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  • Writer's pictureJoe

The Cleaning Fee Has Got to Go

I don’t understand how we got here. I don’t understand why we’re still here. I’m not sure of the origins of the cleaning fee, and I don’t care. It needs to go.

I once tried to remove the cleaning fee and just integrate it into my nightly rent. The headline of my listings read: NO CLEANING FEE! Does anyone want to guess what happened? Bookings tanked. Why? Guests thought that having no cleaning fee meant they would have to clean. So despite all the hatred and controversy surrounding the cleaning fee, it can’t even be removed because guests expect to see it and question your operation if you don’t.

We’ve seen hosts advertise $10-a-night listings with $500 cleaning fees. We’ve seen hosts charge a cleaning fee higher than what they pay their cleaner so they can pocket extra money. It's madness, and the things we are doing in our listings to entice bookings with reasonable cleaning fees is the definition of jumping through hoops.

It doesn’t have to be that way. We will be updating our website soon to integrate the cleaning fee into the final total. I challenge Airbnb and VRBO to do the same. There is no need for guests to know how much the host pays their cleaner.

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