Thousands of hosts use Airbnb every year and almost all bookings mean more earnings for hosts. Unfortunately, some stays don’t work out due to problems with the guests, hosts or the property itself, which causes hosts to lose money. Fortunately, the majority of disagreements can be diffused if you know how to handle them in advance.
Here are 10 common Airbnb problems and how to solve them.
You’ve got a new reservation and you’re ready to earn some money. But it looks like things are not going to go as smoothly as you had hoped. Here’s what to do about the Airbnb problems before your guests even arrive.
Sometimes your guests want to arrive earlier or leave later. No matter what the situation is, the chances are high that it doesn’t work for you. The best way to nip this Airbnb problem in the bud is to let your guests know what sort of time changes you’ll accept right on your listing.
Let your guests know that you can’t accept check-in/check-out time changes or give them a maximum number of hours before or after their stays that they can change their check-in and check-out times too. If you already mentioned it in your listing but the guest ignores it, simply decline the changes in a polite manner. In most cases, the guest will drop the issue and agree to your rules. However, if you can allow early check-in or check-out lossless, do that and make your guests happy!
Sometimes you just get a feeling that things are going to be bad before your guest even arrives. Maybe they are making too many requests or you’re worried that they might be coming to party at your place and break things. Whatever the reason, you know that you want them to cancel their reservation.
To cancel a reservation, just go to Your Reservations and select Cancel to start the cancellation process. However, you should be aware of the fact that Airbnb does impose penalties for cancellations given it can have serious implications on your guest’s trip. Think carefully about whether or not the cancellation is really necessary first.
If the reason why you want to cancel the reservation isn’t about the guest but is actually because there is some problem on your end, this situation can work out in your favor without you being charged penalties if you contact Airbnb support to let them know that you’d like to cancel the reservation due to extenuating circumstances.
You’re happy to get a new booking but then at the last minute, your guest says that they need to cancel. Instead of getting mad about the lost revenue after the fact, avoid it by having a strict cancellation policy. Many hosts state that it doesn’t really decrease your booking rate to have a strict cancellation policy.
Your guests have arrived but now things are starting to go south. Here’s how to solve the most common Airbnb problems during the stay.
The shower is broken, there’s no heat or the garage door won’t close. Whatever the issue, you need to let your guest know that you are going to deal with the problem right away. Make sure to say sorry first and then move on to fixing it.
You should also tell your guests to call you that same moment if anything happens during their stay so that you will not be left with a bad surprise after they leave. After all, you don’t want to find out that the toilet has overflowed two days after your guests have already left!
Another Airbnb problem that hosts run into is guests who complain about noise from the neighbors. Although it is not directly your fault, you still are responsible for your guests’ experience.
Call the neighbors and tell them to keep it down. If noise is a recurring problem, you might want to rethink renting your property on Airbnb because the noise problem could put you in violation of Airbnb’s terms if guests are complaining regularly.
If your property rental is in a tourist hotspot, you can expect that at least some of your guests will be looking to party. While you probably already taking as many precautions as possible to keep the boozers out of your place, partying guests is one of the most common Airbnb problems.
If you find that your guests are turning your place into a frat house, you should get them out as soon as possible. Cancel the booking and make sure that you document everything that is occurring in case you have to get the police or Airbnb involved.
If the problem is less serious, you can try letting them know that your neighborhood is a family-friendly neighborhood and they have to keep the noise down. However, if this approach doesn’t work after one attempt, it’s time for them to go.
Why can’t we all just get along? If your guests are already staying at your place and they are no longer getting along, what can you do?
First, don’t take someone’s side, talk to each guest and try to come to some compromise. If you don’t like your guests or they don’t like you, that can happen, stay nice and polite, that’s just Airbnb business.
You also don’t have to continue to overextend yourself as if the guest were a friend. Just limit your communication. If the guest does something inappropriate, that’s when you may ask him to leave your property. However, you should avoid canceling the booking if you can resolve the problem without doing that. Some guests tend to have issues with pets, so make sure to mention that you have a pet in the listing and house rules. If your property is pet-friendly it is also worthy of mention in the listing.
Your guest is gone and now you’re finding out a bad secret. Here’s how to fix Airbnb problems after your guests leave.
Your towels, toilet paper, and playing cards have all gone missing. First, ask carefully and politely something like “Have you seen playing cards? Do you know where I can find them?” Or “Sorry, can’t find the towels. Where did you leave them?” Look everywhere before you make any accusations.
If you’re pretty sure that it’s not going to be found, you can easily charge them for the missing expensive items. If the item is not of a high value you might want to mention it to guests without charging them. This is probably the best option if you want to save your time and nerves. To avoid having valuables or extra supplies go missing, put locks on your storage places.
Unfortunately, some guests leave bad reviews. A good-hearted “sorry” can always do the trick but if it doesn’t stay calm and tell your side of the story as a response. Respond to all the reviews politely. This will show your future guests that you are a caring and respectful Airbnb host.
For smaller, simpler accidents–like a broken glass–a security deposit can be useful for hosts. However, you may want to consider independent insurance to cover valuable items like jewelry, artwork, or collectibles which cost more than the amount you’ve retained as a security fee.
Make sure you do everything to prevent these unpleasant situations from happening on your end. But even if something goes wrong, the best advice is to keep calm and be a responsible host.