Even with Roaches, Guest not Sure Who to be Upset with

blankThis isn’t a clear cut black and white Airbnb horror story. There are some things I should have been more aggressive on, but in the middle of a pandemic I feel it fair not to be too aggressive because for all I know this could have been my host’s only source of income.

To begin, I walked in and the place was very much not clean. I was given a warning by my boyfriend, to which he felt the judgement call up to me. To be honest, my mind was on their cute little pig that met me at the door; he was so sweet.

I quickly looked around and noticed maybe one or two critters. It was no big deal; it’s getting warm and in Mississippi the critters start coming out. My boyfriend is definitely a city boy so he freaks out about everything. I messaged the host telling her exactly that.

However, I was wrong. It wasn’t until really late into the night that more started coming out and they were huge. That’s when I really looked at the place. The kitchen sink wasn’t cleaned (why did I pay a cleaning fee?) and under the bed/chairs/sink there were enough either droppings or roach body parts. I was disgusted.

We couldn’t find a place to book that late at night so we were stuck one night. I kept joking that my cat would defend us from the roaches while we slept (I couldn’t sleep that night). The next morning we were trying to get out to the Marriott that I booked. The pig says good bye on the way out (he really was a sweet pig and I’ve never seen a pig run to me until that day).

The host at least refunded me for the other days, and as for the cleaning fee I wasn’t very aggressive because as I’ve said before I’m not sure if this is their only source of income. They also let me bring my cat without putting in a pet deposit.

I contacted Airbnb later about the service fee (possibly the cleaning fee) that night because trying to get settled into a new place last minute had its own issues. I will admit I wasn’t very aggressive with it; maybe it’s because during all this pandemic I feel like that isn’t what the world needs right now.

Airbnb basically told me to f&%k off on the service fee and I definitely wasn’t getting the cleaning fee refunded. I should have checked with VBRO or nearby hotels, because most times with all the fees it ends up being more expensive than a Marriott. This was one of those times.

I’m not sure if I should be upset with the host, Airbnb, myself or anyone really. It’s up to you, are you willing to take the risk? Is the pig worth it?

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Being Scammed with a Fake Listing Would have been Better

We booked this Airbnb in Switzerland, seeking a peaceful beautiful corner of Swiss alpine experience that was indicated in the advertisement. Instead, we would instead just putting up a tent in a train station. You would have more room, and get the same experience of living on a railway track.

Literally every few minutes a train was passing by, even throughout most of the night. Many were so fast that the place shook. It is so close to the train station that we could hear the noise of cars being loaded onto the train. It was the complete opposite of the peaceful and scenic spot that we were expecting.

Sleeping in train station might also have been cleaner. The bed sheets were disgusting, stained and grimy. Desperate for sleep, we even stripped the bed hoping that the mattress might have been less awful. That was a mistake; it was a stomach-turning science experiment.

The towels looked marginally clean, so we made pseudo sheets out of them and disinfected ourselves in the morning. The floor and chairs were covered with spots of grease; we just didn’t feel like touching anything without putting on gloves or needing to take a shower afterwards.

Someone in the building must be a chainsmoker, as we were so often greeted with puffs of cigarette smoke floating into the place. Not exactly the fresh alpine air we had in mind.

We have stayed at hundreds of Airbnbs and similar accommodations at this point. This was nearly the worst. The only ones we can think that might surpass the awfulness of this place are the couple that were pure scams that didn’t exist. Honestly, we would have preferred this to be a scam versus the misery of staying at this place.

We should have left in the first hour, but all the hotels in town were booked and we just didn’t want to spend our limited time battling with the host and Airbnb. Anyway, we realize it is impossible to post negative reviews on Airbnb without getting hassled or blacklisted. We’re hoping this candid review ends up helping someone else avoid our experience and just put up a tent in a nearby train station instead.

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Never Been so Angry Dealing with Airbnb

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I booked with an Airbnb host going off the pictures. I arrived in LA and called to tell them I would be having dinner with a friend and would arrive late. They said that was not a problem.

After dinner I took an Uber to the location and called saying that I had arrived. They said they would be right down. I waited 15-20 minutes and finally a lady that actually looked homeless came out while on the phone and waved me to follow her.

