Day 15 (Saturday, March 28th)
Can we delete this day and move ahead?
Around 2am I received an inquiry for the Airbnb. It was a short message asking me to call the potential guest, but Airbnb doesn't allow phone numbers to be transmitted so all I could do was respond to the guest. Airbnb warned me the guest may be trying to book outside of the platform and reminded me that this was forbidden. While I was awake I also noticed the thermostat at the Airbnb had gone offline. No message from the current guest, so I didn't worry too much.
I went back to sleep until nearly 8am. I never sleep this late, but it was nice to get a full 8 hours for a change. Then I started looking at my emails. I still own three rental properties in Alabama. I had received maintenance alerts for two of them. One reported that the A/C was not working. The other reported a fairly significant leak with water damage. I'm still waiting for the March rent on the third property, by the way. As they say, when it rains, it pours.
|We don't normally include holes in our doors.|
And that's when the storm hit. That "future guest" who had attempted to contact me overnight messaged me again. Turns out she lives across the street from my Airbnb. The police were called to the house twice overnight. There was a party, fighting, the sound of breaking glass. She'd tried to reach out at 2am not to book our home, but to let me know what was happening. My heart sank. I mean, it felt like the world was caving in all around me.
After confirming with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office that they had indeed come to my house, I only had one choice: remove the guest. We don't allow drama. No parties, no groups over 6 guests. My partner and I left for the house. I arranged with the sheriff's office to have a deputy accompany me when I removed the guests. Three cars showed up at once. My fears and anxieties were lifted, and a newfound confidence restored by the fact that three officers of the law were backing me up. Fortunately the guest only protested slightly. Within half an hour they were gone.
|That's a rug. No, smoking is not allowed.|
The house did have some damage, but it could have been much worse:
- Someone punched a hole in an interior door.
- Area rug was ruined by smoking (marijuana, not tobacco).
- Every sheet and pillowcase was stained.
- Vomit on bathroom floor and behind toilet.
- Electrical outlet covers broken.
- The drain pipe for the air conditioner had been knocked loose. It was 85 degrees in the house because it triggered the shut-off - this explains the thermostat going offline.
Fortunately, we were able to restore the house in a few hours. All that's left to do is to replace the area rug and repair the door.
So, that was our Saturday. How was yours!?!
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