elect to allow multiple payments, a deposit and the balance, say, 3 months before check-in. If the guest fails to pay the balance, VRBO won't get involved and if the host cancels the reservation because the terms of the contract have been broken, then the VRBO penalty will be applied, in effect, your ranking is affected. VRBO like to use the multiple payments as a selling tool but leave the host out on a limb when it backfires. Of course, VRBO collects all of its fee with the deposit - no flies on them!
As with Airbnb, reviews aren't negotiable, I had a guest who left a glowing review but accidentally gave a 1 star rating. Despite the guest confirming to VRBO that it was an error and their intention was to give a 5 star review, VRBO refused to amend it.
So they're both a bit of a muchness, both have their quirks, and both are guest centric, however, I suspect that since the involvement of Expedia, VRBO will become more like Airbnb from a host perspective as VRBO attempts to win more of the rental business.