I want to take the time to write this email in order to communicate how bitter this vacation turned out to be. This was my first experience with Airbnb and was awful.
We got a reservation from Thursday to Sunday. First we arrived at the house and nobody was there to receive us. We were made aware that the key was going to be located in the lockbox. I found the key in the lockbox and was taking my bags inside the house when I saw a person sneaking around. Later on the day that I was evicted I recalled he was the owner, but he never presented himself. I was there just in a vigilant state since the first second we arrived at that home.
Then, I encountered the house rules that communicated that there were two recording cameras in the front and the pool (I did not notice in the beginning due to the fact I was nor expecting that detail). I do not have anything against people recording to protect their house but I think that when it’s a rental home you need to communicate this detail to the guest paying and driving a lot of hours to get to the rental house. It is also illegal to record anybody without permission.
Airbnb policy says that this has to be on the listing, then on the house rules. I assume that this recording is probably based on the fact that the house tiles (that are interior tiles) are the same around the pool. Of course they make the area around the pool really slippery. A solution for this would be placing rugs (also in the attached pictures), which is not the best solution but I imagine the cheapest one, and probably a motive to justify recording in a swimming pool area where people are bathing in swimming suits, including minors.
I think this is a violent violation of privacy and once you arrive there and drive almost four hours and paid for the reservation, what option do you have? Either accept the cameras or leave.
Then the owner started calling me about having more than six guests at the house. We arranged in the beginning for four guests and a minor. Then the same day I sent him a message through Airbnb notifying him that we were going to be six guest and a minor. I also sent the name and ages of the people staying with me; they never let me know that I could not receive any visitors.
My vacation plan was to stay near Naples and Fort Myers, and have some family pass by. The only thing that interested me about the house was the pool because I do not like to use a hotel pool with all the COVID-19 issues. I explained to him that they were family, we were not having any party, loud music or anything inappropriate, and that those family members were going to leave.
I offered him a peaceful way to resolve the issue, but he insisted that my visitors needed to leave at that instant and me with them. He told me to call Airbnb because they had my money, not him.
I explained to the owner that I did not want to disrespect his house rules because I understood that when we are guests, we are not the owners and need to respect the rules. We were not going to do any damage to the house. We brought our own towels, sheets, plates, and glasses. I asked him to understand that I needed to contact Airbnb to know about my options because I have a baby that has disabilities and receives therapy and I needed time to find out what to do.
I called Airbnb and naively thought that everything was resolved. The next day we left the house to go to the beach. When I arrived back, I found somebody knocking on the front door. It was the owner with the sheriff to evict me, at 8:30 PM, with my family and my baby.
First, they did not have an eviction notice. Because I am a professional person, and I did not want more problems or distress for my son, I decided to peacefully abandon the house even though they did not have any eviction order.
I felt threatened by the police, like they were expecting the minimum detail to justify the owner’s action and accused me of being a law breaker, or maybe a violent person. For that reason I started packing my belongings (they gave me 30 minutes to abandon the property and literally go to the streets).
When I went to the car, they were laughing and chatting outside like old friends. I asked them for a police report or the paper eviction and they told me that there was no report, nothing. When I finished packing my belongings, I asked the owner to come inside the house and check that everything was working perfectly because I did not want to be accused later of breaking anything.
The first time he refused, trying to justify it with COVID-19, but as I said before I am a front line nurse fighting against COVID-19 and mask use and social distancing. In the end he decided to go in and check (I have witnesses) every faucet, toilet, bed, and the electrical devices and stated everything was perfect.
Then he started calling us f—ing Cubans, dirty Cubans and other discriminatory and racist comments. This was my vacation after a month fighting COVID-19 on the front line (I also read Airbnb’s COVID-19 policy). There is nothing about COVID-19 that anyone can use against me to justify any bad actions.
I was literally on the street at 9:00 PM on a Friday at a gas station four hours from home, with a disabled baby crying and screaming traumatized and extremely stressed because of this situation. I tried calling Airbnb twice (both 45 minutes on the phone) without any answer. Nightmare vacation.