We went through a broken gate and beat up door and entered the building in which the entrance was completely surrounded by trash on the floor. The air smelled like cigarettes and mildew. I walked further in and heard her on the phone saying she could not find a key for the room.

The place was a mess and gross. I felt so uncomfortable there. Especially with the virus all over.

She went off and told me to wait. I finally got tired of waiting, left, and got a hotel. I asked for a cancellation and refund and they refused.

I left a review and then they responded saying I was on drugs and that was not cool. I will be going after them legally. I have already hired a private investigator. I also emailed the CEO of Airbnb.

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Pensacola Letdown Leads to Three-Year Battle for Refund

I have been a long-time customer of Airbnb. In December 2017 we booked a place in Pensacola. When we arrived the place was a mess, and obviously not clean from the previous occupant. I phoned the host and she offered to rush over and clean it.

At this point my husband refused to stay. We left and stayed at a nearby hotel with free breakfast.

The host offered a full refund. Over the next two years and after countless emails, she refunded what she was given from Airbnb in March 2020. I had a stroke in January 2018 and again in November 2018. Needless to say, this slowed down my efforts to obtain my refund.

When I explained my situation to Airbnb support, they said I waited too long. Well, the host dragged it out to her advantage; I couldn’t even leave a review at that point. I’m not talking about a lot of money here; it’s the principle. Guess I’ll stick to hotels — at least they feed you and give points for free stays, and are usually ready for your stay.

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Terrible Host with no way to Contact Airbnb

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Airbnb hosts accused us bringing extra people and that is not true. We booked for 12 and there were 11 of us. Proof is attached. I’m writing on behalf of members of KC Nippon and myself. I was a world karate champion. We travel a lot and use Airbnb very often. We never had a bad experience like the one in NYC.

I came to NYC for a competition with ten kids. The apartment was not ready when we arrived: the house was dirty and some workers were putting on a bathroom door that was completely missing. The other door was broken and some of the furniture as well.

After two nights, the toilet broke and all the sewage was coming back up. We contacted the super and she promised to fix it. That was very risky for the kids’ health and we had to close that bathroom. We couldn’t use it for the rest of our stay. That caused a lot of delays in our program and a lot of complaints from kids’ parents.

When we complained about it, the host sent threatening SMS messages (see attached photo). She also came the day that we were leaving to check everything, and when we complained she start to be very rude and was yelling at the kids. She is listed as a real estate agent and I’m not even sure can she legally rent apartments on Airbnb in New York State.

When we came back we saw a very impolite message: the agency wanted us to pay them extra money. We booked and pay in advance for 12 persons, but there were only 11 of us. We will not pay anything extra.

At this moment we would like to request a refund for our expenses. The kids’ health was in danger (considering coronavirus and all the unsanitary conditions). My personal opinion is that Airbnb should protect their users from hosts like this.

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Cured Photos, Airbnb Says Everything is Within Policy

We had to escape from an Airbnb apartment. It was not as described, with photos only showing the best parts of it.

Most importantly, it was unsafe. The neighboring building was a dump and abandoned apparently; the picture of the entrance did not show this. I have proof of how it looks in reality and can send it. It is unsafe.

We couldn’t get into the apartment because the path to it was completely covered with ice. There were literally no steps; it had not been cleaned for weeks. We have taken pictures of this. I fell and almost ended up on the road with cars. The icy path opened directly to the busy road and there were no pathways.

The bed was yellowed and very old. We could not even think of sleeping on it. The toilet was clean but smelled of urine — filthy and not hygienic. The other small bedroom had the window shut from the outside. This Airbnb was nothing like the sunshine in the pictures.

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Airbnb Host Expects Guest to do All Cleaning

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I planned a weekend in Montreal for my son and I and tried Airbnb for first time. Upon arrival I noticed food crumbs all over the sleeper sofa in the living room. In the bedroom, my son pulled back the blankets; the sheets were stained. We contacted the host and he told me I could find clean sheets in the closet or dryer. After driving 6.5 hours, apparently I should change the sheets. I would also have had to wash the blankets, clean the sofa, stove, the TV, and god knows what was on the table; it had a film of grease on it.

