We took our lock-off apartment off of Airbnb. We’re not putting it back. I’m sick of being part of the slave and surveillance economy. After 2 years, we think Airbnb sucks. Here’s why.
Here’s a few pics of our apartment and our ‘hood.
As you can see, it’s sweet. Like, Ritz Carlton sweet. In fact it’s better than the Ritz. Its got everything needed to cook 5 course meals. Its got a kick ass Audio/Video system. It’s so nice here, I’m still convincing myself I live here.
We put the apartment on Airbnb because we thought it’d be cool to share with others while making some rent money. Turn people onto a super cool place.
Most, at least 9 out of 10 we rented to on Airbnb were robots and worse. All they were looking for was a cheap place to stay. For sure, it wasn’t all bad. There were a couple months we made about $3k a month. A few were genuinely cool who left us with fond memories.
But the rest? Let’s just say the experiences we had all but wiped out the good vibes we got from the cool people.
Before I go on, I never cared for Airbnb.
I didn’t believe that if something went wrong — damages or theft — that Airbnb would cover us. I got extra insurance just in case. I still don’t believe they would have. We know someone who rented their place on Airbnb and the guests trashed it — cost them $5k in property and damages. Airbnb didn’t pay. There’s stories on Airbnb forums of Hosts who lost property and worse, Airbnb didn’t pay. We had one guest who trashed our place. Airbnb didn’t do anything.
I hated that we had to suck up to the guests to get good ratings, and, that the ratings could be personal. BTW. The key to getting a good rating on Airbnb is either to bribe the guest — give them a bottle of wine or some weed @ check-in, or, make your place super cheap. Works every time.
Here’s just a few nightmares we went through with Airbnb people.
- The guests who posted fake profile pictures, who were teenagers. Yep, we had two teenagers rent the place for a weekend. The kid who rented used a fake picture. Then, they didn’t have a car. They called me and said “We’re at the bus stop in Edwards. We didn’t realize your place was so far. Can you come pick us up”? Because I was worried about getting a good rating, and we were great Hosts — we were Superhosts — I picked them up. They trashed the place. It took Renee all day to clean up after them. I sent pictures to Airbnb, Airbnb did nothing about it. I would have kicked them out when I met them, but I was afraid of the shitty review we’d have got from them.
- The two lawyers from Los Angeles who left us a half smoked roach and a half empty bottle of wine as a “tip”. We don’t smoke or drink.
- The numerous guests who’d book the place, then cancel a day or two before their scheduled arrival, then ask for their money back — even though in our listing it was clear we didn’t offer refunds with 7 days of booking.
- The guy from Utah who’d meet his girlfriend here, live it up all weekend, then go back to Utah. His girlfriend lived here in town. She was much younger. He looked married.
- The dork from Los Angeles who moved all the furniture around and didn’t do his dishes. When I asked him why he said, “I pay you to clean up after me”. Everyone who stayed was expected to clean up after themselves and leave the place as they found it – it was in our listing. The cleaning fee is to cover the costs to vacuum, change the sheets and what not. He expected us to be his slaves. What a fuck head.
- All the people who left their dirty dishes — didn’t even bother to rinse their food off their plates.
- The couple from Crested Butte who complained that “the blinds needed a good dusting”. They complained about the scented candles Renee used. The blinds were clean. We live in the mountains, dust happens.
- All the guests who bitched about our dogs. Even though in our listing I went out of my way to tell people that if you don’t like big dogs who bark, don’t rent our place.
- Just about no one would recycle properly. They’d put half eaten pizza boxes in recycling. No wonder our planet is breaking at the seams – people can’t even recycle.
- All the guests who bitched our doggie fees — even though we listed that we charge extra if guests have dogs. So they wanted a cheap place to stay, and, they wanted us to clean up after their dogs.
- The robot like personalities of most guests. At first, I’d go out of my way to knock on the apartment door and say hello. Most greeted me with a blank stare. They had the personality of a laboratory rat. The last few months I gave up saying hello. Our ratings went up.
- The guest who wiped out the Sonos system. I spent 3 hours getting the system back online. They knew they wiped it out, they didn’t care.
- The guest who unplugged the Nest Protect, didn’t bother to plug it back in when they left.
After renting our place on Airbnb, living the experience, I agree with the critics of Airbnb who say that Airbnb is responsible for rents going up. I see it first hand up here. We live in a resort community — skiing. People who work for ski areas need a place to rent. But if everyone is renting their place on Airbnb, there’s fewer rentals for lift operators, ski instructors, and workers. If there’s fewer places to rent, rent goes up. It’s happened here. Rents are really high up here and Airbnb is a big reason why.
Airbnb wants hosts to believe that people who rent on Airbnb are looking for a “locals experience”. They imply that Airbnb guests are discerning and a cut above. Most everyone who rented from us was looking for one thing and only one thing — a place to crash that’s cheaper than a hotel room. The last few months we couldn’t rent the apartment for what it’s worth. When I set the price to just $95 bucks a night, we got no bookings. When I lowered the price to $75 a night, renting for a loss, we got bookings.
The last year or so, we felt like we were slaves to Airbnb. Strangers staying here who valued quality, who were nice, was worth the effort. Strangers who only cared about price, wasn’t. I worried about damages and theft. I hated Airbnb’s rating system, which boils down to surveillance.
What’s not written here is we were an Airbnb Superhost. We had outstanding ratings and reviews on Airbnb. We were what Airbnb should be.
We’re glad to be done with Airbnb. In the long run, it wasn’t worth it. The nice people are great, but they’re the exception. Most guests were robots, more than some were shit heads who left a really bad taste in your mouth – when they were gone we felt like we’d been had. Most of all, I’m glad to not be supporting the slave/surveillance economy. Fuck that.