How to Move on a Problem Airbnb Guest?

Someone please help me with some advice as how to address a guest who has kept the bedroom really dirty. He is a long-term tenant and the bedroom looks totally trashed. Fortunately he’s often out so he doesn’t use the kitchen very much.

He has told me he has never cooked in his life so when he cooks something he has burnt my frying pan and the things he’s washed are all grimy and oily feeling when I pick them up.

The bedroom is the main problem. It has been a month since he changed the sheets, doona cover, and pillow cases from his bed. It’s problematic in the hot Sydney summer. He’s also had a bad cold.

When I asked him to please change his sheets after a month, he agreed reluctantly and put the fresh sheets I’d given him over the bed. I noticed last week they had been pushed down and the mattress protector has also been pushed off; he’s sleeping on the bare mattress.

The room already smells really bad with empty biscuit and chip packets and a used jar of Nutella sitting open next to his bed. I know this because when he goes out he leaves his door open and I can smell the stench from the room.

I’ve had a similar problem in the past with a guest not changing their sheets during their stay in my spare room. After they left the sheets, doona, and pillows smelled of rancid sweat. The smell stayed on even after washing and I ended up having to throw it all out and buy a new set of everything.

I have even had problems with him using the bathroom. He left a soaking wet bathmat where he’s said he soaked the floor and had to mop up… so he used the mat, then left it scrunched in the corner. I’ve been repeatedly hanging the mat up to dry. When he couldn’t see where it was he used my personal hand towel to wipe the floor and then hung it back on the railing soaked and dirty.

I’ve tried talking to him but he’s often out. When I try to raise something he always says “yes” but keeps on with the same behavior. I feel like I’m living with a 15-year-old teenage son. Not a young man in his mid 20s. I get the distinct impression he has never had to clean up after himself. They are not necessarily big things but a series of little things that are incredibly frustrating.

I’ve tried ringing Airbnb and the assistant at the call center in the Philippines says I can’t do anything about it. They have discouraged me when I said I was considering asking him to leave. The latest is that he doesn’t flush the toilet properly after doing a number two. They discouraged me from asking him to leave, saying it would be negatively assessed by the organisation if I did so. They said if there is any damage to my property that I could only send them photos after he has vacated and then I’d have to submit a claim to their resolution center. I have another three weeks of this guest and I feel stuck. Any suggestions?

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3 Comments

  1. I am a host who frequently has long term guests. They have a way of getting on your nerves unless you are very explicit up front. Unfortunately this is your learning opportunity. It starts with your rules. He should be cleaning up after every sojourn to the bathroom and kitchen every time and immediately. A burned pot must be replaced. Hint – microwaves only. Update your rules with him immediately and ask to speak with him gently but firmly.

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