Homeless AirBNB Host: Pregnant AirBNB Host Left Homeless After AirBNB Guest Trashes Her Home

Source: Twitter @ ErikaCoaches

Erika Gemzer was pregnant and planning for her exciting new life with her husband and baby when the unthinkable happened. An AirBNB guest who had rented the top floor of her house flooded the property irreparably, and then left without a word.

It Started Out So Well

Erika owned a two-story building in the heart of San Francisco, which she bought with her entire life savings. The building was two livable units, stacked one on top of the other with a smaller apartment on the bottom, and fancier apartment up top.

Source: Pexels @ Leon Macpagal

Erika lived in the smaller bottom unit with her husband, their dog, and their cat. In order to make ends meet in a booming and increasingly expensive economy, she renovated the top unit and rented it out to help cover the mortgage.

An Excellent Idea

Prior to this spring, that upper unit was rented out by some long-term tenants that Erika had a good relationship with. They moved out of the apartment just as Erika found out that she and her husband were expecting their first child.

Source: Pexels @ Belle Co

Erika thought that the space would be a great way for hers and her husband’s family to come stay when they needed help with the new baby. In the meantime, though, it was an ideal time for her to rent out that upper space on a platform like AirBNB to make some extra money.

An Early Exit

Following her idea, in April of this year, Erika and her husband hosted a guest in their new AirBNB space for the span of one month. The result of that visit is a nightmare that rivals the worst caught-without-your-pants-in-class story that any of us can come up with.

Source: Pexels @ Belle Co

While the AirBNB guest paid to stay for a full month, Erika woke up one morning and discovered that the guests had vacated early and without warning. More horrifyingly, though, was the situation that the guests had left behind in Erika’s building.

A Perfect Storm

During the guest’s stay, they had evidently clogged the upstairs bathroom toilet with baby wipes and human waste. For those who don’t know, baby wipes are not flushable, and the packets all clearly state that they are not meant to be put down any sort of drain because they won’t decompose.

Source: Twitter @ ErikaCoaches

Erika’s guests evidently ignored this clear warning. That, combined with the overflow of human waste in the toilet bowl, had damaged the valve that manages the flow of water from the tank into the bowl. It was a perfect setup for disaster.

Sleeping Through The Calamity

Erika had gone to bed the night before at a reasonable hour. She was dealing with morning sickness that comes with the first trimester of pregnancy, and wanted to get some rest. She slept that night with no idea that the unit above hers and her husbands was flooding.

Source: Twitter @ ErikaCoaches

Erika woke up the next morning to a disaster scenario. The water from the toilet tank had been running from the tank into the bowl, out of the fecal-filled bowl into the apartment, for fifteen hours. All three levels of the building ended up flooded with sewage over the course of one night.

Erika Immediately Tried To Get It Fixed

Erika was devastated that over 50% of her home was now ruined, but immediately went about trying to rectify the situation. Due to the fact that the building had been damaged by the AirBNB guest who had damaged the toilet, she contacted AirBNB right away about fixing the damage.

Source: Twitter @ ErikaCoaches

Unfortunately, she was presented with bad news. AirBNB has a policy called the Host AirCover Guarantee that is allegedly worth $3 million, and Erika believed that policy would cover the damage to her home. She was told that she would have to get the repairs completed first before she could file a claim with the customer, not with AirBNB.

A Horrifying Circumstance

Erika was devastated. This wasn’t simply a broken lamp or piece of furniture that had been damaged by a careless guest. This was a building that was now on the verge of being condemned due to unsanitary conditions. She knew there was no way that her guest would be able to afford the repairs that the building needed.

Source: WWNYTV

She hired her insurance company to give an estimate for simply drying out the house, a whopping $130,000, and sent the estimate to the customer. As expected, the customer immediately stated that they would be unable to pay, and Erika filed a formal ticket through AirBNB to get the repairs covered.

Damages Upon Damages

Due to the damage to the building, Erika suddenly found herself homeless right after she hit the twelve-week mark of pregnancy. Unfortunately, her troubles were only just starting. Over the next six weeks, she proceeded to wrestle with AirBNB about their coverage policy, trying to get them to cover the damage to her home.

Source: WWNYTV

AirBNB stated that they wouldn’t pay anything until an independent investigation was conducted. They even implied that Erika might have done the damage to the toilet herself. But when a plumber came to the building to inspect the damage, he required Erika to pay him personally because he didn’t trust that he would get paid by AirBNB.

An Unacceptable Response

From there, things got worse. AirBNB evidently offered Erika $6000 for her repairs, then the offer disappeared from the app and her email. Erika tried to get them to cover her lost income from the space being ruined and the preliminary damages to the building, but they refused to return her emails.

Source: WWNYTV

Finally, on talking to a friend who worked for the company, Erika was finally able to get the issue escalated internally and was assigned a case manager. Even with this slight improvement, there’s been no response to her requests for financial assistance or her documentation of the damage.

Erika’s Dilemma Continues

All in all, the situation has spanned six months, and over $300,000 in damages and lost revenue. Erika has spent over 20 hours a week trying to get her home repaired so that she and her family can move back in, 10 hours a week trying to find temporary housing to stay in, and uncountable hours trying to deal with AirBNB.

Source: WWNYTV

Now 41 weeks pregnant and due any day, Erika is at the end of her rope. AirBNB gave her a “final offer” of $31,000 with the requirement that she sign away any right to future payment. To add insult to injury, Erika lost her “superhost” status with the company, and is still working to make sure that AirBNB does right by her and her family.

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James Cross

Written by James Cross

James Cross, an enigmatic writer from the historic city of Boston. James' writing delves into mysteries, true crime, and the unexplained, crafting compelling narratives that keep readers and viewers on the edge of their seats. His viral articles, blog posts, and documentary-style videos explore real-life enigmas and unsolved cases, inviting audiences to join the quest for answers. James' ability to turn real mysteries into shareable content has made him a sensation in the world of storytelling.

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