Handling Neighbour Complaints about Noises in Your Airbnb Rental

In 2020 alone, Airbnb generated 3.4 billion US dollars in revenue and over 193 million bookings occurred through the platform over the course of the year. In Australia, there are over 346,000 active listings and as statistics show, the average host earns 924 dollars per month.

The business model is definitely a lucrative one but there are some challenges and potential issues a host will have to overcome.

Whenever a property’s located within a residential building, there’s always a risk of too much noise and disturbing the neighbours. Have you experienced such a problem as a host? Either way, if you don’t know what to do about potentially noisy guests, the following guide can come in handy.

Examples of Noise Complaint Situations

When letting people into your Airbnb flat, you never know how they’ll act and whether their presence is going to become a nuisance for the neighbours (regardless of Airbnb rules and limitations pertaining to property use).

Unfortunately, there are many instances of guests throwing parties or being extra loud. If you go through the official Airbnb community centre, you’ll come across numerous topics dealing with the issue.

Airbnb noise complaints and other similar stories are easy to find on websites like Airbnbhell.com. As the name suggests, the website is dedicated to people sharing horror stories about their experiences. The website features lots of anecdotes created by hosts, guests and most of all – neighbours.

There are many reasons why such situations occur. The host is the one responsible for ensuring adherence with local guidelines and regulations. Guests are typically using the property for a night or a few, hence they don’t really care about following protocol or making sure that the neighbours are unbothered. Unfortunately, a host can experience some serious issues down the line if regulations aren’t being enforced.

Airbnb’s Party Holding Policy

All hosts and listings have to adhere to the Airbnb community standards. As far as the party and event policy goes, members of the Airbnb community are prohibited from creating a nuisance and disturbing the neighbours.

As per the policy, gatherings of more than 16 people and disruptive parties/events are strictly prohibited. Needless to say, however, some guests don’t really care.

On Airbnb's Policy page, it lists a clear ban on all parties and events
Airbnb’s Policy page lists a clear ban on all parties and events

There are some consequences for such guests and these involve suspension from the platform. In addition, a host that has authorised a disruptive party in violation of Airbnb policies is at risk of having their listing removed.

While most guests are respectful and they wouldn’t use such an opportunity to have some careless fun, a host will have to be prepared for the worst case scenario if you condone activities that disrupt the lifestyle of neighbours. That’s why you need to have a plan for handling such situations in place.

Consequences of Neighbour Complaints about Noise in Your Airbnb Rental

Now, you may be thinking that neighbours complaining isn’t going to impact your Airbnb rental. This isn’t the case. Neighbours have a few options to exercise their rights if they’re being disturbed by your guests.

Neighbour complaints about noise can be submitted to Airbnb. In fact, the platform has an entire page dedicated to Neighbour Support. Urgent matters (for example – a party that’s happening at the moment) can be reported immediately to the neighbourhood support team.

There have been some complaints about the effectiveness of the system. Many neighbours report being contacted by Airbnb about the issue; however, immediate actions can be difficult to take while a party is occurring. A host will need to be willing to come by and address the situation; otherwise, a noisy party or a gathering will continue.

People have one more option when it comes to unacceptable levels of noise. That option is contacting the police. Obviously, that’s another serious issue a host will have to worry about.

There are two major channels where the neighbours can submit their noise complaints about the Airbnb
Hosts can choose either Airbnb Support or Police as the situation intervention channel

4 Ways to Address and Resolve the Guest Noise Issue

If you’re serious about running a business via Airbnb, you have to make sure that you’re on good terms with the neighbours. This means checking and controlling guest behaviour to reduce the risk of serious disturbances.

Just think about it – having to live next to a flat that hosts different people every few days can be incredibly annoying. Party noise complaints will be justified in that instance. Addressing such complaints post factum, however, isn’t going to get the job done.

Claim for the Security Deposit

As a host, you have the right to outline house rules in your listing. In the case of a violation, the host can make a claim for the security deposit. Such a claim will need to be reviewed by Airbnb before a final decision is made.

Contact the Guests 

If you get complaints while a party is ongoing, do get in touch with the guests and ask them to stop with the noise. In most instances, that would be enough to get the job done. When addressing people who simply cannot be reasoned with, you can contact Airbnb directly as a host and ask for assistance.

Dispute Reviews from the Guests 

In case you’re concerned about the bad reviews the guests might be leaving under your host listing once you ask them to comply with the house rules, Airbnb has updated their rules to protect the host rights in regard to the poor reviews from the guests who violate the party ban. Thus, you should protect your own right as an Airbnb host and submit the dispute here.

Guest Management Services

Finally, you can employ a service like the HLS security service. This is an all-encompassing solution that will give you true peace of mind. HLS staff members will help guests with the check-in process, complete an identity check, acquaint guests with the house rules and send security personnel over whenever the owner, or neighbours, are concerned about noise.
You can get in touch with HLS to find out more or to discuss a potential business partnership.