It is becoming an all too replayed trope to hear of New Year’s Eve parties at Airbnb home rentals that turn into disasters. For both party hosts and property owners alike (not to mention neighbors), here is a rundown of what can go wrong, what steps Airbnb has taken to prevent nightmare scenarios, and what you can do to be a better guest.
New Year’s Eve-Turned Inferno: Airbnb Horror Stories
When it comes to what can go wrong at a New Year’s Eve party, one need only employ an active imagination, and even the most creative mind won’t be able to think up all that has gone wrong at Airbnb locations in just the last few years.
Recent Airbnb New Year’s Eve shenanigans have included:
- An 18th birthday gathering at an Airbnb rental turning into a 200-person party
- Destruction of furniture and appliances
- Smashed TVs
- Apartment and house fires, sometimes constituting a total loss
- Police raids on Airbnb-rental parties involving massive drug seizures
- Airbnb properties being used as the sites of illegal human trafficking
- Circus animals brought to Airbnb NYE parties and destroying property and wreaking general havoc
You can see more horror stories about Airbnb renters finding their homes turned into disaster zones on New Years’ here, but reader beware!
What Airbnb is Doing to Curb Disasters
In response to a rise in parties going off the rails and resulting in serious injuries and property damage, not to mention the increased risks associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, Airbnb took a number of steps towards the end of 2020 in an attempt to mitigate some of the most serious problems.
One major change was to prevent guests without positive reviews from booking one night stays on Halloween and New Year’s Eve in order to crack down on party-purposed rentals.
Another addendum to this is the requirement that even guests with positive reviews sign online forms attesting that they will not host parties, under the threat of Airbnb taking legal action against them.
A global party ban also put in restrictions for the first time to cap guest stays at 16 to both reduce party damage risk and drop the prevalence of infections. You can read the full policy changes here.
How To Be a Better Guest
For all that Airbnb may be doing at the policy level to reduce the risk of both super-spreader events during the pandemic and potentially catastrophic parties more generally, all of us as guests can do our part as well.
If you are renting an apartment and plan on throwing a party, it is your responsibility to monitor the fun such that nothing gets burned down and the property isn’t destroyed. If you know that a particularly rowdy guest will be there, talk to them beforehand about drinking limits or set up an alternative venue outdoors for them to get up to their nonsense. Pro tip: you can also just not invite them.
Part of hosting a non-disastrous NYE party involves really being mindful of who you are inviting. Know exactly who is committed to coming first so that you don’t overdo it on the invitations without knowing how many are actually going to show up. Many massive party nightmares start when the host invites a hundred people thinking that only 20 will show up, and then, surprise surprise, there are 200 people there by midnight.
Individuals injured at an Airbnb property do have legal recourse. The options that one has when it comes to filing suit are going to be entirely dependent on the circumstances as well as the state that the property is located in (not the state of the injured party’s residence).
Airbnb property owners also have legal recourse when their home becomes trashed beyond belief at New Year’s Eve parties or any other time. It all depends on circumstances and location. For more information, it is best to get in touch with a qualified attorney who can assess your situation and offer guidance. [Source: https://www.johnfoy.com/areas-we-serve/georgia/slip-and-fall-accident-lawyer/]