The Airbnb host charged an extra cleaning fee after the Airbnb guest left. Can they do that? There is a cleaning fee collected at the time of the #VRBO or #Airbnb booking.
Angela Brown, The House Cleaning Guru says if the Airbnb host charged an extra cleaning fee it’s valid.
If the housekeeper or maid service has extra work, or if they have to call in a pest control service there will be an extra cleaning charge.
If the Airbnb host charged an extra cleaning fee it’s for cleaning. It’s not a damage deposit or part of the nightly rate, or standard amenities. It’s all in your vacation rental contract.
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Airbnb Host Charged an Extra Cleaning Fee – Can They Do That?
The Airbnb host charged a hundred dollars more for cleaning after I left. Can they do that?
That’s a great question, and we’re going to talk about that today.
Hi, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is the show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.
Airbnb Host Charged an Extra Cleaning Fee – WHAT?
Okay, on to today’s show, which is from an angry guest. After they left an Airbnb, they got a surprise charge. They’d all already paid their cleaning fee, they paid their damaged deposit, they paid the nightly fee, they paid for everything. Then they get a bill for an extra hundred dollars, and they are livid, and they want to know, is that possible?
Can that happen and is it legal?
The answer is, yes it can, and here is the reason why. When you rent an Airbnb or a VRBO, you sign a contract. It states you will follow the house rules. And by booking the listing you agree to the terms. If you refuse to pay the fees you agree to you are in breach of contract.
So, when you say there are two people, and you enter those two people’s information, what you’re saying is, there will be two people in this place.
Airbnb Host Charged an Extra Cleaning Fee for Extra Cleaning
Now, I don’t know why, but there are a lot of people that think, “Well, I’ve rented the whole place, so I might as well invite all my friends over.”
That is not part of the contract. As it turns out, you are in someone else’s home.
How would you like it if two people were planning to come to your home? You’d done a thorough background check. And you’ve checked out these people’s social media profiles. And you had their information, and you knew who was going to be in your home?
Then suddenly eight, 12, 15 people showed up that you didn’t know, and they came and they hung out in your space.
Extra Cleaning Fees Come from Messy Extra Guests
Then let’s say something malfunctioned and the place gets trashed, who’s going to take responsibility for it? Is it going to be the two people that are on record, or is it all these other people that we don’t know about?
Now, Airbnb hosts, for the most part, have a camera doorbell. So, when you ring the doorbell and people come in through the door, they can see who is entering the house.
If you have a contract for two people, and eight people show up, you have more beds used. More linens to wash. More foodstuffs, and more garbage to clean up. And this often requires more cleaning.
Cleaning Companies Charge an Extra Cleaning Fee for More Time
My guess is that the cleaning company came in to clean and do the turnover service, there was a lot more than what they were expecting for two people. I don’t know if your vacation reservation was two people, or four people, or five people. I’m just using this as an example.
But when they came in, they were like, “Whoa, this is going to take an extra two hours to clean. I’m going to have to increase my Airbnb cleaning fees.” Now, a lot of people are slobs and they just leave stuff everywhere.
So, they may have gone to the grocery and they bought some things, and they’re half eaten, and they left food half open on the counter. Maybe now there are bugs or maggots or who knows what, ants. If a house cleaner comes in and there are ants all over the cupboard, they have to treat the house for bugs.
Pest Control Services Can Trigger an Extra Cleaning Fee
Because an Airbnb is a commercial place rented to the public, there are different rules and regulations.
They may be required by law to bring in a pest control service to sweep the house and that costs extra money. I don’t know in this particular case what it was that triggered it, but there are things they have to do. Another hundred dollars, yeah, it’s possible.
Have a Conversation with the Host or Superhost
What you may want to do is, have a conversation with the host, because every host welcomes a conversation from the guests.
Like, “Oh my goodness, here’s what happened.” Then share with them and be honest with them about what happened. Maybe they can waive the fee. Maybe they can reduce the fee.
Or it’s possible they will say, “Listen, it was actually three hundred dollars. Because we had to have the pest control service come in, it cost more but we’re only charging you an extra hundred.”
They might already be cutting you a deal, but it’s good to know and have a conversation with them so that you know for future reference.
Because if you pull the same shenanigan at the next Airbnb that you stay at, you’re going to start getting bad ratings and reviews.
Hosts Can Leave Bad Ratings for Guests
If you don’t pay the bill, you’re going to get a bad rating and review from the host. Then when you go to stay at an Airbnb, and this goes from here through eternity, right?
Don’t get blacklisted from short-term rentals because you refuse to pay for services you incurred.
Have a conversation with the host and say, “Hey, I didn’t know. I screwed up. I’m really sorry. How do we make this right?”
The worst-case scenario, they go, “Give us a hundred dollars and you’re good to go.” But yes, they can charge an extra cleaning fee.
Extra Cleaning Charge Won’t Happen till You Leave
Hosts can charge extra money, even after you leave because they are not going to know what the place looks like until the cleaning crew comes in. The housekeeper takes a bunch of pictures and documents what they see. This may not be a damage issue. If it was a damage issue, you would be getting a damage claim, but it’s a cleaning fee.
I don’t think the host wants to just eek more money out of you for no reason. Because the host’s name and reputation are on the line, and if they pull shenanigans like this, they wouldn’t be in business long either.
Have a conversation with them. Figure out whatever it is that you screwed up on, and then don’t ever do that again, because it just cost you an extra hundred dollars.
*** RESOURCES FROM THIS EPISODE ***
Airbnb Listing Hacks – The Complete Guide to Maximizing Your Bookings and Profits – https://amzn.to/2uYSL1E
Get Paid for Your Pad: How to Maximize Profit from Your Airbnb Listing – https://amzn.to/2Lxkf8U
The Airbnb Expert’s Playbook: Secrets to Making Six-Figures as a Rentalpreneur – https://amzn.to/2LyzYVm
Make Money on Airbnb: How to Quickly and Easily Earn $2,500 A Month from Your Home – https://amzn.to/2mTogWx
Optimize YOUR Airbnb: The Definitive Guide to Ranking #1 in Airbnb Search – https://amzn.to/2Alzv3D
Smarter hosting: How to wow guests, save time and make more money through Airbnb – https://amzn.to/2Aw7dUf
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