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AirBNB landlord problems in Florida

Old 06-26-2020, 08:49 PM
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Default AirBNB landlord problems in Florida

I am having some issues with the homeowner of an airBNB my wife and two kids are renting until we can close on our house (45 days total rental). Iím wondering if anyone knows if the landlord has a leg to stand on before we go to arbitration or worse.

we agreed to rent a house from June 1 through July 15 with our 1 year old and 3 year old. Rental agreement states house has A/C, and all utilities are paid/included in the price. AC is a window unit in every room, House is about 75 years old. I like it cold. We cranked up the AC the first 10 days to a comfortable level. Rental agreement says nothing about what the AC can be set at.
on day 5, landlord asks if itís okay for HVAC installers to come and install central AC, and says it will take 4-7 days. We were okay with the performance of the window units, but we said it was okay bc we want to be amicable.

14 days later, Central air is installed, and window units are removed. It took so long to install bc the unprofessional HVAC techs only worked about 2-3 hours per day. They also got dust on every bit of clothing, computers, Navy summer whites uniform, and bedsheet (mind you, land lord charges 5$ per load of laundry).

new central air sucks. I turn thermostat to 68 to try to get temp below 78. Landlord texts my wife saying it needs to be at 74 bc the energy bill was too high with the window units during our occupancy and bc the new AC needs to be tested. Landlord never gives a suspense date for this test. Landlord has control over new AC with WiFi control.

after 48 hours of sweating in misery, I have a battle with landlord with me lowering temp manually, and her raising it via WiFi.

today, while Iím away, landlord comes to house (babysitter and two kids at home), and she raises the temp and tells the babysitter not to lower it below 74. When itís set to 74, temp throughout the house is 78-82. Babysitter tells landlord that my daughterís eye glasses steam/fog up too much when itís set to 74. My daughter has significant eye issues and needs to wear glasses at all times.

my wife gets home from work, hears about this drama from babysitter. Wife calls me and informs me. I research Florida eviction laws because Iím about to go to battle, but Airbnb is a bit unclear.

when I get home, wife says she couldnít wait for me and that she engaged the landlord via text. Wife is visibly upset.

I text landlord and tell her from this point onward, to only communicate with me. I also list numerous issues we have with the house and her failure to correct them. Landlord tells me her energy bill was too high and that keeping the house below 74 is not practical (not in the rental agreement, and I like it cold). Landlord says ďIím willing to give you a refund for the days you havenít stayed at the house yet, when are you leaving?Ē

I tell her weíre not leaving. Landlord says Iím rude and she doesnít want me in the house. I tell her we are not leaving and we have not breached the contract. Also explain to her that I wasnít rude, I just listed facts about her failures to get stuff done that she said she was going to get done, and that we have not breached the contract.

my understanding of Florida eviction laws is if I donít have a breach of contract, and I have no other residence, she canít evict me. I intend on setting the AC to 68 and covering the WiFi control in lead so she canít adjust it via WiFi.

Am I being unreasonable, does she have legal recourse, or is she In the wrong?
Old 06-26-2020, 09:01 PM
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It is a long process to evict in flordia. Harassing a tenant is illegal . Consult a real estate attorney and go from there. Laws may change with it being a short term rental.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:09 PM
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Good advice, I plan on calling one on Monday. I found a lot of information for a normal lease and for hotels, but Airbnb seems more unclear.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:11 PM
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I'd set the thermostat at 66! I'm sure you're paying quite a bit of money for the stay, so screw her and her electric bill. Flush the toilet every time you walk by it too.

You have a contract to stay there for a specified amount of time, and you should be comfortable....especially in the summer! Her controlling the thermostat with wifi is BS!!

IMO, she's wrong! She should be happy to have the place rented for 6 weeks!

How come you can't do your own laundry?
Old 06-26-2020, 09:17 PM
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As presented-Landlord is being unreasonable. Is there a process to file a complaint with AirBnB?
You might also call the States consumer protection office and see if they have jurisdiction.


If so, I would politely inform the landlord if she doesnít cease and desist, you will proceed to take a number of steps and get AirBnB and the states consumer protection involved.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:21 PM
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I would set it to 66 but my girls get too cold.. Iím all about wearing a parka in here though. We do our own laundry here, but she expects us to put 5$ in a cookie jar with every load. Rental contract said nothing about that, but we told her weíll give her 30$ for the 45 days. 30$ was goodwill to her. I told my wife to buy a new navy uniform and send the receipt to the landlord though, but my wife is a good person lacking in spite.

other than covering the thermostat in lead or unplugging the WiFi in the house, is there an easier way to disable the WiFi control?
Old 06-26-2020, 09:28 PM
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The problem with covering the thermostat is that's what senses the temperature. Try putting a new post in dockside asking the best way to disable the wifi. There's quite a few AC guys here!
Good luck.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:36 PM
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Good point. Maybe I should just disable her router and set up my own WiFi hotspot.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:39 PM
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Just go to the thermostat ( assuming it is a Nest or Sensei type device ) and change the wifi password, such that it doesn't connect to the wifi in the house - you MAY need to set your phone up as a hot spot for a few minutes, that ought to do it .

BTW, have had several AirBnB houses for years, owner does NOT get to set temps for guests !!!!! A curt FOAD should do it!!!!
Old 06-26-2020, 09:41 PM
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Find the WiFi And unplug it
Old 06-26-2020, 09:43 PM
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Close the registers in the room(s) where the thermostat is located.

Unplug the router in the morning and set the Tstat where you want.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:43 PM
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I would disconnect it from the internet & use hot spot. I wouldn’t put it past her having hidden cameras, it sounds like she is a control freak.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:46 PM
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You donít have a lease, you have a rental agreement that is more akin to a hotel guest agreement. It takes 4-6 weeks for an eviction in FL and thatís with an attorney handling it, cost of $750-$1000.

You simply have a disagreement. Your only claim is that the unit is not as advertised. You can try to make a claim through AirBnB and/or leave a bad review. The only other recourse is for you to file in civil court (small claims) for the amount you feel you were ďwrongedĒ by not having proper HVAC. In the end youíll likely get nothing more than aggravated. There is no legal tenancy, therefore, no eviction.

some good ideas above for the thermostat issue.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:47 PM
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Landlord sounds cheap AF and their AC unit is likely undersized for the house.

Airbnb also has a procedure for reporting bad hosts. Do it before someone else gets stuck staying there.
Old 06-26-2020, 09:50 PM
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sub'd!

i agree, disable wifi / turn off her connection to the thermostats

i'd also check for hidden cameras
Old 06-26-2020, 09:57 PM
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If you set it to 74 and it doesn’t get below 78 what’s the point at setting it at 68?
Old 06-26-2020, 10:15 PM
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Go buy an electric heating pad and tape it over the wifi thermostat. Use the temp control of the heating pad as your new thermostat.

You still get WiFi and she can think the thermostat is set to 74.
Old 06-26-2020, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by pworm14 View Post
Go buy an electric heating pad and tape it over the wifi thermostat. Use the temp control of the heating pad as your new thermostat.

You still get WiFi and she can think the thermostat is set to 74.
Brilliant! And as an added bonus you're consuming even more electricity with the heating pad.

Well played, sir.
Old 06-26-2020, 10:32 PM
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OP, I would do as suggested above and Google how to disable the wifi feature on the thermostat and have a copy of the rental agreement on hand for when she goes nuclear. She sounds cheap and petty. Dig in and l hate to say it....pass the pop corn.


Edit....Holy shit the heating pad idea is epic.
Old 06-26-2020, 10:43 PM
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Can you just pay the difference in the electric bill?

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