Staying at an Airbnb can be a great way to save some money on a trip. However, there is a degree of trust that must be had between the owner and the renter, which usually means that there won't be any wild parties held at the property. However, it does happen, and a recent fatal case of an Airbnb party house shooting has led to new rules being made by the company.
"Starting today, we are banning “party houses” and we are redoubling our efforts to combat unauthorized parties and get rid of abusive host and guest conduct, including conduct that leads to the terrible events we saw in Orinda," Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky wrote in a tweet on November 2.
His tweet was referencing an event that took place on Halloween in Orinda, California when a party at an Airbnb location became the site of a deadly shooting. A woman rented the four-bedroom house claiming her relatives had asthma and needed to escape the wildfires.
It was later discovered by a neighbour that the house had been rented for a Halloween party with more than 100 people attending. Although the owner contacted the police to put a stop to it, they did not arrive in time to prevent the shooting, which left five people dead.
Starting today, we are banning “party houses” and we are redoubling our efforts to combat unauthorized parties and… https://t.co/QqJgbEWYUu— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714046.0
Chesky outlined the new initiatives from the company to prevent these types of tragedies from happening again in a Twitter thread. These include "expanding manual screening of high-risk reservations flagged by our risk detection technology," "creating a dedicated “party house” rapid response team," and "taking immediate action against users who violate these enhanced guest policies, including removal."
Chesky wrote that Margaret Richardson of the company's executive team will be overseeing a "10-day sprint" on these new measures to roll them out as soon as possible.
First, we are expanding manual screening of high-risk reservations flagged by our risk detection technology.— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714065.0
Second, we are creating a dedicated “party house” rapid response team.— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714079.0
Third, we are taking immediate action against users who violate these enhanced guest policies, including removal.— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714098.0
I have directed Margaret Richardson from our Executive Team to oversee this new team and initiate a 10 day sprint t… https://t.co/3xalpFEhpj— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714133.0
Chesky ended his thread saying, "We must do better, and we will. This is unacceptable."
We must do better, and we will. This is unacceptable.— Brian Chesky (@Brian Chesky) 1572714239.0
With these new rules laid out, staying at an Airbnb may become more secure and safe than it has been. There are plenty of great places to stay, such as movie-themed Airbnbs in Canada.
Of course, the number of Airbnb rentals in Toronto has also had a negative impact on the price of housing in some neighbourhoods. A house that may have once been listed on Airbnb in Toronto was also the site of a shooting in August 2019.
A representative from Airbnb Canada confirmed to Narcity that these new measures would apply to Canadian Airbnb locations as well.
Disclaimer: Cover photo on the right used for illustrative purposes only.