Five-Star Airbnb Host, Zero-Star Service

I discovered in July that I was not getting paid for my reservations. I also discovered that Airbnb was paying some of my funds to a bonus bank account which listed my information. I had no knowledge of this and did not authorize it.

It has been two months of almost weekly emails demanding to know what Airbnb is going to do to resolve this. I am now owed approximately $12,000. No one seems to understand or want to deal with the problem. I am now forced to file a superior court breach of contract and fraud case to attempt to get resolved.

My home is rented almost 90% of the time and now I can’t pay the taxes or the property managers. If you have any comments which would assist me, please feel free to make them. I have even suffered a stroke trying to get Airbnb to do something.

30-Day Stay Cancellation Policy: Host in Wynwood, Miami

I made a 30-day reservation on Airbnb for my daughter who moved closer to home. The reservation was about two weeks before the arrival date. Well, long story short, she was not able to stay at the place, so I cancelled seven days before arrival. I only got back approximately $60 out of the $495. Why?

Because it was the host’s cancellation policy, which was not clearly mentioned before making the reservation. It was hidden apparently at the end (after making the reservation) and not very obvious. The $60 was for cleaning and admin fees. I contacted the host and Airbnb intervened too but the host declined to refund the money.

Apparently, there is a loophole in this policy, which Airbnb has not addressed. If you do not cancel a month before a long-term stay like a 30-day or longer stay, then you forfeit the money paid. But this does not account for reservations made a week or two before the arrival date. In theory, this policy should be null and void.

Talking to an attorney, most courts would not enforce this policy. From the advice of an attorney, the best route is pursuing it via the credit card company. There was no service received, it was cancelled timely, and the ad was seemingly misleading (since it was not clear it was a shared room from the site I initially went on, which was not an Airbnb site but directed me to Airbnb). I do not expect any help from this since it seems most people have lost this same cancellation issue too.

My advice: do not book long-term stays at all. Make sure they are one-week stays. Two weeks is cutting it close and apparently it appears to default to the long-term stay policy.

Note: if this has happened to you per a host’s cancellation policy, an attorney said if there are enough of people impacted by this, we could sue Airbnb and the individual hosts together. Airbnb’s practice is arguably similar to the fine print tactics but they hide the policies after booking. It is considered unfair and deceptive business practices under Florida state laws and federal consumer protection laws, with not making it clear of these policies.

Sites like Priceline and other sites make it very clear that the reservation is either nonrefundable or refundable. Why doesn’t Airbnb do the same?

Sue Airbnb to Receive Your Host Guarantee

I had a guest who lied, saying he lived far away and that he wanted to visit San Francisco. In fact, he live an hour away and wanted a house to trash while he was with his friend. I don’t allow smoking, but I found ashes and cigarette butts in my bedroom. Items were stolen and glasses broken. Urine was everywhere but in the toilet. He annoyed my neighbors, and left trash everywhere.

When I got home four hours after he checked out, I came home to a house with the lights on, TV on, stove burner on high, and windows wide open when it was raining. I was so upset seeing my nice home defiled. I cried for it. I did most of the cleaning myself, but I sent it for money for the stolen and broken items and for the wood floors warped from the rain.

Airbnb’s Home Guarantee office said that they wouldn’t refund me; apparently I violated the terms of service because my house is under contract for sale. My house wasn’t for sale, and it still isn’t. I called and emailed them, and I received this reply: “This is our interpretation and it is the only one that matters. Don’t contact us again about this.”

I then had to research how to sue them. It isn’t hard; I recommend it to everyone who gets ripped off. I sued them in small claims. You need to write a demand letter stating what happened and what you demand, what you want. They have thirty days to respond, and then you can file. For me, they responded right after the demand letter.

Look online on how to write one; you don’t need a lawyer. Small claims in California is for claims under ten thousand dollars. I needed a name to put on the form, so I just used the CEO. I live in California, so maybe it is easier to sue them, but I recommend everyone do it. After I sent the demand letter, I received a crappy apology by email and most of the money I asked for. I am done with them forever.

