This company is not yet accredited. To learn more, see reviews below or submit your own.
Keep an eye on your inbox, the lastest consumer news is on it's way!
A link has directed you to this review. Its location on this page may change next time you visit.
Vacation Rentals By Owner or VRBO was a breath of fresh air. There was a spa/hot tub pool and pool table. Owners went out and bought a new game console so I would have something to play on the 3br 2bath home. Had a refrigerator fully stocked w/ condiments, a gas grill on back patio, restaurant menus w/ grocery store discount cards, 50 something inch screen, Cable, WiFi all across the street from Disney Land and @ $1,200 for 7days a definite change in price. D.L. was $485 per night one room, fridge didn't work, had to pay $25 per day Valet parking, doorman tips. VRBO 5???? ****D.L. 1????
We enjoyed our stay in the condo very much! It was clean, and stocked with things you would not have imagined -- like toys for playing in the sand and chairs -- little touches that just made our stay that much more pleasant. We had some minor issues along the way, but the property manager was available to us, and quite helpful every step of the way. We also had a beautiful view of the beach. Would definitely rent this condo again!
728 Dotters Corner Rd., Kunkletown, PA... was a “Cozy” and “FUN” home for our family to share! This “SPACIOUS and STYLISH” home... provided the 8 of us with an AWESOME “Winter Weekend” experience! The “Game Room” exceeded our expectations as we relaxed and enjoyed the 3 pinball machines... pool and foosball tables... multi-genre jukebox... and simulated golf driving range! We were impressed with the “Barn doors” and decorative accents... Joe ** infused throughout the home! Well done Joe! Thank you Colleen ** for a comfortable and priceless stay in Kunkletown!
I can't say enough about our experience at 241 2nd Street Key Colony Beach, Florida. From the time we arrived the house felt like it was our home. We were greeted shortly after arrival by a person from the management company to make sure we were able to gain entrance and we were asked if we needed anything. The house was exceptionally clean and both bathrooms and the kitchen are updated. The baths are equipped with clean towels, soap, shampoo and there are extra towels in the laundry room that is equipped with a stacked washer and dryer. The kitchen is equipped with newer glassware, dishware, pots, pans and a cabinet of spices.
The A.C worked perfectly and we were all comfortable day and night. This house comes with a membership to the Cabana Club which is just a block and 1/2 away. The Cabana Club features a large pool, access to the sandy beach and a restaurant with great food and service and drinks. The Key Colony Inn is also within walking distance with excellent seafood along with steaks for dinner. We didn't eat other meals there. There are many other great restaurants just a short drive away. I was able to eat Grouper, Hogfish, Yellowtail Snapper and Mahi mahi. You will enjoy your stay at this home.
When VRBO first opened, tenants made their rental arrangements directly with the owners. Contracts were not consistent. I was nervous. Eventually, I found myself renting several units a year. It is significant to this VRBO review, that I never had a bad experience with an owner. I have never had to contact customer service - so I am NOT reviewing VRBO's customer service department. VRBO evolved with every new parent company, and I thought I would hate the last change... the one where tenants were charged a fee for booking their stays. I almost switched to another site. So far I am glad that I did not change. I was used to dealing directly with the owner, and the new system brought back all the insecurities from before. But now that I have done several rentals for which I have paid a fee, I have formed a new opinion of the VRBO platform. I actually like it, and I don't mind paying the fee.
In addition to advertising, the VRBO platform now assists in scheduling, communicating between tenants and owners, funds transfers, etc. I have tried out the new platform, and I like it despite the fee. As I said before, I cannot comment on VRBO's customer service - because I have never needed it. But as I skim-read other reviews on this website, it seemed to me that the complaint was really about the owners, rather than the VRBO platform. People, please understand that the platform is a bridge between owners and renters. The platform cannot control the owner, or the management company.
Example: one reviewer wrote of a short notice cancellation: the owner could not clean the unit and feared a bad review. I had an owner contact me to cancel because of unexpected construction next door. I begged her to let me stay, assuring her that the construction would not trouble us. (We work in the construction trade.) The owner was really reluctant, until I suggested she give us a 35% discount. Bingo! Happy owner. Happy tenant. (The construction was really not a problem, and I got a discount.)