I left and got a hotel for the weekend. My host’s response was to tell me since I left he hoped I had locked the door because I was responsible for the house and he would look at the place in the morning. I checked in with him the next day and heard nothing back. He then contacted me to say his property manager went to check on the place and there was a couple of issues but nothing as bad as I implied. Stained sheets are a deal breaker.

I contacted Airbnb and asked for a refund. Even though I asked for a manager, the agent gave me a $11.32 refund because he felt my issue with the host could have been resolved by me cleaning the place at 11:30 at night and washing all the bedding. I don’t know about anyone else, but when I arrive at a hotel it’s really nice to not have to clean for three hours before being able to relax.

Was Someone Killed on the Mattress at this Airbnb?

Welcome to Airbnb Hell. That’s our experience with a recent listing – I can’t actually call them “hosts”. People like that should never be allowed to rent out premises. The warning signs were there.

We entered the premises, and it didn’t quite look like the shiny photos. Anyway, we read the notice about not stepping loudly on the stairs, and the wifi details. The wifi didn’t work. So we contacted them, and found that in fact, those details were incorrect, and we were given other wifi details. The TV didn’t really work. After a few replies, the hosts stopped responding to that issue. Well, it did work, but none of the remotes operated it, it only had one channel, and there were no instructions at all.

We found the kitchen tap broken, the toilet seat loose, and the strip on the floor between the kitchen and living room was loose. We found no shampoo or soap in the shower. Well, all these things indicated a lack of care, but one overlooks them. What else could we do?

However, we discovered, to our horror, one thing that could not be overlooked. The mattress had a wrinkle in it, so we pulled back the sheets to find that not only was there no mattress cover, but the whole mattress was blood stained. Someone died on it? Blood was smeared all over it. It also had a lot of dirt, muck, it looked like it came out of a heroin doss house. Seriously, you wouldn’t put a homeless person on a mattress like that. Only a drug addict, completely out of it, would sleep on that mattress. No way we were going to spend another night on that bed.

We contacted for the hosts at 9:00 AM. No response. 10:00 AM, no response. We waited. No response. We contacted Airbnb. They couldn’t get a hold of them either. Finally, at almost 1:00 PM, four hours later, the hosts offered to get a mattress cover. We replied that the mattress was disgusting, and needed to be replaced. These people were charging good money for this listing, more than local hotels charge for a room.

Then it was the afternoon. No communication. I enquired what was happening at 5:00 PM, 5:30 PM, and 7:30 PM. No response. I called Airbnb. They couldn’t get a hold of the hosts. Finally at 10:00 PM the hosts informed us they were not going to replace the mattress. They were not convinced because we were upset and angry. If we had been nicer, they might have done it.

Wow. Who are these people? What are they doing running a business through Airbnb? They did not even believe the mattress was in poor condition. They claimed it happened recently, which is blatantly untrue; the mattress was clearly the result of years of dirt muck and personal grime.

So, this horrible experience left us high and dry. We had to go to a hotel that night, and arrived at midnight after all this trouble. The next morning at 7:00 AM, we were looking for other accommodations, but of course because it was the last minute, there was pretty well nothing left. We spent a further 14 hours dealing with Airbnb, to try to find a suitable alternative. Sitting in the car, with our food spoiling.

I had to argue with three Airbnb case managers who said they would only give us $200 towards another place, which was not going to work, as anything in that price bracket had disappeared months ago. Case managers promised to call back, but never did. Finally, at 6:00 PM, we got a case manager who actually helped, and got a proper voucher for us. Finally, at 9:30 PM that night, we located something (a few places I contacted were in fact not available).

To add insult to injury, that horrible mattress must have had bugs, which bit my wife; I took photos. Like I say, these people are dangerous as “hosts”. They don’t care, they have no sense of responsibility to their guests, and they have no standards.

Not Quite Airbnb Hell, but Certainly Uncomfortable

A few weeks ago I had my first Airbnb experience. Reviews on the place in Lancaster were decent, and the photos looked nice. The host did not live there. It looked like a very quiet, countryside place. I was looking forward to it and having the peace and quiet of being alone. The host did warn me that a family member would/could be there, but their area of the house was private with their own bath, so no need to worry about being bothered. My stay was for three nights.

