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AirBNB is unreasonable to hosts

Discussion in 'Buying, Selling & Renting Timeshares' started by A.Win, Feb 16, 2019.

  1. A.Win

    A.Win TUG Member

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    I wanted to share my nightmare experience with AirBNB as a host and get your thoughts on the situation. What would you do?

    To AirBNB, I completely disagree with your response to the guest's complaint. The guest checked in Friday. On Saturday, they complained about bed bugs, so the resort kindly provided another unit for Sat. night. On Sunday at 3:10 PM they finally check out. At 6:43 PM, they inform me that BOTH units had bed bugs. What are the chances of TWO units having bed bugs? Why did the guests enjoy the unit until 3:10 PM? My guess is they checked out a few hours early only because the evening forecast was snow and freezing rain. Or perhaps they had to work on Monday and never planned to stay over Sunday. The checkout time is 10 AM, but the guest checked out at 3:10 PM. So technically the guests used all 3 days of the reservation (Friday, Saturday, and part of Sunday).

    If they checked out early, they may be entitled to a refund. Let me repeat that it is extremely unlikely for TWO units to have bed bug problems. This is like eating your entire steak and then complaining that you want a refund because you did not like the taste. AirBNB forced me to refund 2 out of 3 nights.

    AirBNB also insisted that I have the unit inspected. I explained that this is a timeshare unit and that it is not MY unit to control. So they removed my listing even though I explained this to them. This is completely ridiculous but it is not a big deal as they also allow hosts to create new listings at any time.

    Finally, the guests have 0 feedback. I have hosted hundreds of guests the past few years in my homes and in my timeshares. I am a "Super Host" yet AirBNB treats me poorly.

    As a host, I also seem to have problems with a certain demographic group. I aim to treat everyone equally, but experienced hosts know which groups cause more problems. I started by accepting nearly anybody, but I am now careful and ask guests more questions to clarify their intentions.
     
  2. vacationhopeful

    vacationhopeful TUG Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I was disqualified as a host as I was trying to RENT my fixed deeded timeshare units.

    Unless that policy changed, THAT might be why they "sank your ship".

    As for Bedbugs ... those critters do NOT stay in just one place. The resorts cleaning staff can carry them on their shoes, clothing, vaccums, dusting tools, etc. They can LIVE for over a year without a food source.

    And as a Landlord for 25+ years, I have had units with bedbugs .. rather deal with 100+ issues for roaches than 1 bedbug issue.

    And as for vacation homes ... I don't rent my place out anymore.
     
    Snazzylass and TravelTime like this.
  3. Theiggy

    Theiggy TUG Member

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    What place were you renting? Can the resort itself confirm whether their were indeed bedbugs?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  4. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Elite TUG Member

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    I encountered bedbugs once at a very nice timeshare. I immediately took a picture as proof. I would call the timeshare and let them know of the bedbug complaint and ask if true. At minimum they need to inspect because of the claim. If inspection proves false you can ask for the report and forward AIrBNB. Not sure worth the aggrevation.
     
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  5. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    If it wasn't a place I was personally managing, meaning I was onsite and could see the problems, I wouldn't make a decision as to where the bedbugs were, or weren't.
     
  6. T-Dot-Traveller

    T-Dot-Traveller TUG Member

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    Let the seller / buyer be-aware .

    As TUG members know - the biggest issue with timeshares is sales & initial (developer)cost
    Occasionally a property can have unit quality or cleaning issues .

    “ no one “ steals 3 days at a timeshare / perhaps (occasionally) towels disappear .

    AirBNB is essentially a contractual virtual RETAILER / of short term rentals .

    All retailers have “shrinkage “ (ie) inventory that walked out the door without payment or
    “returns” that were used and then given back for full credit even though there was lipstick on the collar .

    The “renter” in this case - did the lipstick on the collar scam .
    and the RETAILER - AirBNB reverses most of their payment to you .

    If you are operating any RETAIL business - there is “shrinkage “
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
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  7. Railman83

    Railman83 TUG Member

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    I have heard this on many forums, particularly that the guest is always right and favored over the owner.

    My favorite is a guest complains that a perfectly good hot tub was broken and emails a picture to prove it from some random broken hot tub that bore no resemblance to the one in the rental. The owner sent pictures of the actual hot tub to Air bnb to no avail, they still refunded money.

    I had to dump vrbo after they became ever more intrusive and fees increased. All of these sites treat owners as a disposable commodity when they get big. They are suffering for it as owners outmigrate to other options, but are temporarily making 3-4 times off individual owners that remain. At some point they will run so many off that the increased rev per owner can’t makevit up.