Most of my rentals have been in the US and in Mexico, but I just returned from Italy where I rented two units, for one week each. Yes, bad experiences with owners have happened, but usually owners take your rental experience seriously, and want you have a good experience. I am super proactive about planning very far ahead, reading reviews with a cynical eye and establishing a relationship with owners. Those are not services VRBO can perform for you. Despite what I thought a couple of years ago, I haven't been given reason to leave VRBO. Now that I've learned how to make the most of the platform, I don't mind paying the fee. TO OWNERS OUT THERE: a short notice cancellation hurts everybody. If you're not committed to responsibly use the platform and provide a clean and professional rental, then STAY AWAY. We don't want you.
- 1,821,174 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
- We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
- We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
- Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.
For more information about reviews on ConsumerAffairs.com please visit our FAQ.
VRBO has no quality control of the properties they advertise. There is only one customer service number and they are the worst robots for people. Know absolutely nothing, keep putting you on hold and still have no info for you. I rented a property that as soon as I walked in, knew it was disgusting. Talked to the property owner several times and finally decided I could not have my family stay in this filthy place. It had not been cleaned or updated in years yet the reviews state otherwise but from 2 years ago. Split level with people staying in the other unit playing loud music, smoking pot - just awful. We left at 10:30pm for a hotel. But because I cancelled the reservation, you don't get to write a review!! So angry and VRBO does not care.
Gone back forth with customer service 3 times and still nothing has been solved. Each time I've been told everything would be handled, and then it wasn't. Just been a total nightmare. Customer service agents are really hit or miss - I had one girl send ME the paperwork she was supposed to send to the renter, and then come back and tell me that the renter had approved it? Really disorganized and unreliable. Ended up just canceling the entire reservation. Not worth the hassle. Will book through Airbnb.
I wanted to rent a property for my son and family coming from 10 hour drive and it said 1-2 days rental min. So I messaged the owner because checking in would only allow me 2 days rental. She said it was fine and would contact VRBO and tell them. She even called me. So I called VRBO and the guy could hardly speak English and tried to rent me another place in the area. I stated I wanted that one that I had applied for. He said it was not available. I said, "I'm looking right here and it's available." So I called the owner and just gave up. So much for spending time with my family on vacation. I have always had great experiences with VRBO for years. What is going on VRBO!!!
In MY opinion, VRBO is not a good avenue if you own a property to rent. We own a condo in North Myrtle Beach and we do use a local agency to take care of our property, as we live 850 miles away. We pay a pretty decent chunk of change to be listed with VRBO to begin with. Then, when a guest books our condo, they give VRBO an extra $100. "This helps VRBO provide a safer and more secure booking experience, coupled with 24/7 customer support throughout your trip." Really? No, once the booking is complete, guests deal directly with our agency. If there is an issue, they deal with our agency. At no time does VRBO even get involved past the booking.
This "service fee" is a crock of crap. So, not only is VRBO raking in the cash from the owners, they are raking it in from the guests. I'm guessing that a lot of guests are getting smart and booking it straight from our agency, since we have only had 2 VRBO bookings in the past 2 years. Needless to say, this will be our last year with VRBO. This company is only concerned with their bottom line than they are with guests.
VRBO doesn't allow you to post a review after 2 weeks, but a renter will not receive a refund until that time. Which means you can only post a bad review and take your chances at NOT receiving your cleaning deposit back $300, in our case. Camille **'s home in Rockport was not a true 4 bedroom, they put a room downstairs in the garage and the bathroom had no air conditioning. Taking a shower in the heat of a Texas summer with car exhaust is not fun... Use a different home. Tried to leave a review for her house but like I said VRBO won't allow you. Plus you have to wash and dry the linens. So wake up early on your last day, as you have to have everything cleaned including fridge and linens washed and dried before checking out at 11 am!! All of this is not told to you until it's past the time to cancel.