A bit about me before I continue on. I am 69 years old. I don’t act it, don’t look it – so I am told – and I certainly don’t feel my age. I am very healthy and my energy level is way beyond others my age. Mentally, nothing gets by me.

I had traveled all day, flying from PA to Lancaster, having rented a car at the Charlotte airport. I was anxious to get to the place I was staying at. I had received directions for entering the house, which was very detailed, saying once I parked, I would be at the back door. A code was given.

Once I pulled in, I looked at the back door, which was on a deck that had 14 steps that I had to carry my 30-pound suitcase up. I just sit there in the car for a moment, wondering why this was not mentioned when it did mention having to climb steps once inside to get to my room.

Oh well. I am 5’2″ tall, and average weight. I lugged the suitcase by taking a few steps, then hoisting it up, another few steps, hoist, another few, and hoist, until I was finally at the door.

The whole while I was climbing and hoisting, I was thinking about how I was going to have to deal with getting my suitcase back down in a few days when I left. I entered a lovely sunroom; it was dark, but dimly lit inside. I moved to the kitchen area, which had been explained in the instructions.

I immediately was drawn to the kitchen sink, as I parked my suitcase so I could make a second trip with my other smaller pieces of luggage left in the car. The kitchen sink was filled with dirty dishes. Not just a few. I frowned and wondered why this would be left for a paying guest to see. Next I see a cast iron frying pan, sitting near the stovetop, with remains of cooked meat and grease.

After retrieving all that I needed from the car, I then began my ascent of the stairway to my room, having to go through a foyer. All was quiet, the stairway was lit. I then saw outdoor debris on the steps and realized they must not have vacuumed, and again thought and wondered why they didn’t have it cleaned better.

I am an immaculate housekeeper, so tried to shrug it off as just me being too clean. After all, I really couldn’t do anything about it. The house did look like a lovely house, and it was only for three days. I would basically only be sleeping there.

The Airbnb listing stated, in several places, that there were at least four rooms that were shared with owners, one being the kitchen. It even stated you could cook your own meals. This was not my intent, since I was there for a wedding and visits with family, so after eating a cup of yogurt and banana in the mornings (which I bought), I would be gone until the evening each day and leaving by 6:00 AM after my third night.

I never went into any other rooms, nor even peeked into other rooms. I only went through the places I had to go through to get to my room. Once in the room, it looked decent enough, but the carpet was dirty around the doors – actually black. The color of the carpet was a light tan.

I looked at the bed, which was very high, with about a dozen decorative pillows and cushions on it. I went up close to the bed and stood there in wonder as to how in the world I was going to get into it. It came up to my breast area in height. I looked around for a stool; there was none at the bed. I tried to swing my left leg up on it, then tried my right leg. No go.

Even though I am in decent physical condition, I just knew I would not be able to run and make a flying leap onto the top of the bed. I stood there questioning, out loud, wondering how they could not think that someone short would not be able to get into this bed, and how they didn’t provide a stool for that purpose.

I stacked up about five pillows and attempted it that way. I didn’t work, because I sank too low when stepping on the pillows. I was perplexed. I looked at the end to see if I might step on the foot-end frame to climb up. Due to the high curve and no decent ledge to step on, that was out of the question.

I decided to just use the bathroom and then come up with another plan for getting myself into the bed. The bathroom was referred to as the “Jack & Jill bathroom”. I’ll let you determine what that meant. Immediately I saw the dirty floor. It was white tile and obviously had not been mopped properly in a long time, as there were shoe prints and hair on the floor, and two throw rugs that were linty and matted down, so you knew they hadn’t been shaken or washed in sometime.

The toilet seat was open, the water inside the bowl was brown, and remnants of one of those toilet things that hang on the side was sticking to the side in a blue glob. I was really feeling disgusted.

I then returned to tackle how to get into the bed. I spied a chair in the corner. It was too heavy for me to move, but it had a rocker/glider foot stool at it. I wondered if it might be high enough to give me the boost I needed to get into the bed once I showered. I brought it over to the bed, not yet having pulled back the covers.

