Enough! Calling all Hosts to Class Action Lawsuit!

My tale is long, complicated, and listed below. But more to the point of this post, are you a host who has been taken advantage of by Airbnb’s host guarantee? Calling all hosts to class action. The more people who respond, the more likely we are to get results. Read on for my story.

November 14th, 2019. Guests checked in for a three-month stay, but arrived with four more people than they paid for on the booking. I contacted the guest and asked for the reservation to be corrected to the accurate amount of persons.

On November 26th, the guest still had not followed through and I could see the guests were violating my house rules (parking on the yard). I got Airbnb customer service involved. My case person saw my proof (video) and said that he would address the issue. After going back and forth with him for a few days, he started ghosting me on December 5th. This lasted until December 13th when another agent contacted me to say “Thanks for reaching out to us regarding this issue. I’ve forwarded your inquiry to a member of my team who can better assist you. They’ll be getting in touch with you soon.”

On December 14th, an entire month post check-in, I was finally able to get the guest charged for the proper amount of people. Then it all went off the rails. My guest decided to cancel the rest of their stay, claiming the house wasn’t big enough for them. Which means they had to get out, the same day, and still pay for the next month, per Airbnb’s long-term reservation cancellation policy. I was fine with this.

However, Airbnb then had a supervisor ask me to refund the guests $4000. I told them that their request was outrageous. This guest lied about the booking, then ignored requests to make it right for an entire month, all while violating house rules over and over again… there was no way I was refunding them.

The supervisor asked me to allow them to stay for the next 30 days, even though their reservation was cancelled. I explained to him, that assuming guests take good care of the home and follow the rules, I am willing to let them stay but I wanted the reservation reinstated to protect my right within Airbnb’s policies.

He said they could not reverse the cancellation and asked me to simply block my calendar for the dates, then promised my rights would be covered as if the reservation was still active in their system. I asked for him to submit this information to me in writing. He said he would have my new agent send it to me. Despite multiple requests, that never happened.

After agreeing to house these guests without an official reservation on my account, the guest proceeded to violate my house rules by parking on the grass (there is a four-car driveway), leaving tire marks in my yard. All of a sudden Airbnb was asking me “How did your guests do? Please leave them a review.” I contacted Airbnb again to tell them that I can not and should not be asked to review a guest who is still in my house. Airbnb disagreed and said there was nothing they could do about it (which is false).

Fast forward to December 24th. Airbnb closed this extremely messed up case. On December 27th, I got to the house to do the yard and check on the conditions. It was awful. There was rotten food everywhere, damage to all my furniture in the living room and kitchen, a bug infestation as a result of the food, a cabinet was broken into and all my laundry supplies were missing, part of my refrigerator was outside full of dirt, and my smoke/carbon dioxide detector was covered by a plastic bag. I had had enough.

I kicked the guests out, via Airbnb message, because they were not present. Once again, the guest did not respond to my messages. I immediately took a video of the entire house and started to reach out to Airbnb again for help. The agents kept telling me that I had to go through the resolution center, but I couldn’t because the reservation technically ended on December 14th.

Calling Airbnb just left me in the run around, so I demanded a case manger help me with my claim via Twitter. He was awesome and promised to see me through the entire thing. He would be the last person I had to explain everything to, and I could submit my evidence for a claim to him.

January 1st, 2020, I started submitting video and still photos to prove my claim. Then on the 2nd, while still submitting documentation, I got a message stating that they didn’t know what guest I was talking about and I needed to go through the resolution department. I immediately contacted them again to ask for help… they ghosted me. At my wit’s end, I Tweeted at Airbnb Help again.

On January 4th, they then sent me a Senior Claims Specialist. He promised to help me with my case and ensure we’d reach a fast resolution. I replied to his message (which was now all via email instead of Airbnb customer service messages because they closed all my open messages related to this matter). I asked him if they had received my nine videos and 90 still pictures. He did not reply until January 7th, three days later.

In that message, they informed me that the total they were willing to provide for proven damages was $1774, not the $1870 that I submitted. The reason for this is that the “consumables” (laundry supplies stolen out of locked cabinet) are not covered by the guarantee and now I have to fill out a claims form to get paid. Fine, whatever. I went to the link proved to fill out the claim form and discovered that I must first try to contact the guest and file a police report. What?

I can’t contact the guest. They were kicked off of Airbnb already and deleted from my calendar by Airbnb, as if there were never there. As for the police report, I plan on filing one tomorrow, but I already repaired the house. I mean how else would I be able to submit my claim with all of my proof, if I had not actually gotten the work done? Also I feel this is a serious misuse of a governmental agency.

