WE OCCASIONALLY rent our Downtown Casita to vacationers via AirBnB. I say “occasionally” but “almost never” is more accurate these days.
We purchased the place in 2010 with an inheritance I received after my mother died in 2009. We had no plans to rent it. It just seemed like a good idea at the time, an investment, and it has increased in value. Also in my mind was that my child bride might move there after my demise because the Hacienda is a handful for a single inhabitant.
Initially, we planned to overnight there on occasion for the fun of it — it’s walking distance from the main plaza — and we did for a while, and then we didn’t. We never do anymore. That’s when AirBnB came to mind. That mega-business was just gaining traction all over the world. We began to rent fairly often via AirBnB.
There were about 30 AirBnB properties in our city of about 80,000 residents when we started , and now there are over 180. That’s a whale of a lot of rentals in a relatively small tourist town, and it’s affected our business a lot. We don’t get many bites anymore.
AirBnB is based in San Francisco, California. It was launched in 2008, and the current name debuted in 2009, so you see we signed on fairly early.
Being a San Francisco company, AirBnB is firmly committed to every silly detail of politically correct nonsense, and just recently they debuted a new policy: When someone requests a reservation, AirBnB hides the profile photo from the property owner.
That’s right. Even though customers fill out a profile that includes a photo, AirBnB won’t let hosts see it until the reservation is approved. This is to avoid “discrimination” on the part of property owners. You might not want to rent to a Mexican, a gay couple, or two young women with purple bangs, nose rings and an attitude.
And they’re right about that, but if you’re a property owner, you should have the right to cull. That’s my opinion. We do cull by age, but that’s legal in Mexico. It’s not old people we don’t want. It’s young people. We embrace old people.
The way I see it is, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” You can tell a lot about looking at someone’s photo. It’s very helpful in deciding yea or nay, and I’m rather picky. We’ve had 18 rentals, ranging from two weeks (our minimum) to three months (our max) and every one has given us five stars in all categories. I’ve returned the favor.
We’ve had good people. Buena gente.
AirBnB has a written policy, and it reads like a SJW Manifesto. Diversity, inclusion, multiculturalism, respect. All that leftist hullabaloo. And now you cannot even see what potential guests look like, a very bad idea. This so-called fairness move is 100 percent in favor of guests and 100 percent against property owners.
I’ll likely be looking into other rental options, ones that favor the property owners over the tenants, ones that stick to capitalism, not Social Justice.
But we’ll stay put on AirBnB, at least till they boot me for being a Trump fan.