For almost a decade, Open Air Homes has been at the forefront of the evolving short-term rental (STR) landscape in Los Angeles. While the rise of platforms like Airbnb has revolutionized the way people travel and experience new places, it has also brought challenges that were unforeseen at the outset. One of the most prominent and persistent of these challenges is the phenomenon of party houses and party groups. At Open Air Homes, we’ve been vocal about this issue since Airbnb Open in 2016.
Anticipating the Issues
We’re proud to say we were on the right side of this conversation. Perhaps it was a position we were thrust into, given our stature as one of LA’s most prominent STR management companies. Over the last ten years, we’ve experienced firsthand the negative impacts of not taking the party house issue seriously. Such occurrences not only damage properties but also erode the reputation of hosts and the very communities we aim to uplift.
The laissez-faire attitude towards partying in STRs has cast a shadow over hosts striving to provide authentic, respectful, and community-friendly experiences. As a result, we’ve been inadvertently painted with a broad brush, often viewed as nuisances rather than contributors to local economies and cultures.
Proactive Measures at Open Air Homes
We foresaw this challenge early on, which led us to implement a series of measures aimed at ensuring the safety of our properties, the peace of our neighbors, and the satisfaction of our guests.
Laurel Canyon by Open Air Homes
No Instant Bookings
By turning off the ‘instant booking’ feature, we assert the principle that a home isn’t just another commodity to be instantly acquired. We prioritize values over velocity, ensuring guests commit to being responsible and respectful community members before we hand over the keys.
Applauding Airbnb’s Step in the Right Direction
It’s heartening to see Airbnb starting to address this issue seriously with the introduction of their new AI tool aimed at curbing unauthorized parties. However, while technology can be a powerful tool in this endeavor, it’s essential to remember that AI models carry their biases. The success of such tools lies in the balance of cutting-edge technology with good old-fashioned human judgment.
Downtown Loft by Open Air Homes
A Persistent Advocate for Responsible Hosting
For seven years, Open Air Homes has persistently been championing stricter anti-partying measures. Yet, despite our advocacy, more work remains to be done. It’s time for platforms like Airbnb to genuinely collaborate with hosts who have demonstrated unwavering commitment to curbing the party house phenomenon.
A Call for True Partnership with Airbnb
Airbnb has an opportunity to lead the STR industry into a new era of responsible hosting and renting. But to get it right, there’s a pressing need for a genuine partnership between the platform and host advocates like Open Air Homes. Together, we can combine technology with experience-based insights to forge a path toward a more respectful, community-friendly STR landscape. By leveraging the experience of hosts who have long championed the cause of responsible hosting, Airbnb can fine-tune its approach, ensuring rules and tools are as effective and fair as possible.
This is a Pivotal Juncture
The STR industry is at a pivotal juncture. To ensure its sustainable future, platforms, hosts, and guests must come together to champion responsible hosting and renting. Open Air Homes stands committed to this vision. We urge our peers and platforms like Airbnb to rally alongside us, ensuring that hosts everywhere can proudly uphold the esteemed title of being an “Airbnb Host”.