Imagine owning a home and someone shows up at your door after saying they rented your place on Airbnb. That is the scenario one woman could have found herself in if she didn’t come across her own home online. Sadly, it’s only one of several Airbnb horror stories that have recently made the rounds on social media.
Dr. Shireen Heidari took to Twitter to ask Airbnb to remove an account posing as the host of her home.
Hi @Airbnb – I would really appreciate you contacting me. Someone has listed my home as their rental, and when I messaged them asking them to take it down, they offered option to book my own home. We reported it, but the listing is still active. This is not ok.— Shireen Heidari, MD (@ShireenNHeidari) March 15, 2022
She only found out because of a notice sent from the city.
“The city mailed letters to previous owners at our address about needing to report rental taxes,” she replied in her Twitter comments. “[I] Called the city and [the] employee shared Airbnb listing links that prompted letters. Grateful, they caught it. Otherwise, we might have found out by people showing up at our home.”
Since posting, hundreds of others replied with some pretty wild– yet eerily similar Airbnb horror stories. Here’s just a snippet.
1. House Showing Up Other Places
One user said he checks other platforms regularly because he found his home listed on other sites.
2. Showing Up On The Doorstep
In a different scenario on Craigslist, the guest didn’t know they were scammed until showing up at the home.
3. Fraudulent Listing Caught Before Trip
Someone booked a home on Airbnb only to later have it canceled because, as it turns out, the listing was not real.
4. Getting Emails About Nonexistent Account
In another post, Twitter users said they are getting emails about hosting accounts that they never set up on Airbnb.
5. Booking A Place With An Eviction Notice
What would you do if you were renting out a place on Airbnb and the host receives an eviction letter during your stay?
6. Turning Guests Down
One woman had to turn guests away because her apartment was listed, and she wasn’t aware.
7. Knocking On A Stranger's Door
One of the scariest stories is from a person who knocked on the door of a home she thought she rented on Airbnb.
8. Utilities Cut Mid-Stay
Then, there are the people out who don’t have their affairs in order and still rent out their homes. One woman replied that the utilities were cut off mid-stay.
9. How Did Airbnb Respond?
According to Dr. Heidari, Airbnb responded and helped to get her home off the platform.
“Appreciate the support, all. After this tweet, another call to customer service, and a DM from Airbnb, the listing has been removed. Want to recognize the customer service rep on the phone who stuck with me at 11 pm to sort this and called back to let me know it was removed.”