Airbnb users beware.
Your friends who scoffed at you for renting out your place to a complete stranger for a few nights may have been right.
Like many who use the site, Ari Teman, 31, may have thought nothing of it when he received a request from the apartment-sharing service to rent out his luxury New York City apartment in Chelsea. The renter identified himself as David, who claimed he needed a place to stay for his friend’s wedding, the New York Daily News reported. After all, it’s a world wide service used by millions and a seemingly good way to make a little extra cash. In fact, according to the Airbnb site, there are currently 1993 places listed for short-term stay in Boston.
Teman, however, came home to a ransacked home which aparently was host to a “BBW Panty Raid Party,” hosted by the man who rented his place. Teman took to Twitter to air his anger for the apparent Airbnb freak fest.
He even drafted Airbnb a public letter through Tumblr:
You just sent a porn sex fest into my apartment, and now I?ve got over $87,076 in losses. I had to call 911 and have these ?XXX Freak Fest? people removed from my apartment, my super is having me evicted by my landlord, and I do not feel safe here anymore since hundreds of people got a text saying there?s an XXX sex fest in my apartment and continue showing up, according to the doormen who I?ll never be able to look in the face again.
Airbnb has agreed to pay Teman $23,817 in damages and is covering the cost of his hotel until he finds a new place to live, according to the New York Daily News.
“Over 11 million guests have had a safe and positive experience on Airbnb and problems for hosts and guests are incredibly rare, but when they happen, we try to help make things right,” Airbnb said in a written statement to Boston.com.
The alleged culprit David has been permanently banned from the site.
There haven’t been any public cases in Boston similar to Temans. However, this cases is a reminder to rent with caution.
One study posted online in January by Harvard Business School economists that looked at Airbnb.com users found that, in general, many Airbnb hosts discriminate against those requesting space, often charging more or less based on the name of the requestor. But clearly a name is not enough to accurately predict a sex fest.