I wrote Airbnb to answer these questions:

1. How do I contact a guest who has been kicked off Airbnb?

2. Am I still supposed to call the cops 11 days after the event and post repairs?

I have no idea if he will respond tomorrow, the next day, or never. My case has been opened and closed multiple times, with seven different agents, yet still on going since November 26th. I have Googled Airbnb’s host guarantee stories.

I’m not a special Superhost. I’m just one of thousand who have been through this nightmare. Many host stories are worse than mine. I keep seeing people say “class-action” but have yet to find one class-action brought by host against Airbnb.

As a result, I called Morgan and Morgan and requested they look into a class action brought by hosts against Airbnb for their fraudulent guarantees and practices. They told me the more people who call, the more likely it is to take off.

Are you a host who has been done wrong and sabotaged by Airbnb? Do you have proven damage claims that have been denied? Call Morgan and Morgan at (786) 453-8466. If we all speak up, there will be no choice but to hear us.

Posted in Airbnb Host Stories and tagged , , , , , .

29 Comments

  1. Airbnb was doing short terms booking during Coivid while it was not allowed by State law. I informed Airbnb in writing they kept short term bookings under 30 days. While other OTS’s shut down at their loss.
    Also Airbnb does not pay anything for damages. Airbnb destroy our neighborhoods by supporting scammers and troublemakers.

  2. I got a 2027 $ booking cancelled 2 days prior arrival on a strict reservation policy. The whole booking was erased from my transactions all of it. I had a pdf screen shot with the resrevation number and they put it back on my transaction history. But paid zero.

  3. I think the Bed and Breakfast associations should join in on a class action suit. Air B&B has completely misrepresented the Hosted inns of almost all places. Guests automatically use the ABB monaker whether it’s a true B&B or not.

  4. My hopeless message to client support today, AGAIN:
    “Hi, I had decided to leave Airbnb because of the unappropiate behavior of various guests in the recent months (extra guests and mess). Then I decided to give it another try, and a new group checked in. Today there are 6 persons in the apartment instead of the maximum 4 allowed, I said already in person that the visits were not permitted, the extra persons said they were just visiting briefly and leaving. They left indeed, to the grocery store, and showed up again with food and are obviously staying here. Plus, it smells of weed. Could you please intervene?”
    I leave it here for the record.

  5. With AB 375 that just went into effect in California on January 1, 2020, California residents now have the right to a class action lawsuit against Airbnb, Inc should they be found to not be complying with the law.

    There’s also another potential financial risk, Farber says. “The bill provides for an individual’s right to sue, for the first time ” she says. “And it allows class action lawsuits for damages.”

    Again, there’s a 30-day window that starts when the consumers give written notice to a company that they believe their privacy rights have been violated. “If it’s not cured, and the attorney general declines to prosecute, then they can bring a class action suit,” Farber says. “And it’s not just around breaches.”

    For example, the law specifies that companies must have a clearly visible footer on websites offering consumers the option to opt out of data sharing. If that footer is missing, consumers can sue. They can also sue if they can’t find out how their information has been collected or get copies of that information. “It can be around anything,” Farber says.

    The law assigns specific penalties should unauthorized access occur, whether through a breach, exfiltration, theft, or “disclosure as a result of the business’ violation of the duty to implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices,” As currently written, AB 375 allows for penalties of $100 to $750 per consumer per incident, or actual damages, whichever is greater.

    https://www.csoonline.com/article/3292578/california-consumer-privacy-act-what-you-need-to-know-to-be-compliant.html

    • I’m in!!! I’m over them. I have waited 11 weeks for them to make good on a $4,800 damage claim and because I used a small business to rectify the damages to my property, they denied my claim. I’ve been a host for almost 4 years and this one has sent me over the edge. I know I’m not the only one in this position. I’m ready to file this class action lawsuit against the host guarentee claim and the claim that I have a security deposit for these purposes and yet I can’t get it?

  6. Guest damaged my property beyond recognition…they did a regular booking but later had a huge unauthorized party in my house, i was told by neighbors they got into a big fight and started breaking my windows and furniture’s… Its been over 3 weeks now and Airbnb is yet to do anything towards my repairs.. I am in. The videos and pictures of the damages should have provoked any reasonable company to action but obviously care less..