DO NOT USE THIS WEBSITE!! It is impossible to get a refund or get in touch with someone who can actually help you at this company. I tried to contact the owner of the place I booked 7 times (including when they gave me his phone number, and he hung up on me). I decided to cancel two weeks before our arrival date, so I could still get the 100% refund. I have now spent over 3 hours chatting and calling their customer service numbers, trying to get that refund. They keep telling me that I will hear back form them within 48 hours. It is insanely hard to get your money back and I will never use them again.
I would have given NO stars had that been an option. DON'T USE VRBO IF THERE IS EVEN THE SLIGHTEST CHANCE YOU WILL HAVE TO CANCEL. I have used VRBO in the past and have never had an issue, but that is because I didn't need customer support. Until now....I had to cancel a reservation that was already paid in full. I was well within the time frame to receive 100% of the cost returned to me. However, what I didn't know until now is that the homeowner has to APPROVE of your cancellation and until they do, you can't get your money returned.
I had a reservation with an owner who was not great at communication, it would take a day or two to get a reply from a message any time I contacted her. Not a big deal until I ended up having to cancel. I sent her a few messages telling her I needed to cancel and the reason, plus I initiated the cancellation on the website. Took a while to hear from her and when I finally did get through to her, she claimed she was having trouble with the site. Next thing she said was she had tried three times to return the money but it wouldn't let her, then finally she refunded part of my payment, saying the system would not let her refund the rest.
After first trying to chat with VRBO a few times, then finally calling TWICE, and spending a lot of time on hold waiting to speak to someone, getting disconnected once after holding for 30 min., I was told that until the owner accepts the request to cancel, they have no way to return your money. What this means is that if the owner decides for whatever reason that they aren't going to accept your cancelation request by clicking accept and cancel, that they can hold on to your money for weeks or even months and there is literally nothing you can do about it. How does that sound for a business model? Great I suppose if you are VRBO or a homeowner, but certainly not great for the renter. I told the rep at VRBO that if everyone knew this was their policy, no one would rent through them.
So...here I am at the mercy of the homeowner to decide they are ready to return my full payment and I have no idea how long that can take. Every day that I've called VRBO, they keep telling me the home owner isn't doing it right on her end although they also told me it's as simple as clicking the accept button on the computer so I have a hard time believing they don't know what they are doing if it's that simple. They keep telling me to wait 24 hours, and in the meantime they will once again call the owner (who never answers, always has to leave a voicemail) and email them the instructions again. This is the 3rd time now that they've done the same thing and no refund. Once I get this taken care of, I will never use VRBO again. Stick with Airbnb if you need a rental....it definitely is not worth the hassle I am going through with VRBO.
What a terrible experience to find out a week before your reservation that the property owner stole our money and the property was a fraudulent property. My family and I have been trying to work with VRBO customer service since April; and it is now the end of June. We made our reservation back in January. I called and spoke to at least 9 different people last night and this morning with no results. They keep claiming that their rebooking department is reviewing our situation and will call us back, but probably not today even though we are less than six days away from our travels. The rebooking department only makes outbound calls and does not accept inbound calls. Seriously?? This is also after VRBO did not believe the property owner was fraudulent and that our reservation was active.
I suggested they call the number to see if they could reach the owner and what they discover? The number has been disconnected and the property is no longer available on VRBO. I wasted 3 hours yesterday and 3 hours today to talk in circles with customer service. They put me hold for at least 30 minutes plus, read me their script that "they understand how I feel and that they are doing everything they can." If they understood how I felt, they would understand that they put my family and I in a predicament with very little alternatives. The remaining properties are either twice the price or so far away from our destination, that it doesn't even makes sense anymore. I cannot believe this is how VRBO operates.
I finally got a customer service to admit that no one will be calling today and there are stranded travelers ahead of me. Now if that doesn't tell you something about the management and the poor operations of VRBO. I was generous to even give one star for this review. I like to give it negative stars and take the time wasted with customer service. My family and I will never rent from VRBO again.
I was looking to book a place for the Canada Day Long Weekend and I found what I thought was the perfect place. Great Location, decent price. So I sent off a reservation request. I receive a response from the own/manager say they sent me a "NEW" quote for the Long weekend. The Website price was $603 taxes and fee include and they decided to requote me $755 for the weekend. That is not right and completely unacceptable that they can up the price that is listed on the website.
