Airbnb house rules are one of the most critical parts of your listing.
When your guest books your listing, they agree to abide by your house rules, and they are binding.
Airbnb House Rules Examples / Samples for Hosts:
- No Un-Registered Guests
- No Locals
- No Parties or Events
- Lost Keys Will Incur a Replacement Fee
- No Changing of Locks
- Follow HOA Rules
- Usage of Utilities
- No Illegal Substances
- Remove Shoes When Inside Home
- No Eating or Drinking in the Bedrooms
- Furniture is Not to Be Re-Arranged
- No Smoking
- Check Out On Time
- Early Check-In or Late Check Out May Be Permitted
- Guest Agrees To Pay for Damages Exceeding Deposit
- Be Kind to Garbage Disposal
- Honor Noise Rules
- Respect Towels & Sheets
- Additional Cleaning is an Extra Charge
- No Pets
- Most Important Rule: Have Fun!
If or when you run into a dispute with a guest, the Airbnb resolution center will refer to your house rules to see if you have a rule that applies to your dispute. You want to make sure your rules are thorough and robust in order to avoid areas of ambiguity, to hopefully cover most items that may arise.
House rules should be very specific, including all legal items and fines related to those rules. Care should be taken to emphasize the rules in a positive manner, wherever possible, as guests will review these prior to booking. If it is appropriate, phrase the rules to tell guests what they CAN do, instead of what they CAN’T do.
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Rule #1: No Unregistered Guests
Only the specific guests noted in the booking are allowed on the premises. A violation of this Airbnb house rule will result in the immediate removal of all guests (and any visitors) from the property without a refund. If there is a disturbance with more than the occupants specified in the listing, a $25 per guest fine will be charged.
I highly recommend getting a video doorbell. This is the one I have and it has some great features including high definition video. Although having video may cause some extra stress as a host, it will also allow you to protect your property and furnishings from unwelcome visitors.
You can check out all of our recommended host essentials and supplies here.
Rule #2: No Locals
This Airbnb house rule sample informs local partiers that there will be further screening regarding their stay and that their request may be declined. The other option is to not allow locals as a general rule, especially last-minute bookings.
Rule #3: No Parties or Events
Although the “No Parties” option is a standard selection within the Airbnb Listing, I like to still provide this rule in my house rules list that falls under the standard selections. This image shows how the house rules are shown on the main page of your listing. It starts with the standard rules you select, and then your written rules are expandable below those:
You might want to check out Minut. They provide hosts with a small monitor which detects noise and vibration level in the home. If it reaches a certain level, it notifies you via their app.
In fact, you can check out all of our recommended tools for hosts here.
Rule #4: Lost Keys = Replacement Fee
Lost keys will incur a $25 fee per missing key.
For a while, I used small, standard silver keys to my home that I put in a lockbox like this one. After having guests lose several of these, I started providing larger, heavier keys with an extra decorative element attached to the key. This helped guests remember the keys, and also has been helpful in locating them once lost. But once I discovered this smart lock, I got rid of keys entirely.
Rule #5: Changing of Locks
Guests shall not re-key or change out door locks/ door hardware under any circumstances.
Rule #6: Follow HOA Rules
Guests will follow all homeowners association rules. A list of pertinent rules has been provided in the property for guest to review. (provide in house rules for extra protection)
Rule #7: Usage of Utilities
The total occupancy rate assumes and includes a reasonable usage of utilities. Your kilowatt consumption allowance is 160 KWH a day. Anything over this amount will be billed to the guests at $0.18 cents per KWH.
(Adjust numbers as appropriate for your situation)
Rule #8: No Illegal Substances
Illegal substances are strictly prohibited and grounds for immediate eviction from the Property. You, your guests and visitors, agree that any drug use on the Property, or using the Property for any unlawful purpose, or violation of any law or ordinance on or about the Property will immediately terminate your occupancy and be grounds for immediate eviction from the Property. You shall be liable for any and all costs incurred by Host and the refund will not be provided for the remaining balance of your stay.
Rule #9: Remove Shoes When Inside Our Home
Guests shall remove shoes when inside the home.
This rule is a must for my vacation rental. It may or may not work for you, depending upon your situation.
Rule #10: No Food or Drink In Bedrooms
No eating of food in either bedroom. Guests will compensate host for any food/ drink stains in the bedroom.
Wine and spaghetti just don’t mix with my luxurious white bed sheets…. I learned that the hard way! Make sure you guests know your expectations when it comes to eating and drinking in the bedroom.
Rule #11: Keep Furniture in It’s Current Place
Indoor furniture is not to be re-arranged. Dragging chairs/tables on hardwood floors will leave scratches on the hardwood flooring.
Rule #12: No Smoking
A $200.00/ per day penalty will be incurred if any sign or smell of smoke is encountered after the guest checks out. Cigarette monitors are installed in the home and the host will be remotely notified when smoke is present. (Yes, these monitors do exist in the UK. But in actuality, these are not installed in my home. I’m hoping that if a smoker sees this, they will move on and choose a different listing that allows smoking).
