Disappointing. Unclean. Poor Customer Service.
I've delayed writing this negative review in hopes of receiving a response from the owner after making a formal complaint (including photos) to HomeAway.com. I'd anticipated this cottage to be just what I wanted: a base from which to do some painting (with a nice view even if the weather was bad) and a convenient location to visit family in the area. When I arrived, it was apparent the cottage had not been cleaned very well since last occupied (rings on the glass coffee table top, short hairs on the toilet). I notified the owner and he emailed me that he'd not had a problem before with his cleaners, must have been an end-of-season staff change. He did not offer to send anyone to clean so I did it myself. The longer I stayed, the more evidence I found that the cottage had not been deep-cleaned for a long time (dirt, dust and grime on baseboard heaters, bathroom floor, under bed, tan spill spots on navy blue carpet). The general yuck was so disconcerting to me that I lost sleep wondering how long since the blankets I was sleeping under had been laundered. After several nights of this, I decided to leave three nights early. At the same time, the owner had emailed to offer me an additional complimentary night at the end of my stay because he thought I might have felt cheated by the rainy weather. I informed him of my decision to leave not because of the weather, but because of the condition of the cottage. At that time I requested a refund for only 2 nights, even though I was vacating a day earlier than that. I did not receive any reply to my request. After one week, I filed a complaint with HomeAway.com and was informed they had contacted the owner urging him to resolve the issue with me directly. He has not done so in the several weeks since. In this day of doing business using the Internet, honest negative reviews are the only tool a consumer has for eliciting accountability. I feel I've given the owner every opportunity to address my concerns privately and he has not done so. If cleaned, this property would be a nice situation for a couple or single person; but if you rent this and have a problem -- watch out!
Owner's Response: I am not surprised to read this review as this individual threatened to write a bad review if I did not send her $174.00. I DO NOT YIELD TO BLACKMAIL OR EXTORTION. The day after she arrived she sent me an email saying there were " traces " of the last renter, however, never asked me to come look at it or to consider a new cleaning. The cottage is ALWAYS cleaned after the prior guest leaves and is checked out after the cleaning by both my wife and myself. As an effort to appease this woman we even offered her an extra day free of charge, not even a thank you from her. I offered this to her simply to show good faith and it had nothing to do with the condition of the cottage. All she has posted is untrue and is an effort to get money returned unjustifiably as the weather was not agreeable. There are new full bars of soap in the bathroom after each guest leaves and all her comments about it being unclean are simply not true. I will say I wished I had obtained a security deposit from her as she left the cottage a mess, dirty dishes in the sink, blankets in a heap on the floor and bed, and a mirror actually torn off the wall, what kind of person does this?? Hopefully future guests will read the prior review from guest John F for the truth about our lovely clean cottage and not consider the RAMBLINGS of this woman. Such a shame that owners who are going above and beyond to be good to their guests are subjected to untrue criticism.
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