How One Short Term Rental Host Nightmare was Avoided
Customer Success Story: My Spidey Sense is Tingling
We’ve got a guest success story for you today that we want to shout from the rooftops because it’s a perfect example of how quickly things can go south from a booking reservation AND how unaware we can be of the guests who book our property through booking engines.
One of our awesome customers, we will call him Jack (to protect his business and privacy), called in to tell us about an almost short term rental nightmare at one of his DC area properties. Lucky for Jack, it didn’t turn out like one of these headline-making horror stories or this crazy Super Bowl nightmare. But it easily could have without NoiseAware, and some good, old-fashioned Spidey Sense.
Jack’s (Almost) Horror Story:
On a recent afternoon, a last minute booking request came in from a prospective new guest. We’ll call this guest “Mike.” Mike sent a message to Jack inquiring about booking his rental for the night. He said it was last minute because he and his wife were just traveling through.
Fair enough. If you own a city rental then you already know, in metro areas that’s not uncommon. And Mike’s profile looked legitimate, so Jack decided to accept the reservation.
Mike said that he and his wife would be checking in around 4 pm that day and asked if Jack’s place had parking. Jack helped with providing all the information Mike would need and left him with the details of how to access the home when he and his wife arrived.
So far, so good. Or at least it seemed that way.
4:30pm rolled around, and Jack hadn’t heard from the guest, so he logged in to check his NoiseAware account to see if any activity was detected at the rental. Total flatline. Which if you’re not familiar with our product, that means no noises (aka sounds of life) were detected at that time.
Now, it’s not unusual for a guest to be a little late. Maybe they were still parking, or maybe they stopped for a bite to eat at the last minute. Whatever, no big deal.
So he checks again around 5:30 pm to see if there’s any activity. Still flatlining. So he shoots off a text to the guests and politely asks if they’ve checked in yet and if they need anything else.
Within 10 minutes Mike writes back and says they have checked in, his wife loves the place, and he’s in the process of reading the Welcome Binder Jack provided.
Ok. So now it seems everything is proceeding as usual, right?
Jack hops back on NoiseAware to confirm that it’s picking up activity sounds. (He’s had it pulled up on his phone this whole time)
Nope. STILL FLATLINING. Now that’s weird. Why would a guest lie about checking in?
Jack’s Spidey Sense starts to tingle.
Something is up.
So he asks his neighbor if he happened to see anyone or hear anything. He gets the same response that it seemed no one had come by...
Now the Spidey Sense that was tingling for Jack is a FULL BLOWN BURN.
Something is not right about this reservation. Not. Right. At. All.
As a precaution, Jack flags the stay. He immediately notices that something is off with the account.
Jack then receives a notification that there is noise within the property and sure enough his neighbor lets him know that the sound of “hip hop music” is blaring from within his rental.
Jack knew he had to lock these mystery guests out of his house immediately.
So when he noticed that the noise level had decreased on the property and returned to flatline he sprung into action!
Upon entry he finds empty bottles scattered around the room, the smell of smoke, and the remnants of what appeared to be a party taking place. Jack immediately grabbed the belongings of these unknown guests and left them outside the front door while proceeding to change the lock codes in order to prevent the fraudsters from reentering the house.
It was confirmed with Jack that the guest was in fact fraudulent and that they’ve cancelled the reservation to protect him. However, without NoiseAware he wouldn’t have been able to do anything but wait until the next day hoping the guest would leave or calling the police to try and get them involved which can be a tricky situation.
Instead, Jack was able to check that the property was vacant, rush in and change the locks as well as remove their belongings from the place.
Jack reached out to us after he realized that without NoiseAware he would have been dealing with a two day rager, potentially costing him thousands of dollars’ worth of damage and the story we see far too often on the news: coming back to a nightmare after the guest check out.
And here at NoiseAware, that’s a huge accomplishment. Proactively being aware instead of dealing with the consequences.
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