As of this writing, I have not submitted a dispute to Airbnb for this issue. Airbnb will most likely deny your claim, since how do you verify a smell. But I like having the verbiage in there anyway.
I have recently purchased a quality ozone machine to help eliminate odors left by guests. It works great, and makes a huge improvement in the overall air quality of my Airbnb.
Rule #13: Check Out On-Time
If the guest decides not to follow any of our Airbnb house rules, and which triggers a refund/ discount to the next guest, you will be responsible for any loss of income by the host.
Rule #14: Early Check-In or Late Airbnb Check-Out May Be Permitted
Any early check-in or late check-outs requests need prior approval by the host. Use the Airbnb app’s message system to request the change. If our schedule permits, we may allow a early check-in/ late check-out for a fee of $25 per each extended hour. This amount will be charged to your Airbnb bill.
Rule #15: Guest Agrees To Pay for Damages Exceeding Deposit
Any damage made to property or furnishings which exceeds the deposit amount will be billed to the guest and will be reported to Airbnb.
Rule #16: Garbage Disposal
We ask guests to kindly dispose of food in the available trash can. Garbage disposal is for small food remnants only. If the garbage disposal is damaged or clogged by guest, the guest will be charged for a plumber’s time to unclog or install new garbage disposal (if needed).
All items in the kitchen including silverware, pots/pans, spices, flatware, etc. have been counted, and any item removed from premises will be charged to the guest.
Rule #17: Honor Noise Rules
We want all of our guests are to be respectful of neighbors and shall keep noise to a minimum while in back or front yards. Quiet time is from 10 pm to 8 am. Any disturbance triggering a visit by police will require guests to forfeit the remainder of their stay and immediately vacate the property without any refund.
Rule #18: Respect Our Towels & Sheets
Please be respectful of bed sheets and towels. Makeup/foundation, face medications/creams, and tanning products will stain and/or bleach linens/towels. Please avoid using regular hand/bath towels with all skin products. Please use our provided make-up washcloths. Guests are not to wash laundry belonging to the home in order to hide stains. Housekeeping will wash all the laundry. Un-salvageable linens/bath towels will be charged to the guest– $20 for each damaged towel and $20 for each damaged sheet.
This “rule” could also go into your house manual as well….
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Rule #19: Additional Cleaning is an Extra Charge
At the sole discretion of the host, an additional cleaning fee of $90 can be charged if additional cleanup is required that goes above the standard cleaning.
I’ve had several guests who have left large amounts of trash piled up on the kitchen counter, have spilled large sugary substances all over the floor, and stained bed linens. As these all take extra time for the cleaner to address, an added fee is justified, as the cleaner may be billing you for more time.
I will typically wait for the guest to leave a review and then request additional money for the extra cleaning. This way you don’t offend the guest prior to getting their review.
Rule #20: No Pets
I have a no pets rule in my Airbnb. I found that there was just too much damage, poop in the yard, and accidents to justify the added bookings. Some hosts may disagree, so to each their own! You may decide to allow only small pets as an alternative to an all-out ban.
Rule #21: This One is a Must!
HAVE FUN AND ENJOY!
Where Can I Get an Airbnb House Rules Template?
We’ve put together a list of Airbnb house rules that you can use as a template. Since every hosting situation is so different, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all template that can be plugged in. But you can download the list of our house rules…just use the form at the top of this post.
What Happens if an Airbnb Guest Breaks or Violates the House Rules?
The proper course of action is to alert the guest through the Airbnb platform so that there is a record of the correspondence that Airbnb can review later if needed.
Hopefully the host and guest can resolve the issue without involving Airbnb. If it can be handled and the reservation runs it’s full term, then we recommend leaving what happened in the review, potentially flagging the guest’s profile if it is warranted and then if necessary requesting compensation or the deposit if damage/extra cleaning occurred etc.
If you cannot come to terms with the guest, and the violation is too egregious to allow the guest to continue, you’ll want to get Airbnb involved.
One of my guest’s teenage daughters punched a hole through my bedroom wall. This obviously broke my main house rule–no damage. Since the guest notified me about the damage the morning they were checking out, I quickly went over after checkout to inspect.
Based on my inspection, I quickly got a quote from a local contractor. I sent the contractor’s quote through the Airbnb app to the guest and requested money for the damage. She paid the additional fee, the repairs were made, and no dispute/ complaint was submitted to Airbnb. I did give the guest a nasty review. Especially since no apology was provided from the guest.
Are Airbnb House Rules Legally Binding?
Per Airbnb customer service: Yes. Guests and hosts relationships are regulated by the Terms of Services both parties read and accept on sign up, and house rules are restrictions that incorporated in the terms of service.
DISCLAIMER: Because the information herein is based on my personal opinion and experience, it should not be considered professional legal advice. The ideas and strategies that I provide should never be used without first assessing your own legal situation, or without consulting a legal professional. My thoughts and opinions may also change from time to time as I acquire more knowledge. These are, as discussed above, solely my thoughts and opinions. Your continued reading/use of my blog, email newsletters, whitepapers, Excel files, and other materials constitutes your agreement with and acceptance of this disclaimer.