Submitted: September 23, 2012
Stayed: August 2012
I'm writing just over one month after my departure from this house, and I have finally received the security deposit returned to me. There's just one problem: It's for $90 less than what was put down. The owner claims the house required extra cleaning, but also noted that the woman hired to clean the house had her hip replaced the following week (which is why it took so long, I'm told, to get my money back). I wonder which theory is more plausible: That her cleaning lady with a hip needing replacing required extra time to clean the house, or that five young PhDs attending an academic conference who were not home most of the time we were in Denver dirtied the house to the point of requiring extra cleaning? She alleges we didn't follow the proper check-out procedures. I rent houses from VRBO, HomeAway, and AirBnB all over the world, all the time. I've never had a problem with the security deposit. We did what we need to do, yet we were penalized.
This wouldn't have been so upsetting if the house was stellar, but there are problems here. Most notably the fact that the air conditioning was not operational during our entire stay. It was hot. And I mean HOT in Denver. The property manager said she'd fix it. Every day we called. She said she was on it. Each day, we kept waiting for relief from the heat at night. We never got it. It was miserable trying to sleep at night, and the tiny fins placed in each room did little to help.
The house is in a dodgy neighborhood, and was a bit of a pain to get to from downtown where our conference was located. We figured it out in the end, but it was occasionally a headache that required cab rides or long walks to bus stops when the closer bus lines weren't in service.
In the end, I cannot in good conscience recommend this house. It has some wonderful qualities -- most notably the beautiful Victorian architecture -- but the owner is a bad manager and I wouldn't willingly go into business with her again.
Owner's Response: This guest chose to run the air conditioning overnight even though the outside temperature was far too cool to require it, and thus the unit froze. We communicated with this guest thoroughly during the first two days of his stay until the air conditioning was fixed. I paid $300 for an emergency fix so they would be comfortable the rest of their stay, and this charge was not taken out of their security deposit.
We also communicated thoroughly after their stay to itemize the way the house was left, which required extra hours of cleaning. Never once did this guest deny they left such a mess.
We also fully explained that the housekeeping invoice needed to be received to fully understand the honest deduction from the security deposit. This guest accuses the extra cleaning time on a hip replacement, when in fact it is the owner of the housekeeping company who invoices me who had the surgery, not the actual housekeeper.
This neighborhood is one mile from downtown Denver, thus it is considered inner city - there are people of all colors and races in the neighborhood. It is a safe and vibrant neighborhood, with a lot of opportunities close at hand, but if you are and are uncomfortable in a setting different from monochrome suburbs, perhaps this is not the home for your stay.
Helpful votes: 4/4
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