Great concept, but I will not use this site any more, tired of the hidden fees. One room I looked at said "$117 Total price," but when you click on it the actual price is $202, after "cleaning fee," "service charge," and taxes. It's the same on every listing, the actual price is far higher than the listed price. Totally unfair and misleading. Just be transparent and give us the full price we will have to pay.
VRBO: to Vrbo, You have been inconsistent in your messages and caused me much stress for the last 4 days and hours each day on the phone with this issue: I have 2 recorded phone calls. I have all email documentation. All as following:
2) Yesterday AM phone call I hung up being told my account was activated, I was told again yesterday PM it would be back up when I followed up and then received another email last night declaring deactivated by someone named JJ.
3) Today (recorded conversation) Linda stated if I refunded via Paypal to the email address provided on file with VRBO and sent this email that the screenshots would serve to be reactivated, I did this immediately. Took a loss on my damages despite my photos provided.4) Today (recorded conversation) Corina stated she saw the notes, and saw the screenshots and therefor the case would be closed. I confirmed with her that I would not receive another email stating deactivation and she said no since the case was closed.
5) I received an email from Corina stating case was closed - listing went back up. I sent this listing to a renter to book.
6) I received another email from JJ saying it was being taken back down over something that was never included in any prior conversation (renter proving they received deposit back).
I have been very patient 4 days and several hours, you see all the phone calls I have endured to all this back and forth. We have been a loyal renter for VRBO with two nice properties and much money and EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE for our two higher end rentals in a small town. We have been a customer of yours for YEARS! A GOOD ONE! We have done everything we could to be compliant. This is over a $400 damage, a loss of a rental yesterday for 2197, t, and now we have lost a potential second. JJ should be fired.
We approached an attorney stating the loss and fees we have endured despite our compliance. I am a business owner... what you're doing isn't right. The mistakes made back and forth were internal and should have been addressed by a manager not at my expense. I know you all know that. The right thing to do would have been to leave my account activated even if your team member handle incorrectly. But to activate and deactivate two times is inappropriate. It caused me, a good customer for many years now, much stress and feeling extremely discouraged about proceeding with VRBO in future. Thank you.
The hosts gave wrong address, and only upon arriving informs us of LIVE FEED. I agreed to security cameras NOT LIVE FEED. Live feed infringes on one's expectation of privacy and I should have been made aware from the start. This was a business vacation and the wifi was down (according to other reviews it has been down when they claim to have solved the problem). One has to stay in contact with work, after several hours trying to contact host to no avail I was forced to go to a hotel room with wifi.
AIRBNB has a host policy stating "If you’re a host and you have any type of security camera or other recording device in or around a listing, even if it’s not turned on or hooked up, we require that you indicate its presence in your House Rules. We also require you to disclose if an active recording is taking place. If a host discloses the device after booking, Airbnb will allow the guest to cancel the reservation and receive a refund. Host cancellation penalties may apply." VRBO has no policy for the hosts and will not stand for the rights of the travelers.
Where to start? Booked a home for our son’s graduation from West Point. Lots of Family coming in, need a nice, large place to gather. Found a home and booked it. Prior to no-penalty cancellation, reached out to owner to confirm a downstairs bathroom bc our parents cannot do stairs. Owner confirmed there was a bathroom downstairs. When we arrived, found only a half bath. Explained to owner that would not work. We had to scramble to find rooms for family and ended up being farther away from our son and the events...at a great expense. Asked owner to work with us...nothing. Tried to work through VRBO.
Over past 10 days, I’ve spent almost 5 hrs on the phone (90% on hold) only to have to continuously explain the situation. Today broke the camel’s back. Nearly 2 hrs on the phone. When I told custsvc that there was not a bathroom downstairs, only a half bath...I was told “well most Americans consider a half bath a bathroom (huh?). When I told her that is not what VRBO defines in their policy as a bathroom (must have tub/shower), she challenged me and asked, “where, where in our policy does it say that?” I had to send her the webpage address and a screenshot where it is defined. She continued with ... “Well most Americans don’t see it that way” (again, huh?).