Airbnb Hosting Fail: Lying on Company Time

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I have been trying to cancel a stay for a guest that added to his original date and somehow decided not to pay for the last day, as in he changed his payment method or something. I am still listening to Airbnb’s Muzak. One person hung up on me. Another had such a deep accent I had no idea what he was saying and when I asked him to speak more clearly he blew up. He interrupted me three times as I tried to give the reservation number and proceeded to say I was first person who couldn’t understand him and was unable to move past this. He talked over me. Then he hung up when I told him: “Stop being tangential. Listen to the code so I can cancel.”

Now I am talking to a case manager, on hold so far for 18 minutes just to cancel. Over one hour to cancel someone who had a cancelled card and no replacement. This is one of four issues I think could have been solved quickly if their website wasn’t missing so many options. It won’t let you make changes without calling them, AKA wasting twenty minutes to two hours per call.

They have also “closed” multiple tickets with no follow up. One guest stole my remote controls. They closed that account because she was a junkie, and I couldn’t see it when she checked in, or smoked with the door open. However, I could tell by her and her guy’s appearance and mannerisms that he was on heroin and she was on meth. I cancelled their reservation and Airbnb keeps me on the phone as they “try to contact guests”, who of course, ignored the calls because they are junkies.

They stole remotes, peed in the basement and ruined bedding. Airbnb didn’t do a thing to reimburse me. The junkies gave me a one-star review and since I was new at hosting, soon after I had no say in it; Airbnb closed my account, so I never got paid back.

I started a listing with a new account and the glowing incidents have happened. One guest entered my next door neighbor’s house. We have clearly marked addresses. I asked for a credit for making my neighbors rightfully scared and angry. They “escalated” the case to a person who apparently can’t even write back to say “Sorry, can’t help.” Nothing other than hours of me explaining how mad I was, many times, with no followup.

Next, a family came and ruined some things like a shoe rack and got stains on the bedding. I asked the guest for reimbursement. They didn’t pay and Airbnb is supposed to take this out of their security deposit since I have clear pictures and even them admitting that they broke the shoe rack.

Still, ten days later, nothing but me repeating myself like a parrot to thickly accented robots who all say “Just one moment, bear with me. May I put you on a brief hold?” and other scripted garbage for “I am doing the least I can for you and have no problem ignoring exactly what you’re clearly stating but will instead regurgitate ‘Airbnb policy’ that has nothing to do with anything other than they assign this to a case manager who, again, either deletes their emails/cases or lacks in even flooring up with me, ever.”

Next, they won’t remove bad feedback. I had a guy give me two stars on location because he literally couldn’t follow his GPS and get out of his car when it said you have arrived at the address. Instead he called me “lost” and after six minutes of telling him where to go, he still went to the wrong house (see above) and stayed there until my neighbors opened their door, saw him in their living room, and told him to get the f*** out.

This dumba*** who can’t follow GPS to get to a very easy to find inner city house goes into someone else’s house, and gets to ding me on location, which hurts my ratings. Will they take these rational explanations into account? Lol – hell no. They just say as long as his review doesn’t have boobies.com or mention the Airbnb investigation that’s open or give my address he can say anything he wants and the feedback stays.

Then they say a guest is only to say a location isn’t a five-star one if I lie about where I am. Yet they won’t remove a terrible review from a guy who clearly has severe intoxication or mental health issues. They let a guest say absolute lies – libel is the legal term for written lies – and kept the feedback. I had one first say my walls weren’t finished, when I have sheetrocked walls. Granted they can use new paint, but saying it was an unfinished room with no real walls? Airbnb just lets it slide because the guests didn’t spam their website with feedback.

I really want to sue this company for wasting my time, money and lying about host guarantees. One of the biggest complaints came from a guest who said he was canceled on in Miami twice in a weekend and had to get a $1000 hotel at the last minute instead of the few hundred for his room his host cancelled “because he decided to stay there himself”. After hours of back and forth, Airbnb comped him $150.