Well, it worked. It was just high enough, but of course the minute you put your foot on it, it would glide back and forth. I wedged it up against the side table next to the bed, now it only glided to one side instead of back and forth. I quickly steadied my elbows on the bed and swung the free leg up. I was on it.

Now to get off? I would just slide off on my belly till my feet hit the floor, as to step on the glider might be too hazardous. Once off, I pulled back the comforter and folded it nicely at the foot-end, after taking off the dozen pillows. I then saw the pillows. There was a brown stain on one that looked like dried blood. Then I saw further down a stain on the sheet, more towards the foot-end.

Fortunately, I brought my own pillowcase, because these pillows smelled like someone’s greasy head. I cringed and was feeling so disappointed in what I was seeing thus far. I placed the one with the stain on the floor and used my pillowcase on the other.

The room was too warm and the host did message me earlier, stating that if it needed adjusting to let him know as it was controlled by the wifi and he would have to adjust it. After showering I went straight to bed. The shower stall was okay, but it really was in need of a good cleaning; the corners looked yucky. I slept okay.

While having my yogurt in the morning, I sat at the kitchen table and messaged the host about the heat and requested it be turned down a few degrees, which he did take care of. I told him of the bed issue. He apologized and offered for me to sleep in another room they rent out. I decided just to deal with the room I was in, not wanting to cause more work for them by tearing up another bed.

I had brought my own tea to make, so used the microwave to heat it up. Other than that, I did not use the kitchen at all. The counters were dirty, too. I had asked the host, when I messaged him about the heat, where the dishwashing liquid was so I could do up some dishes in the sink that were there when I arrived. He told me it was under the sink. I didn’t not find any and decided I was not going to bother cleaning up the kitchen, as this was not why I was there, to clean for them.

On my last day there, I was gone all day and returned around 5:00 PM, having brought with me a premade salad from a store to eat for my evening meal. When I arrived, a family member was there, which had been talked about in the listing. She was watching TV in another room with a friend.

As I passed that room to get to mine, I introduced myself and asked if it would be okay to eat my salad at the kitchen table. I did not want to invade on their privacy. She assured me that it would be okay. They left shortly after that and she offered for me to watch TV if I wanted. I thanked her and told her that I wouldn’t be watching TV, as I was leaving early in the morning and needed to get some sleep.

I found a message on my phone during that time, from the host. It was strange; this was my third day and I would be leaving. His message was asking me if this was my first time doing Airbnb. The message had been left earlier in the day. I was with family all day, so didn’t realize until then that he had messaged me.

I answered that it was my first time and asked him why he was wondering. He responded saying because I had asked about the dishwashing liquid, that indicated I was using the kitchen, which wasn’t part of the rent. Naturally, I was stunned. I messaged back that I had not really used the kitchen – only to eat my yogurt in the morning, which I stored in their fridge and to make myself a cup of tea. I then reminded him that his ad indicated it was okay to use it.

After sending that message off I pulled up the Airbnb listing to read it again, to make sure I had not been mistaken or misinterpreted anything. I saw it was in at least three different places about the kitchen and other rooms being shared with owner, so I messaged him again to let him know that it was clearly stated in the listing that it was shared with the owner, but told him that I didn’t use it anyway.

It was obvious that he was now feeling insulted that I was right. He wrote back, telling me that no one else has ever done this before – other guests, he meant. By now, I felt he was accusing me of doing something I should not have done. I stopped responding. He wrote again, saying, “Congratulations, you are the first.”

I started shaking, wondering why he was acting this way. I did not respond. I showered and went to bed. However, I was not able to sleep at all, as I could not believe how this all turned on me in an instant. I could not wait to get out of there. I felt so uncomfortable about being there.

I was not going to say anything to him about the dirtiness of the place, the dishes in the sink, the greasy pan, dirty bathroom, sheets, etc., but now I decided to take pictures of all that I have explained here. They are on my phone and I don’t know how or even if I could transfer them to the computer, so won’t be putting them out here.

I don’t see how to save what I am writing here to see if I can do that later. It would have been too hard for me to write all of this from my phone, as I had to file a resolution complaint on the phone to do the pictures and it was difficult due to the small space, and having to write so much.

