Airbnb nightmare renters leave Calgary home trashed

A Calgary family says their hardwood floors are lifting from "pools of alcohol" and someone left chicken drumsticks in their shoes following an Airbnb rental that turned disastrous.

Family finds condoms plugging toilets and chicken drumsticks in shoes

Airbnb nightmare renters leave home trashed

8 years ago
Duration 2:15
Calgary family finds condoms plugging toilets and chicken drumsticks in shoes

A Calgary family says their home has been destroyed by guests who rented it on the popular accommodation website Airbnb.

"Our hardwood floors are all popping because there are pools of liquor. There's glass shards, there's dent in our walls, toilets flooded and plugged with condoms," said homeowner Star King.

King says she agreed to rent her house in northwest Calgary to four adults, who said they were in town for a wedding.

She and her husband, Mark, turned their keys over to the renters on Saturday night and went to stay with their in-laws in another part of the city.

King says shortly after, she started receiving texts from neighbours, telling her the police had arrived.

She was told that a "huge luxury party bus pulled up" and 100 people piled into her home. 

The King family had to plead with the renters to pack up and leave, who she said were "just totally wasted."

"They just put their cigarettes out wherever they felt like it," said Star King. (Mark King)

"They threw paint all over my works that I was going to sell for probably a couple thousand. Just totally disrespectful behaviour," said King, who is an artist.

We came and wished the home was burnt down to ashes. It would have felt way better.- Star King, Airbnb host

She overheard Calgary police at the scene describe the situation as a "drug-induced orgy."

Airbnb spokesman Jakob Kerr says the company has banned this guest from renting again through the website.

Mike and Star King survey the damage in their home, which was vandalized over the weekend. (CBC)

"We have zero tolerance for this kind of behaviour and our team is working quickly to make this right," Kerr wrote in an email statement.

"Over 35 million guests have stayed on Airbnb, and property damage is extremely rare."

Quebec is already looking into beefing up rules surrounding rentals to tourists without a permit. Next month, the province plans to table a bill to regulate online home-sharing services, such as Airbnb.

The King family says they had no issues when they rented out their house two weeks before through Airbnb and have also used the service, many times, themselves.

"We came and wished the home was burnt down to ashes. It would have felt way better," said King.

The Kings found their couch cushions thrown on the floor in their kitchen, covered in mayonnaise. (Mike Symington/CBC)

Airbnb has told CBC News that the King family will be reimbursed through its Host Guarantee insurance, which provides up to $1 million "to eligible properties in the rare event of guest damages which are not resolved directly with the guest."

The company also says it's offering full assistance to law enforcement in the investigation of the incident. 

Calgary police are investigating and estimate the damage is more than $50,000.

"In the 27 years of policing that I've done, I've never seen a home so badly damaged from a weekend party, and of course, with this kind of rental situation," said Staff Sgt. Jim Leung.

Leung says police are trying to locate the man who originally rented the property and intend to charge him with mischief over $5,000 for causing damage to the property.