They take no ownership in the hassles. They need to be empathetic and therefore I am confident they will be quickly replaced by a more reasonable company with decent policies and good customer service. I hope another company can bury the bad excuses of Airbnb because I have never had so much frustration with a company that says they will do something and then does nothing. I’m trying to cancel all my reservations without penalty and so far haven’t had anyone respond to my request. If you want to sue this immoral company, I am in line for a class action lawsuit.

Illegal Sublet of my Property on Airbnb

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I own a $3 million dollar home in the Hollywood Hills of Los Angeles. I recently moved out of state and signed a three-year lease with a tenant. My lease specifies that subletting is illegal and specially calls out sites like Airbnb for subletting purposes.

In December of 2018, I discovered that my tenant moved out of my property and started subletting the home on Airbnb (my neighborhood watch found the Airbnb ad and informed me). The police have been called multiple times to my property due to large parties and neighborhood disturbances.

I have reported the listing of my property to Airbnb as an illegal sublet and also have flagged the host. I received an email from Airbnb stating that there is nothing that they can do as the host agreed to the terms and conditions of having full authority/ownership to rent out the property.

What? Nothing you can do, Airbnb? They’re certainly making a boat load of money off an illegal sublet. I’m sure that’s why they won’t shut this ad/person down. I now am represented by a very large legal firm in Los Angeles, we are going through the eviction process with this tenant. The ad is still up and my “soon to be ex-tenant” still continues to rent the house.

This is a huge liability to me if someone gets hurt, my insurance will not cover accidents that occur while subletting. I would like to start a class action lawsuit against Airbnb for not vetting out hosts for ownership or authorization that they can rent out properties on the website. This is completely unacceptable and the only thing I can do is hire a very expensive attorney to remedy this situation. Who’s with me?

AirBnS: Enough is Enough for this Airbnb Host

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I’m an Airbnb host. I used to be proud to announce being an Airbnb host to my friends and family like many others out there until I received every host’s worst nightmare. On March 12th, 2018 I returned to my Bronx home from the result of a guest cancellation at my home. I returned home only to find 80% of my furniture and personal belongings outside sitting in my driveway. This was without a doubt a callous and direct message to me personally from the guest claiming personal justice for his stay being cancelled prematurely.

I’m left suffering from the irresponsible and immature actions of an Airbnb guest. Without any exaggeration, I literally did everything personally within my power outlined within Airbnb’s resolution center to have this issue resolved within the quickest possible timeframe. Unfortunately, even with me taking immediate action to resolve the manner civilly, Airbnb still has failed to successfully come to a realistic resolution and compensate me for personal damages caused by the guest.

Upon doing my due diligence and conducting a thorough investigation of my own, I’ve come to the unfortunate realization that there are countless other hosts worldwide facing this same exact Airbnb “resolution center” nightmare. Airbnb should be ashamed to know that they currently have over 100 open and unresolved host claim cases failing to communicate with hosts (and that’s me being considerate by using a figure as low as 100).

Airbnb prides itself on having morality, empathy and open lines of communication between company, host, and guest. These lines of morality have clearly been compromised greatly, judging from the extensive amount of cases that I’ve recently come across online from performing a simple Google search, looking for people going through similar “resolution center” issues such as myself.

The ultimate conclusion and reality to this revolving door of a “resolution center” is this: everyone who currently has an open Airbnb resolution case will be waiting indefinitely unless immediate action is taken against Airbnb, a company who preys upon unsuspecting hosts such as myself willing to compromise the safety of my home and countless others. Airbnb has clearly broken their own host guarantee rules; this calls for a class action lawsuit.