She then told me the owner lists the home as having 1.5 bath, I informed her that yes, she changed it after we expressed our concerns. Again, she asked me for proof that home listed 2 baths. And again, I had to send her a screenshot that showed 2 baths. Custsvc continued to say, well the owner isn’t going to refund our money and although there was misrepresentation, they were not going to do anything. I asked her to confirm what she said (i.e. misrepresentation), she said she meant there were misinformation, not misrepresentation...when I challenged that, she changed to say, well there was misrepresentation, but not enough for them to take action (so, let me see that objective matrix to determine what is enough). She did offer to return my $157 service fee...I told her to keep it and put it towards customer service training. Will never do business with VRBO again.
Six months later and still waiting on refund. Booked a trip Jan 22nd, 2019 for travel April 12th at a cost of $3,030.00. This amount was immediately charged to my Amex card. I had to cancel Feb 10th. Although I was within the 60 day advance cancellation window, I have yet to receive the last $274.00. Both parties (VRBO/HomeAway and host) are pointing fingers. I have followed up with all parties two more times without getting resolution. Today I called American Express to see if they can get this resolved. Buyer Beware!
Booking cancelled day before arrival. I booked and paid for, along with multiple fees, a place to stay in LA 3 months before my arrival date. The day before, the owner cancelled my booking, with a refund, but no valid reason. I was unable to leave a review to let others know that the owner cancelled at the last minute, the company doesn’t allow you to make complaints or send mail to an address about a problem. My refund will take 5-7 business days, I don’t have a place to stay, no money to re-book at another location and no way complain to the company or let others know of the issues I had. Buyers beware!
Tired of VRBO allowing un-vetted renters to book our property. Tired of VRBO renters not having any host review history that we can access and assess before accepting a client. Tired of VRBO rules that allows anyone with a valid or stolen credit card to rent my property. Tired of VRBO scammers trying to steal our money. Tired of VRBO renters stealing our towels and household goods and disrespecting our property. Tired of the low class, low life, trash people that rent via VRBO. Tired of the difficulty in getting ANY form of customer support from VRBO. Tired of the long delays in getting payments transferred to our bank account. Tired of trying to navigate through VRBO’s maze of menus to find answers to the simplest of questions.
Annoyed that I cannot terminate my VRBO account on my own using VRBO’s online account options. The search words of “delete my account” don’t even register a response. Tired of trying to communicate with non-English speaking so-called customer assistance reps. Tired of VRBO preventing potential renters from booking my property on the same day of arrival. Disgusted with VRBO wasting my time for 30 minutes in a chat room where I was trying to delete my account only for the agent to tell me s/he could not process my request and that it would have to elevated to another department. Pathetic customer service.
I just got back from four nights/three days in the London borough of Chelsea, staying at a VRBO-listed studio apartment. I have to honestly say this apartment was the worst stay for myself and my family that we have ever experienced in any rented accommodation. For a myriad of reasons, the apartment could not have been in worse shape, including black mold covering the majority of the bathroom ceiling, and windows that wouldn't close properly (important when you're at street level in a major city). Black mold is obviously dangerous; we called VRBO immediately and sent them photos of most of the issues (including the mold). They did nothing. I even had to call them back when they said they'd call to let me know if they could help. We spent as little time in the apartment as possible, trying not to let this issue affect the enjoyment of our London stay.
Now back in the States, I called VRBO again. After a half-hour conversation with one of the VRBO complaints people (one in an upper position who I assume would have the authority to help with this issue), she sympathized but the bottom line is that I was offered $75 as a way to say "sorry you experienced this." Beyond that, I have to take it up with the owner of the property and possibly write a negative review. In other words, even though VRBO allow this property to be listed, beyond the $75 offer they stay out of the picture. When you think about it, many of these internet companies set things up so the customer has little power if anything goes wrong, and the company's necks are out of the noose, so to speak. Ultimately I have to assume VRBO is ok with black mold in the places you and I may stay, at least they're not going to do anything about it.
I can and will call the health and safety department for the borough of Chelsea, which will hopefully help future renters of this apartment as it will possibly be in better shape. But, you understand I'm now in a position where I'm doing VRBO's work for them and not getting paid for my time. In short: Please know how VRBO operates, how they're set up to protect themselves and do little for you than offer sympathy and a token payment offer, and that you'll be doing their work for them.
