Updated: Aug 12
MAKING HOUSE RULES
House rules are the most important barrier between you and a bad guest. House rules that are generic and ambiguous will attract guests who will do harm to your property while properly written house rules will detract bad guests as well as provide reasonable compensation if something does happen.
ANATOMY OF A HOUSE RULE
A house rule must consist of 2 parts: 1) A clear determined rule and 2) A charge associated with that rule.
HAVING A CLEAR RULE
Having a clear determined rule is important; Airbnb will not compensate you of the rule is ambiguous. For example "No Parties" isn't a clear determined rule. The term "Party/Parties" is different for everyone and Airbnb could rule against you if it is not clear. A better option if you wanted to avoid parties would be "No extra guests above 2 person limit". So if there is a party it would be very easy for Airbnb to make the determination if the rules were broken.
CHARGE FOR BREAKING RULE
Adding a charge to the rule is just as important as having a clear rule. If a guest sees the punishment for a rule they will be way less likely to break the rule. Also, it will be easy for Airbnb to give you compensation via the host guarantee. For the example rule of "No parties", even if you could prove there was a party Airbnb will not likely compensate unless there is damage. However, if your rule is "No guests above 2 person limit; $25 charge per person above this limit" it will be easier for Airbnb to compensate you for this.
It goes without saying that you should always have ways to prove the amount of guests to Airbnb. You should have a video camera at the entrance of your Airbnb -- it will pay dividends in the future!
Having a rule that is clear with a charge will prevent bad guests as well as making the rule enforcible. Since I have made these changes in November 2019 as of July 2018 and 400+ guests over 14 properties I have had only one time the place was left a little messy with extra guests which was not a big deal at all.
MY HOUSE RULES
I am an Airbnb Superhost with 1200+ trips. 99.99% of the guests are great ones -- This list of rules is to weed out the bad ones. As long as you treat the place like your own and there are no complaints from the neighbors I am a very laid back host!!
Please note this building has HD Video Surveillance that is checked daily.
1) Shoes – Always take shoes off at the door.
2) Locals - Locals MUST message through “contact host query” before booking or your reservation will be declined. If approved, all locals may be subject to an in-person ID check and if so ineligible for self check-in.
3) Third Party Bookings – Third party corporate bookings are permitted when booking for business. Third party personal bookings (when booking for a friend/family) MUST be requested first through “contact host query” before booking with the exception of husband/wife OR parent/child booking for each other. If this process is not followed, the host can cancel the reservation without notice or compensation.
4) Guests with no reviews may be subject to an in-person ID check and may not be eligible for self check-in depending on the discretion of the host.
5) Obey local laws and condo bylaws (if applicable).
6) Noise – Quiet Time is 10PM. Noise Fines as per bylaws are the following: 1st violation - WARNING, 2nd violation - $200 Fine, 3rd violation - $500 Fine.
7) Unauthorized Occupancy – The maximum number of guests in the unit is whatever you have booked for. If more people are in the unit without prior permission a $25/person per day will be assessed to the guest. I am okay with visitors given permission is asked before. There is a $200 unauthorized pet fee if permission is not granted before.
8) No Smoking Rule/Cigarette Butts – No smoking within the unit/building/garage/parkade. Smoking is permitted on the balcony provided proper disposal of cigarette butts – Flicking cigarette butts is a serious fire hazard and will not be tolerated. Fines are as follows: Smoking in Unit/Building/Garage/Parkade - $250, Improper disposal of butts: $150
9) Illegal Activity/Intentional Damage – The reservation will be cancelled with NO WARNING and NO COMPENSATION if the guest OR anyone in the guest’s party is seen or is reasonably assumed to be conducting any kind of illegal activity OR intentional damage inside the unit or around the building premises. If the host has a reasonable suspicion that illegal activity or intentional damage has occurred, he, an agent of his choosing, or the police can enter the premises to investigate without the guests consent given a written notice at least 5 minutes before entering via the Airbnb messaging app.
***Post Trip Rules***
10) Late Checkout – A fee of $40 will be assessed if there is a late checkout. Late checkout is defined as the cleaner having to wait for the guest to leave the unit when present at the building. This is to compensate the cleaner for waiting. You may ask for more time the day before to prevent this from happening.
11) Lost Item Charges • Key Fob: $100 • Key: $25
Any rule violation is subject to a visit and inspection by the host. The host will give a 5-minute notice to enter the premises via Airbnb app. After a rule violation, the host will first try to remedy the solution but if no remedy can be found or it was a significant rule violation the host may cancel the reservation with no notice for any reason without any refund.
Any emergency situation the host can enter the unit with no notice. The host will try to give notice but sometimes it is not attainable. These situations include: fire, water flood, life saving measures, etc.