Downtown Dreamer Airbnb Nightmare with Trains Blaring

We took a job in Biloxi and had to find accommodations for two months. Of course, the day we got the job was the day that the summer rates kicked in so we struggled to find something in our budget that was within ten miles, had a kitchen, and was available for the full two months. We’d never used Airbnb before but after relentlessly searching for the traditional extended stay hotels without any luck, we found a property on Airbnb that was available, fit into our budget (barely) and advertised a full kitchen. Here’s the listing and description:

This spacious 900 square foot two-bedroom apartment is nestled on a side street just off of Washington Ave across from a city park. Private parking and walking distance to shopping, dining and all activities in the downtown area.

The space: Close to everything, downtown Ocean Springs.

Other things to note: We hope your visit to Ocean Springs creates wonderful memories that will last you a life time.

Further down the page there was a section called “House Rules.” Here’s how it looked as I scrolled down:

No smoking, no parties or events, check in time is 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM, prices subject to special event pricing and all local and state taxes. Listed price is for weeknights with a two-night minimum. Pets possible, deposit required. Possible sleeping arrangements for children. No more than four adults. Rules can change without being written on this site. However, the rules will be acknowledged by parties prior to completing the reservation. Cancellations must be made one week prior to stay for a full refund and three weeks prior on special event pricing nights. Enjoy your stay in beautiful downtown Ocean Springs.

You must also acknowledge the potential for noise – a train runs through the city of Ocean Springs.

This “acknowledgement” about trains running through Ocean Springs is the absolute last thing on this long list of “House Rules” and something that would be more appropriately listed under the “Other Things of Note” section, wouldn’t you think?

If you’ve ever used Airbnb, you will know that when you’re looking for the place, they don’t give you an address. They just provide a circle on a map and the property is somewhere in that circle. We didn’t notice the “acknowledgement” about trains until we were about to pay, but it seemed rather innocuous. I suppose we assumed that if the host had to warn us about noise, the warning had to adequately reflect the noise level. The fact that a train ran “through Ocean Springs” which covers about 12 square miles didn’t seem like the property would be close and based on the description that the property was right across from a city park, it sounded like the property was across from the only city park in that area; that was about as far southeast from the train tracks as you could get.

We booked it. Our job started, as did our reservation, on July 5th. We couldn’t check in until 5:00 PM, and we started work at 7:00 AM, so we didn’t actually get to the property until 4ish, which is when we discovered that the “city park” described in the listing was actually the railroad easement that runs along the tracks. The property was directly adjacent to the easement, separated only by a residential street, less than 100 feet. Being optimists, we thought, well, surely the trains don’t run at night because the host would have had to disclose that.

At 8:00 PM, the first train came blasting through. The whistle was earsplitting, and the entire property shook. However, we thought 8:00 was manageable. The next one was at 10:30 PM. It woke us both up and I thought maybe that was it. The next one was at 1:30ish. I almost laughed out loud because it was right out of “My Cousin Vinny.” The next one at 3:30 wasn’t even a little bit funny, and the 5:00 AM one would have been fine, since we had to get up anyway, if it hadn’t been for the three prior.

I immediately notified the host (at 5:30 AM) and Airbnb that there was no way we could stay there with the trains. We are working 10 to 12 hour days with heavy equipment, and we would either get hurt or hurt someone else if we weren’t able to get enough sleep. Airbnb sent an automated reply almost immediately assuring me that someone would be reaching “very soon.” I didn’t hear anything from our host until 4:00 that afternoon, and still hadn’t heard from Airbnb.

In the meantime, we were on the job starting at 7:00, and didn’t get off until 5:00, a short day. We were exhausted, but had to return to the property because we had no other place to go. We started looking for another place and actually found one that was available starting the next day. I reached out to that host and they preapproved us, but I was still waiting to hear from Airbnb about our refund. Our host had essentially not responded in any meaningful way so I knew we were in for a fight.

The second night the 8:00 PM train rolled through right on time. Then there was another one at 8:40, then another around 10:30, then another at 2ish. I was so tired I could not make myself get up for the 2:00 AM one, but I did record the 8:00 and 10:30 ones. Here’s the link to the video of the 8:00 PM one, and as you listen, keep in mind that the loudest part of the train has already past by the time I started recording.