I waited several days, once home, and it was Christmas a few days later. Right after I contacted Airbnb via phone and explained all of this to them and asked them how to handle this with them. The only way to send the pictures was to open a resolution complaint, so I did.

Well, it all backfired. They ended up telling me my complaint was not valid since I didn’t contact the host, first, and also because I stayed the entire time despite the place being dirty. I have gotten numerous messages from Airbnb since I began the process. I’ve called them two more times. I wanted to explain further, but it has all been too much hassle.

I sent the pictures to prove it along with my initial complaint. I told them I did not want a refund, I just want for the host to see the pictures. I’ve decided this just isn’t worth it. I sit here now, just wanting someone to know the truth about it all.

Would I do another stay with Airbnb? Yes, as my son told me to just stick with those who are Superhosts and he will help me find one who is better, as he has much more experience with Airbnb.

I was so disappointed in how it all turned out for me this time, but the host showed his true colors in the way he reacted to me being right about what was in the listing. I never did sleep a wink that last night. My intentions were to leave around 6:00 AM; I ended up leaving at 4:30 AM and being relieved I was out of there.

That morning, while my car was heating up, I ate my yogurt in the car so as not to have to eat it at the kitchen table that was not included in the rent, as he claimed. I don’t know if Airbnb showed him the photos that I sent, if they did that is all I wanted, anyway. The person who is supposed to be taking care of the place is the family member. She isn’t doing it and the host needs to know.

At least I was able to get this off my chest. Sooner or later there will be others that complain about the dirty place or nothing mentioned about the deck steps or the too high bed and no stool. The last I checked on the listing, which was about a week ago, the ad still reads the same. How do you tell them their place is too dirty while you are staying there?

I had no other place to go to and could not afford a hotel, but according to Airbnb, because I didn’t leave, it made my complaint invalid. What a poor way to handle this when pictures tell it all. I stated that it wasn’t about getting a refund, so it wasn’t costing Airbnb anything by having to return my money. Yes, I stayed, but that doesn’t mean I wanted to.

Complete Dump Misrepresented on Airbnb

The Airbnb house was infested with rodents. This was not a mild problem. There were multiple rodent droppings in the cupboards inside the pots and pans, strainers, tupperware, etc. I discovered new droppings in the pantry on our second morning (where we were keeping our food). The host had to provide us with large plastic bins to safely store our food and protect it from rodents. Droppings were littered under the refrigerator.

The house needs major repairs. The deck is completely rotten and unsafe to walk on with the second floor railing about to fall off. The septic system leaked sewer gas into the house when it rained or if we took a shower. We saw a pipe draining out of the side of the house with brown/soapy liquid that smelled like sewage, but can’t verify that it was. Smelled bad though.

The host does not present truthful information in the listing regarding handicapped accessibility. There are no bedrooms or bathrooms that are accessible without climbing stairs. There are also no railings on the stairs at all. I specifically asked the host about this because my elderly father was traveling with us and he needed an accessible bedroom and bathroom. The host assured me that there were accommodations for my father “on the main floor” but failed to mention that it involved climbing four stairs without a railing. I guess he just wanted to rent the house.

The dishwasher does not work. It is worn out and even after we got it to run through a cycle, it did not clean the dishes. The host sent a technician during our stay who was supposed to “order parts”. We were left with a moldy dish rack (yuck) so we could hand wash dishes. I complained and the host sent a new dish rack.

The pots and pans were so worn out and scraped up that the non-stick coating came off in our food. They were unusable. I complained and when a lady (his wife?) delivered us a new set of pans and told me “well, it’s just a rental”. People renting a $486/night “rental” have the right to expect a clean kitchen with usable appliances and cookware.

There was a waste can half full of moldy water underneath one of the downstairs sinks. The trap on the sink was a worn out rubber type that completely leaked. Obviously the host knew and just put a trashcan under it. It smelled bad and we poured out the moldy water. Again, $486/night.

Years ago this was probably a nice family home. Currently it needs major repairs and has health and safety issues. The host is misrepresenting it as “a truly magnificent meditation retreat” and even though Airbnb is now aware of this scam, they refuse to hold the owner accountable. They obviously make a lot of money from high end listings like this, even if guests are scammed and it’s a dump.