Suspended listing

Level 2
Lawrence, KS

Suspended listing

I had a guest last week who broke my toilet seat.  Not a massive deal, but they didn’t let me know and left me unprepared for my next guest.  I reached out for reimbursement, and after paying me that, the “guest” left me a 3 star review (I average 4.95 and have had 500+ bookings since 2017).  Airbnb has suspended my listing for five days as a result.

I agree with others who have had this happen—hosts have no power with Airbnb.  Doesn’t matter my track record or even the fact that the “guest” was clearly in the wrong here.  
I am awaiting a reply from Airbnb from my request to take down the 3-star review.  If they don’t, I am done with Airbnb.  Any advice for jumping to VRBO?  Anyone with experience having to cancel upcoming guests because you’re leaving the platform?

18 Replies 18

Hi @Jennifer2998 

So sorry this happened, but unfortunately this has become the norm. Did you try and get the 3star review removed as retaliatory? If not, post a (brief!) public comment about their negative review after the suspension is over and explain the guest left a negative review after you filed a claim for damages caused. Most future guests will see this guest for who they are and see all your other great reviews. Just state the facts and leave any emotion out of it.


The best way to avoid a retaliatory review is to never let the guest post one in the first place. This is done by delaying your Aircover claim and your own review until close to the expiration of the 14-day window. Most hosts have had to delay filing a claim this way to avoid the inevitable negative review from a guest in retaliation (be sure to document with photos, video, receipts for replacement/repair etc. and don't miss the Airbnb 30-day window for submitting proof!). Hosts also wait until the review window almost closes before posting their honest review about the  about the guest and damage. However, if the guest does post a review during the 14day window, all bets are off and you'll have to file the Aircover claim and post your review.


I would give yourself time to really consider If you want to leave Airbnb, or try to mitigate this from happening again in the future and stay on Airbnb. If you want to leave,  I would get your Vrbo listing created. Then block your Airbnb calendar for any further bookings. Be sure to link the calendars or manually block dates on both calendars to avoid double bookings. Once all the Airbnb reservations are done, you can delist on Arbnb. Trying to cancel alot of reservations on Airbnb will cost you money. If there are only one or two, only you can decide if it's worth it in order to delist right away.


Perhaps another Host can chime in here with other ideas?


All of this suspension / listing removal stuff is new in the last year. It’s basically making the host avoid any confrontation with the guest, knowing that a bad review will cost anywhere from 5 days to a month of booking. As ever Airbnb seems to have created something without any understanding of the consequences to hosts.

Thank you for your thoughtful answer. I’ve already unlisted my property, I just simply won’t stay with Airbnb if they won’t support hosts. They refused twice to take down the retaliatory review. It’s so frustrating how Airbnb does not understand who is actually making the money for them here.  I’m offended by the way they do business.

I am at the same point of leaving the Airbnb platform as well.  I've been a host since 2016, Superhost and in the beginning it was great.  People appreciated the lower cost and coming to a clean, quiet, and safe place was a plus.  In the last year, with the new rating system, I've been put on probation twice.  I used to have a house manual book, but they never opened it, so I started posting the most often asked questions in the form of notes as well as reminder to turn off the lights, fireplace, lock the door and close the windows when you leave.  I buried in my welcome note a $5 credit if they told me they'd read all the information up to this point.  I've paid out $25 to date.  That's my data that guests do not read the information listed online.  I removed my listings from instant book .  My latest battle with Airbnb was guest went to the wrong door and so their code didn't work, 3 stars for check-in, location 3 stars-I can't fix that-they picked it, overall 3 stars.  Each of those 3 stars within a stay counts now as two strikes.  The other guest complained about the dark, deary backyard -2 stars, I don't promote a scenic view, and it was a rainy weekend, too many rules 3 stars, overall 3 stars. I specifically asked Airbnb how to resolve these issues.  They continued to send me the links to how to be a 5-star host.  Every day, I responded, they had not specially answered my question. I am a retired special education teacher -inner city.  I know how to communicate and understand when my message is not being understood, so I'm constantly changing up my messages that go to guests when they book, check on guests while they are with me, and thanked them for choosing to stay with me.  Oh, another 2 stars for communication.  I have 100% response rate.  I have photos of my address, parking, where to park, and what my house looks like from the street, Airbnb sign on my garage door, light over my house number, pictures of the street signs.  It's been distressing since they have implemented the new rating system, and I'm done with Airbnb.  I've owned a salon, broker of my own real estate office, and a teacher on top of all that.  I've managed properties and tenants.  Airbnb used to offer $250 for a referral of a new host.  Now they're up to $750.  That tells me they are hurting for hosts.  I'm waiting for the notice that I'm on a suspension again.  They've asked me to become an Ambassador.  I told them no, thank you because you'd fire me after I started agreeing with hosts about the lack of background checking they really do (they said they only check the phone number and email to verify they belong to the same person) or the lack of.  I can't continue to be Airbnb's escape goat anymore. Thoughts?   