  7. Will Morgan and Morgan handle a class action suit for neighbors of AirBnB party houses when the so-called super hosts rent to less than desirable guests who trash the neighborhood, party all night, do drugs, loud music, cars in and out, garbage piled up outside? These kind of hosts give rental properties a bad rap.

    • Actually I believe Airbnb started a new hotline for neighbors to complain. It is all part of them trying to clean up their image before their planned 2020 IPO offering. I just read it last night. But also, you can report them to your local code enforcement and law enforcement.

    • I think the super host status has nothing to do with the damages these guests and Airbnb caused to this host. Airbnb should be responsible for its gross negligence. If you didn’t have any bad guests experience and horrible Airbnb service, lucky you. But I have had many. No need to blame hosts who are trying to bring justice.

  8. I had a dozen guests who caused me stress and damages and I’m fed up with Airbnb. So I’ve been thinking about class action myself and looking for someone to join me. Guess I’ll join you. Will call Morgan & Morgan today and keep you posted.

  9. The same happened to me last month. I just kicked off all the group after 3 days. They were yelling at night, invited extra persons to stay over, my parking lot and the street were invaded with extra cars, on top of that they had a rude attitude towards me. I basically told them, either you leave and cancel voluntarily, or I call the cops and they kick you out. After all it is a private property, mine, not Airbnb’s. Airbnb’s “Unsupport Center” were upset with me because I broke their rules -their right to charge fees. They were not upset at all with the guests, and even accepted to refund them, partially, after charging an extra for the extra persons (luckily I talked with an efficient staff member, one of a million, and he did all what he could given Airbnb’s policies). There were no sanctions ever for the guests, they are still free to book in Airbnb and I can’t comment anything since they canceled the booking. Following this extremely stressful situation, I have received two other problematic groups in only two months, with extra guests, rude attitude, smoking in the property… I am not up for a lawsuit, but I am certainly leaving Airbnb as a host, and I am in the process of canceling next reservations and close the listing.

  10. The trouble with Airbnb it’s that like every big company, it doesnt work as a solid entity with consistent criteria. The staff at call centres are clueless, and they apply conservative arbitration to reduce cancelations which is fair enough really- but also encourage guests to abuse. It would be either guests abusing or hosts abusing with cancelations.. Neither are acceptable. But their one size fits all governance sucks. Them the price minimizer tool, the extra fees. Just devised to pass all profit to Airbnb at our expense. Guests asking for discounts all the time, and when you look at the extra booking fees. Then constantly pushing promotions – when they know that 10-20 pc discounts wipe out any profit or maintenance budget. They grew too fast, and are picking up the pieces, or just keep going racking profit or investors money, with no long term plans. Maybe it’s impossible to please both hosts and guests.. Maybe it will segment into a luxury division (premium) and a bargain basement for the high maintenance low profit guests, along with amateur hosts.. a bit like different football leagues.

  11. Your mistake. How could you ever agree to letting them stay without an Airbnb booking? This makes no sense. What someone says is one thing, but what is in writing is quite another. If the guest violated TOS, then they have to go. If they booked for a month on a nonrefundable booking, then it’s up to you to refund. To be decent, you might have given them half back. But to let the booking go on while off of the platform, no way. That’s on you.

    • They cannot prohibit class-action. If there is fraud proven, like a faults million dollar guarantee, they cannot stop it. They can say whatever they want…that’s what stops most people from pursuing it.

      And just so you know, when you at an auto shop with signs posted “We are not responsible for theft of items left in your car”, that is also not true. They are responsible and the signs are to discourage claims, not release liability.

      • “19.11 No Class Actions or Representative Proceedings. You and Airbnb acknowledge and agree that, to the fullest extent permitted by law, we are each waiving the right to participate as a plaintiff or class member in any purported class action lawsuit, class-wide arbitration, private attorney-general action, or any other representative proceeding as to all Disputes.”

        Taken from Airbnb ToS.

        Your point is out the window. By being on the platform, you agree to the Airbnb ToS by default.

        Here’s the link if you don’t believe me: https://www.airbnb.ie/terms

        🙂

  12. Same thing happened to me basically. Guests lied about who was coming and how many people and they basically took over the entire property which was not the deal they’re supposed to rent single rooms and the house is shared with other guests. They proceeded to destroy my property On camera on my security cams. Airbnb kicked me off with no explanation whatsoever.

    • Ditto. We were kicked off as well although we were Superhosts. It was our livelihood and they didn’t even give us a chance to rectify the situation. They are bullies and operating a monopoly as we tried to rent on home away and was no business.

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