I booked a vacation rental in Italy with VRBO's "instant confirmation" that guaranteed reservation. They instantly charged me for the rental. However, the property owner immediately cancelled. Neither VRBO nor property owner refunded the money and I had to chase both of them for over 3 weeks to get refund. VRBO simply says that it is your problem to arrange refund from the property owner. Property owner asked to refund via PayPal rather than on my credit card and this resulted in PayPal charges to receive the money. Neither VRBO nor property owner will pay these fees. Long story short, steer clear of VRBO. They make it very difficult to get money back.
Two days ago I tried to make a reservation. The owners have 24 hours to respond. The owners declined saying that have not updated their rates for next year. Yesterday I tried again and was again declined for the same reason. Today I opted to use the Instant Book feature which claims you do not have to wait for an owner to respond. I was approved but a couple of hours later, I received an email stating they had not yet updated their prices for next year and to check back in a few weeks.
I attempted to contact VRBO via live chat online and was disconnected twice. I called their phone number, was assigned a case number and transferred to another representative where I was told this should not happen with Instant Booking and she is "so sorry this happened" blah blah. And that was it. Owners should be penalized for canceling reservations so they can raise their prices! And their website does not allow you to post a review on such an issue, so consumers are left unaware. I do have two screenshots of the live chats from which I was disconnected and my case number was **.
My wife and I decided to go with VRBO after many searches through various travel sites. We booked a KING suite at a luxury hotel for our Memorial Day vacation at a location which was not close to a beach. I planned out our weekend by scouting local activities and lined up a full weekend for our stay while in the area. Upon arriving we discovered that our room didn't exist. The hotel was full and had no other rooms available. The hotel offered us a cancellation with no fees. We spent the next 50 minutes waiting on the phone with VRBO to cancel. Their mobile app and website had no way to cancel the booking. They ruined our 2019 Memorial Day weekend and wasted all of our time to plan and drive to the hotel. They offered no alternative or tried to help us find a new location anywhere nearby. No apology.
I am a product designer and I help businesses address customer pain points. IMO VRBO seems to be in an early stage of customer service alignment. Could be the hotel booking side of the business has not reached product-market-fit. Sadly most people will not see this post so the impact will probably make little difference. I would not recommend using their hotel booking service. It seems as though they don't vet their listings. Wait until 2020-21 before trying it or be a beta tester like we unknowingly were.
VRBO provide NO assistance for reviewing and complaining about poor quality or unclean properties. VRBO has been NON-responsive to all efforts to complain. Their “virtual” assistant provides no help. **
I rented Unit 31 at Destin Towers for the week of 5/25-6/1. When we arrived to condo we were given the door code for Unit 51. They changed my unit! I was never told this change was made. I contacted the “manager” Chris **, he told me that he called me 8 times and was unable to reach me. I work full time and only recall missing one call from him. I tried to return his call and he didn’t answer. He never once sent me a message through the VRBO app, or email. Which is how we had been corresponding since this started. I’m not happy that the changes were made without my approval.
I have been staying at this condo for the last 7 years! I always rented through Compass Resorts or Southern Rentals. I have previously stayed in unit 51 and the air conditioning broke. It was miserable! The condo is very nice BUT again this year it was very HOT. I called Chris and he sent an air conditioning company out the next day, I was told the AC unit wasn't working properly because the doors weren’t allowing the unit to breathe, so we had to leave the doors to the utility closet open the rest of the week.
I’m very disappointed in how this was handled. The manager never offered an apology or any compensation for the changes he made WITHOUT my approval. I also paid more than I have EVER paid staying at Destin Towers, it was $3,275.78 through VRBO for one week! Through Compass Resorts and Southern Rentals, I paid around 2,300-2,500. I will NEVER rent through VRBO again. I did NOT rent Unit 51, I rented Unit 31. This is a prime example of PISS POOR MANAGEMENT.