I had not heard back from Airbnb by the next morning, so I called. I explained to my case manager that we could not stay one more night because we were exhausted and that was a problem at work. I needed to book something ASAP. She asked me to hold off for a couple of hours so that she could complete my claim and transfer any refund to my next booking. Four hours later, I had not heard from her and we lost the other booking by that time. We had to drive home, exhausted, and would have to drive back again tomorrow, though we have been able to book another place, just not through Airbnb.

Airbnb had nothing for us by the time the case manager got around to trying to transfer our refund. As for the refund, it’s pretty obscure what it would be. She said that the host was refunding half the fee we paid. However, her numbers didn’t add up. Here’s what she said: “As we’ve talked over the phone, I will now process the refund amounting to $3662: $1022 will be from the host, and $2640 will be from the nights not spent in the listing just for us to use the money for another listing that you want to book.”

The problem with her math is that we paid $2,428 for the first month of the reservation. We have not paid for the second month. A refund of $1,022 from Jeffrey amounts to less than half of what we paid. The remainder of the refund appears to be for amounts we haven’t paid yet (and won’t) so that’s not a refund. I was very suspicious of that garbled reference to using the refund “just for us to use the money to another listing that you want to book.”

I have written her back and asked for clarification, but I am already drafting a complaint to file in small claims court in Ocean Springs against this host. If I have to add Airbnb, I will move the case to federal court. The case manager was nice enough and definitely knows how to handle irate customers, but she told me things that were misleading at best, or flat out lies at worst. She told me that she had to negotiate with our host, and if he didn’t agree to refund us, then her hands were tied.

According to Airbnb, they have the final say in resolving all disputes. Since I have objected to this particular resolution, it is unclear if I will receive any kind of refund at all. I guess we’ll find out. At this point, I see no point in using Airbnb except that to rip off both legitimate hosts and guests by hiking up prices as a go between service without offering anything of value except a website. Rather, call a local realtor and check local listings for vacation rentals. Maybe it’s less convenient, but at least you won’t get ripped off. Because we cancelled, we are not even allowed to give a review of the host.

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My Home was Destroyed and Used as an Illegal Airbnb

I own a 5000+ square foot executive home in a gated community in Las Vegas. My tenant illegally rented out my home for up to $750/night. My neighbors reported that on a daily basis limos and party buses would roll up with 15-20 people going in and out of my house daily. My home was subject to bachelor parties, naked pool parties, and even had a rap video filmed inside. Airbnb does not check that “hosts” are authorized to rent out the homes. As a result, my home suffered over $25,000 in damage. When I reported it to Airbnb, they refused to remove it from the site and cancel future reservations. I had to get the police involved and move people out in the middle of the night. The same host is doing this with other unsuspecting homeowners. If anyone files a class action on behalf of property owners, I’m in. How is it that Airbnb does not check to see if a host is legally entitled to rent out someone’s home? Also, when notified, how do they not shut down the listing, as well as their other listings immediately?

Airbnb Hosts Can Cancel Reservations Without Cause

We made reservations with a host in Amsterdam in September 2016, but our host cancelled our reservations in April 2017 without any reason other than Airbnb’s Amsterdam agreement to limit the number of nights hosts can rent out their apartments to 60 days per calendar year. Why would you make reservations ten months in advance, purchase airline tickets and foreign currency with no confirmed lodging in place? That is the question we’re asking Airbnb to answer for us. If any host can cancel your reservations, why even reserve with Airbnb?

Now we are out $2600 for airline tickets because we refuse to settle for lesser accommodations. The ones we booked were listed by a “super host”. A super host listing doesn’t mean anything to us because we no longer trust the Airbnb business model or platform to uphold a confirmed reservation. This was our first time booking through Airbnb and we can honestly say that we will never trust Airbnb or any similar entity that rent out vacation properties in this manner. I’m looking to join a class-action lawsuit with other Airbnb guests that have been inconvenienced for the convenience of an Airbnb host. This practice is not fair or ethical by any means.