Airbnb hosts benefit from the stay boom

In August 2020, Airbnb banned parties globally. Last month, it was announced that the ban would remain in effect until the end of summer 2021. In a statement, the company said: “We will continue to implement our many systems to help prevent unauthorized parties… This includes our neighborhood hotline, which provides a forum for neighbors to report problems or concerns. ‘

Under Airbnb’s terms, the company can also provide up to $ 1 million in property damage protection, in the event of damage to premises or property. However, superhost Jim says he found Airbnb’s insurance process “a nightmare.” “It is designed not to work,” he said. “It’s not user-friendly at all. “

“You have to read between the lines,” argues Sue Ryan, who has welcomed guests to her annex for four years. This involves not only looking at reviews of their previous visits, but also the reason they give for wanting to stay. “If they’re booking for six adults and don’t state a reason – to attend a wedding, for example – it’s possible they’re having a party.”

Since her bad experience Louise Lowe has put procedures in place and now asks customers to provide photo ID, sign a contract online, and ensure the security deposit is paid on a card that matches the name of the reservation. It also no longer accepts bookings for overnight stays or for those under the age of 21. “We also explain that we have a video doorbell and CCTV outside, so we can see anyone coming and going… If the guests are trying to hide under the camera or cover their faces, we know that we have problems.

‘[The procedures are] frustrating and time consuming… but it has to be done. ‘

Profit versus risk

So, considering the risks, is it still worth it? Naomi Clark, 33, who started renting out her jewelry one-bedroom apartment in trendy Hoxton east London six years ago to help fund her postgraduate studies, insists the fact that it is. “It did more for me than just paying my bills. It gave me the chance to travel and live in a more minimalist and sustainable way, ”she says. “Maybe I’m lucky, but I didn’t have a bad reservation and most of the guests were great, leaving me thank you cards and even gifts like chocolates or flowers.”

And Eleanor *, who lives in an upscale suburb of Essex with her husband and two-year-old son, says long-term Airbnb guests, who stay in the one-bedroom independent annex in the garden of her home family, were a cut above guests found elsewhere. One of them, who made the reservation on a competing website, stopped paying his rent shortly after moving in, texted aggressively and, after being finally evicted, left the place in disorder. “There were needles behind the stove and evidence of drug use everywhere,” Eleanor recalls.

“We felt violated and spent a fortune to renovate it. But Airbnb guests have given us confidence. One was looking for a stopgap while finalizing a divorce, another was stuck here because he planned to emigrate when the lockdown hit, and they are genuine and lovely people, and the money we made m ‘allowed to have a second year of maternity leave.’

Georgia, however, was too burnt to ever try again. “Friends have had positive Airbnb experiences so I think we were unlucky and also naive in allowing a family with young children to stay [without] remove all our personal or valuables.

“I wouldn’t take that risk again, although we were recently able to swap a vacation home with another family we know and trust – they left our home as spotless as we left it for them. “

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