That all sounds extremely frustrating. I am surprised by Airbnb’s policies with guests’ reviews.  The review I got concerned things that I can’t change either (the trains at night?  The trash collection in the morning?  Both things that no other guest has ever complained about)— when I ask Airbnb to take down the three star review, they said that there was nothing about the review that violated their policies. I think they should have a policy where a guest is able to comment on certain things like that, but it shouldn’t be part of the review that gets rated. The ratings should only be about what the host has direct control over.  
I think overall Airbnb leaves hosts too vulnerable to disrespectful and thoughtless guests.  I am not surprised that it seems like Airbnb is hard up for hosts at the moment.
I’m so sorry for your experience. The extra income can be wonderful until it just doesn’t seem worth it!


So did they shut you down for a week or month or permanent after those reviews ? I don’t think a lot of hosts realize that what was a road bump of getting a 3* is now going to shut down your income. I lost 6 weeks bookings and gave up. Blocked calendar and switched to longer term. 

They notified me that they were suspending my account for five days. I took it up with the resolution center, and kept pushing, and they reinstated my account after two days after insisting that there’s no way they can override policy. Then I asked them to take down the retaliatory review, and they absolutely will not, saying that the review doesn’t violate any policies. So, even though my account is reinstated, that review will stand.  so they made an exception on the suspension rule, but they will not make any sort of exception for this review. I think that Airbnb needs to discern between reviews that are actually constructive, and reviews that are unfair and involve things totally out of the host’s control.

The problems start if you get another 3* or less - then It’s a month and you have to provide proof you fixed whatever problems the guests claim you have or no more listing. None of this existed a year back, you’d just learn from the review - now any issue can get you shut down.

Hi Pete28, they shut me down for a week, so no bookings could go to ANY of my Airbnbs.  My total account is suspended.  

Same here. My listings were suspended and later removed because of a flat out lie by my guests. Later my listings were reinstated because I could prove that the guests were lying (security camera footage). I lost several thousands.  I am switching to longer term too.

Level 2
Sewickley, PA

The suspended listing stuff is very frustrating. We have a few neighbors  (we live a few doors down from our Airbnbs) that reported us for petty things in an effort to get us shut down. It took FOREVER for Airbnb to resolve it, which was frustrating. We even gave them the number of our local police department and borough manager so they could talk to them directly about the supposed "complaints." We are Superhosts. We are expected to respond immediately to requests, comments, and complaints -- Airbnb should extend the same courtesy to us and resolve issues asap. Our neighbors delighted in having our listings hidden while the "case was investigated." What if they decided to lodge a complaint every week? 

Level 10
Seattle, WA

It would be interesting to understand what is the new norm for listing suspension. My first take was that it needed two or more 3* or less in a month or more period, but now it seems like you get 5 days for a single 3* review ?!?


It’s worth noting that if you get 2-3 bad reviews in some 1-3 month period you get shut down for a month / permanent  and go into an endless appeal process. All it takes is say one broken toilet seat and then the next guest to complain and down you go.


Does Airbnb outline their suspension policy anywhere ?

Yes it’s crazy and no one from Airbnb support can explain how this works nor is it documented anywhere. Like how long do those stay on your account and how many times can you get a three star review before being suspended? It seem like it was three in a three month period but now it seems it may be shorter.

Level 10
Toronto, Canada

Why would your listing get suspended after a single 3 star review after averaging 4.95 and with 500+ bookings? Something doesn't add up here.


Sorry this happened to you though.