I booked a vacation for my family with VRBO. My husband was retiring from 36 years of active duty Air Force, his birthday and say good to our kids and grandkids because we were moving out of state. The owner lied and cancelled ya the night before we were to go. I had to wait 7 days for a refund and find and rebook a new vacation. I contacted VRBO and simply requested they remove this owner from their site as she cheated us out of our money and lied about being double booked. I told them if they didn’t... they would be condoning this behavior. They did not... in fact they admitted. The owner lied but it is apparent they would rather keep that relationship than lose a customer and ruin a veteran celebration on Memorial Day.
Following a two-month advance reservation, owner sold property, closed escrow, and cancelled my reservation three days prior to dates of tenancy. Without protection from such reservation abuse, I cannot trust that the same will not recur. I will make no further reservations through VRBO.
We arrive to the home which we rented for three days. When we rented the home apartment via The VRBO/Home Away from Home, the description of the property stated it was refurbished and parking on the premises was available. Upon our arrival we had no where on the property to park and the property had no parking on it as stated. Called the owner who said she sent us a welcome email we never got with instructions on. She told us we could park in the public street if we found parking or in a paying parking garage ½ mile away. Well that was a bad start! So in opening the house door, we realize this was not a house but an upstairs apartment. Description stated it was an entire house, not an apartment above another apartment, which was occupied.
So, after we parked in the street, we began to take our suitcases in the house and up a flight of stairs which was not mentioned. While waiting for the rest of the luggage to be brought upstairs, I went to the kitchen and decided to make a cup of tea. I grabbed a cup to get water so I could get water from the kitchen faucet and turned on the faucet in the kitchen to fill my cup with water to heat. I turned around to place the cup on the counter and I had a man knocking relentlessly on the back door, who I had no idea who he was. He was crying out that water was coming into his apartment when I turned on the kitchen water faucet. I was alone in the kitchen and it startled and scared me as I did not know who he was.
I called out to my friend and told my friend there was a man knocking on the door yelling out that there was water coming into his apartment every time we turned the kitchen faucet for water. My friend asked him who he was and he replied that he was the tenant and owner of the downstairs apartment home and that water comes into his apartment when the kitchen sink or water is used every time from this apartment we rented and were in. Both of us were perplexed and ask him to meet us downstairs at the entrance in the street. We rented this apartment in good faith and good will through Home Away from Home/VRBO.
In speaking with the owner/renter of the apartment downstair, we were told by him that the upstairs’ apartment owner Claire, has known about the water leaking issue into his apartment for a while and it has been going on for four months. Problem: The owner of the upstair apartment leaking water to the tenant apartment downstairs rented the apartment to us with that problem and condition knowingly. At that we were both dumbfounded and called the owner of our rental. We placed the call to her on speakerphone so that all three of us were present to include the owner of the downstairs apartment. She told us that she thought that problem has been fixed months ago and she was not aware of this problem or any water problem continuing.
The owner of the downstairs apartment stated she knew about it and he was not been given access to enter her apartment to fix the issue as it was coming from her water pipelines upstairs. The downstairs owner wanted to come into our rented apartment which we had just gotten there and tired from a long travel, with what he called his plumber which we knew neither of the men. I felt scared, I and felt I could no longer trust the rental space as the owner was not honest with us from the start and knew about this problem in addition to no parking on premises as stated in the property description she posted on VRBO/Home Away from Home. We had not even been there for five minutes and this occurs.
We were not told in advance, nor will we given a heads up that there was a problem and that strangers would be knocking on our door trying to get into this apartment to fix a problem we knew nothing about nor was it stated it in the description of the rental or before we rented the apartment. Nowhere did I state this! If it had, we would not have rented this. As a precautionary to safety and not having something ugly happened to us, we do not let strange people without any notice or an owner present into any space that’s rented, unless we wanted to end up in a bad situation.
After this we returned upstairs to the apartment to look it over since we did not get that chance with the type of encounter we had within five minutes of getting there. The apartment was filthy and dirty, the bathroom and toilet reeked like human urine, all the furniture had dust on it, and there was only one towel per person left for three days’ stay. The apartment clearly not as described and not habitable as we could not use water without it leaking into the apartment below. So were we not supposed to take shower and clean ourselves? We therefore call the owner back and told her that the apartment had not been well cleaned and that there was a very harsh urine smell in the toilet and in the bathroom.