    There are up and coming smaller sites that use the pure ad model who are carving niches (Florida rental by owner, and that kind of local minor league branding). It is entirely possible that these regional outlets grow to a death of a thousand cuts for the Air bnb and vrbo of the world.
     
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  8. TravelTime

    TravelTime TUG Member

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    I hate AirBnB. I think if your guests stayed for the full 3N and even went over the check out time, this situation sounds unusual. I would talk to the property to see if they have bed bug problems. They need to know what happened to your guests. Which property was this?
     
  9. DeniseM

    DeniseM Moderator

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    This is one of the many reasons that I don't use Air BnB and the other similar websites. They have too much control over the process, their business model is not conducive to timeshare rentals, and they are expensive.
     
  10. davidvel

    davidvel TUG Member

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    It sounded from the OP's post that the tenants were relocated. It is less clear if the resort confirmed there were bedbugs (not sure they would), or just relocated to make them happy (which they might say anyway).

    If a resort has bedbugs in a room, it would not be a stretch that they would be in more than one room. But we don't know either way.
     
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  11. TravelTime

    TravelTime TUG Member

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    I agree.
     
  12. TravelTime

    TravelTime TUG Member

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    Yes, I am curious at what resort this happened.
     
  13. bizaro86

    bizaro86 TUG Member

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    If a resort has bedbugs in one room, and they move the guests and their stuff to another room, there is a non-zero chance the bedbugs go with the bags to the new room.
     
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  14. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Elite TUG Member

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    If they didn’t take precautions they could have been carried to the new room.

    There is also a chance the renters are actually the ones who brought them in not knowing. I was told this happens many times.

    I was at a resort once that a bedbug came out and it bit my other half during the day. Management immediately came up, inspected it, confirmed it, flipped the mattresses immediately and saw no others, looked at our luggage.

    They moved us to another room, could not take our stuff, they cleaned a set of clothes for us to make sure we had something to wear in the morning, our bodies and clothing we had on us were inspected. The timeshare resort was trained by the management company what to do. Pest control company came inspected the room, felt they were brought in within the last two weeks, tented, heated everything. I was told it happened once before about two years prior.

    I was all freaked out, called my home pest control company where I have a budbeg policy and he told me to calm down that I was lucky to find out. He told me sometimes in the beginning stages even if you inspect it probably won’t be seen. Told me many incidents of people taking them home are not from resorts but from restaurants, theaters, trains, basically any place.
     
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  15. A.Win

    A.Win TUG Member

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    The resort's maintenance crew confirmed that there were bed bugs the first night in the first unit only. Their notes do not say anything about the 2nd unit, so I can only assume that the guests made that part up in their attempts to get a full refund. They also hassled the resort and received a $100+ benefit. I do not wish to name the resort because I don't think they have a bed bug problem (at least not more than any other place). I think they handled the situation properly. It is unknown if the guests brought in the bed bugs.

    If this was a reputable guest with lots of feedback I would believe them. However, these guests had no feedback and they fall in the demographic group that sometimes causes me problems.

    I have another example of AirBNB treating hosts poorly. One of my guests planned a party with about 30 people, and I approved it. However, the actual party was just insane. Maybe 80 people with 40 cars all over the neighborhood. Loud music, lots of drugs and alcohol, etc. AirBNB listened to the guest and basically ignored me. Once again, I have extensive positive feedback and the guest did not. Miraculously, my neighbors did not complain, and I survived the incident.
     
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  16. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Sounds like you may not want to use Air BNB to rent out units any longer.
     
  17. WVBaker

    WVBaker TUG Member

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    I suppose I'm in the minority but, I've rented out my units through Airbnb and have had nothing but good results. :ponder:
     
  18. T-Dot-Traveller

    T-Dot-Traveller TUG Member

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    I think “ good results “ is generally how most rentals work out / regardless of the platform .

    BUT - for every 1000 rentals ; I am sure xx% have an issue - property - rentor - rentee .

    If you are the party doing the renting I think you need to :
    “ not spend all the chickens before they hatch “ - so to speak .
     
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  19. WVBaker

    WVBaker TUG Member

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    For me, their platform works fine and as for the commission charged, I have no issues. I find it a small price to pay for the advertising, handling and exchange of funds.
     
  20. vacationhopeful

    vacationhopeful TUG Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    My avatar is a picture of a vacation home I built in 1977. I inquired several years ago about AirB&B ... but being 140+ miles from the place, I would have had to use a 'local' to clean the place and report damages. They 'located' a cleaner who would 'report' damages, etc.

    I decided I really did NOT want the cost & pain of 'redoing' the place AGAIN from the studs inward ... the 20year mortgage with paid off long ago. There is no assocation fee or services. It is a 2bdr/1bath 100 feet off the road in the woods with few neighbors.

    It is nice to know my beds are made, the bath is clean and everything works when I unlock the door on arrival. No surprises. Nothing missing or broken. Home has a washer/dryer plus a wood burning fireplace.

    Just have to pay the yearly property taxes (under $150 monthly), budgetted electric bill of $108 monthly and homeowner's property insurance.

    If any Tugger is spending a weekend near Camelback Ski area ... PM the dates a week in advance for a meet & greet. My place is located on the next ridge behind Camelback (as if the wind is blowing from the north and Camelback is making snow, some flakes lands on my deck).
     
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  21. T_R_Oglodyte

    T_R_Oglodyte TUG Lifetime Member

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    We have started using AirBnB and VRBO frequently for our travel. If those options had existed when we first became interested in timeshare, I don't think we would have ever bought timeshare in the first place.

    When we first started looking into this, to rent a condo in Hawaii for a week, both owners and renters had to contact a vacation rental agency in Hawaii. As an owner, that was the only way you could realistically get your unit onto the market for renters to find, since you couldn't realistically advertise in newspapers in all of the areas where owners might reside. As a renter, there wasn't any effective means of scoping out available inventory. You might find an individual unit here or there, but what you would get was hit and miss.

    Under that model, the property took a significant cut of the proceeds for managing the property, and that added greatly to the cost of the rental. I have a sister who used to own a condo in Big Sky that they rented out, and the agency took 50% of the proceeds. Most years they broke even. Some years, the net proceeds they received were less than the costs they incurred. The only ones who consistently made money were the rental agencies.

    On the renter side, the costs were so large that when I looked at timeshare, that was clearly the best option.

    VRBO and AirBnB completely disrupted that market by creating a venue where owners and renters can connect directly, and with the rental agencies out of the picture rental prices have plummeted - to the point where I can do VRBO and AirBnB for less than the cost of timeshare. They also make it possible for small operators to participate in the rental market.

    One can certainly make complaints about VRBO and AirBnB, but then prior to those operations people also made complaints about the rental agencies that they have replaced.

    ************

    We've talked to our children about whether they are interested in picking up any of our timeshares when we are no longer able to use them. Their very clear response is why should they want to own a timeshare when they can use VRBO and AirBnB.

    ********

    A final comment. One of children has a vacation house that is listed on both VRBO and AirBNb. The child is a SuperHost (or equivalent) at both sites. As an owner, that child finds that AirBnB is vastly more owner friendly than VRBO - specifically in the legal protections provided to the owner in case of property damage caused by a renter or in case of injury to a renter.
     
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  22. T-Dot-Traveller

    T-Dot-Traveller TUG Member

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    Steve -
    Thanks for a well thought out post .
    I only am commenting on a small portion of it .

    Just remember the Yogi Berra quote - “It’s déjà vue all over again “

    It would not surprise me if AirBNB model gets greedy like the old rental agent model and their cut rises in-percentage.

    I would give your children final ROFR on your current timeshares ; before you buy the below ground level timeshare unit . I wish you much success in having an extended RTU on your current ownerships .

    You never know quite how markets will evolve - as Yoggi said .
     
  23. T_R_Oglodyte

    T_R_Oglodyte TUG Lifetime Member

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    Even if the AirBnb/VRBO model increases their cuts, it will still be vastly cheaper than how things existed previously. AirBnB and VRBO have simply upended the vacation rental market by creating a market for owners and renters to contract directly.

    Another seldom-mentioned aspect is that AirBnB and VRBO have made it much easier for independent local entrepreneurs to provide property management and housekeeping services. Think someone who lives in a vacation area but who is a stay-at-home parent with children in school. They just need to connect with three or four VRBO/AirBnB owners who are active renters, and they have a somewhat steady stream of income that matches their situation. And they often provide better service to the owners than those rental agencies used to provide. My child who rents the vacation house has established a direct personal relationship with the family that keeps an eye on their property.

    *******

    By facilitating direct arrangements between owners and renters, AirBnB and VRBO are very similar to what TUG tries to do with direct exchanges - by cutting out the middle man.
     
  24. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I've used Airbnb for my rentals for over 3 years, am a Superhost, and have never had a problem with them. They've always been fair to me and I now generate over half my business on Airbnb.
     
  25. JudyS

    JudyS TUG Member

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    Can you clarify? Does AirBnB have an official policy against timeshare rentals? Or, are you saying that you had the right to rent your timeshare units, but AirBnB thought you were trying to rent units that were obtained from exchange companies?

    I find AirBnB really hard to use. I have rented exactly one timeshare reservation on AirBnB.
     

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