We also asked her if she had any extra towels as we were only left one towel a piece for three days. She became rude and told us that if we did not like the conditions of the apartment that we should seek to rent a hotel instead. We paid over $424 USD for this rental and don’t expect to be treated this way especially when we brought it to her attention immediately. When she told us we should find a hotel if we didn’t like the conditions of her apartment we decided we could not stay there under these conditions, water leaking into the tenants’ apartment, a dirty household, one towel, and her reaction to everything.
Then she told us that she will send her cleaning lady back out which the lady showed up at 6:30 PM that night taking one day of our vacation time of doing things since we had to wait for her. When the cleaning lady got there she apologize immensely for not vacuuming and cleaning the furniture and other areas correctly. Also, she mentioned that the smell of urine in the toilet not coming off meant there was plumbing issues going on out of her control. The problem of the water still existed therefore we decided we could not stay there under these conditions. We told the owner Claire, that we were going to find a place to stay and we would be will be leaving her apartment due to all of the problems.
We called VRBO and home away from home immediately to report what is happened. Unfortunately they could accommodate us but late at night after 10 PM. They never mentioned any additional cost and we were not planning for any additional costs as well. We were seeking hard to find another apartment to rent, or, a hotel. Unfortunately on short notice there were no rentals available for that evening and we had to end up staying there overnight. We discussed this matter with the owner and she said she would refund us the two days that we were not going to stay. That was a verbal remark from her to us on the phone for which we should have recorded the conversation.
In the morning we got up we cleaned up everything and left the apartment clean and n the same conditions that it was given to us after the second cleaning lady came by. We called the owner, in addition to sending an email to her in writing that we were leaving the apartment. She told us she was going to have to charge us a second cleaning fee for which we already paid for in advance for a clean apartment from the start. Her reason was that she had to send out her cleaning lady a second time who didn’t do the job correctly the first time. However she reinstated that she would be refunding two days to us minus a second cleaning fee.
Later on after we left her apartment, we received an email from her and she was extremely upset that we had called VRBO/home away from home and reported what is happened and what our findings were. In addition when we did call VRBO/HomeAway from home, we were asked by them to send pictures of what our findings were. We did send them the pictures however the plumbing issue was in the wall and we had no way of taking pictures inside the wall to show what has occurred and what was going on with the leaking water pipes. At that we did not reply back to the owner and we were letting VRBO/home away from home handle the situation. We were told by VRBO that she had five days to reply.
On the fifth day post the complaint we called VRBO to follow up on our claim to see how we were to be refunded for two days Claire told us she would do, only to be advised by VRBO that she stated she was NOW considering if now she was going to give us a refund or not. At that VRBO told us there was nothing they can do because refunds were up to the owners of the rentals. So VRBO/home away from home, renter’s guarantee policy is a crock of **! Because under these conditions, we should’ve been refunded through the renter guarantee policy a VRBO and home away from home, regardless of what the owner decided. We provided all of the evidence, we provided pictures, we provided everything VRBO asked for and then they VRBO would not help us.
We had multiple cases open with them, and they refused to even consider the situation or assist us and provide a refund under their renter’s guarantee policy. First VRBO stated they would refund us, as it was under renter’s guarantee and then they told us no. VRBO also stated that we needed to provide pictures of the leak and water pipes in the wall. How are we to do that without damaging the walls the pipes are in to get pictures. Ridiculous on VRBO. All VRBO had to do is contact the owner of the apartment below.
Renters beware, stay away from this particular rental unless you want to be ripped off and consider the type of business transactions you do with VRBO/home away from home, as this was a dishonor to a renter and a paying consumer. The only refund we ended up getting was 100 Great Britain Pounds equaling $124 USD from the owner who I guess is trying to show that she made a contribution for which we know that’s not what she really meant and then she took a second cleaning fee out and kept a full day’s rent. We rented this in good faith and goodwill and this is what we got slapped in the face by an American Rental company and ripped off by an international renter in Scotland who is allowed to advertise her apartment for rent with an American company under those conditions. Property is still advertised under the same description. Good day everyone!
VRBO.com Company Information
- Company Name: