While I appreciate Marla's candor, I'd like to share a few facts that counter her criticism and accusation:
- Marla messaged me about the dog waste and ants after checking out, so I was not afforded an opportunity to address the issues until it was too late. Given that it was a holiday weekend, I replied within 36 hours to her message, but again, she was gone by the time she reported the issues. In my response, I asked Marla to please let me know if she felt underserved because of these inconveniences so we could discuss a refund. She did not respond.
- While there was dog waste in the yard, it was just that - in the yard. Guests access the back house via a paved driveway and stone pathway, never needing to step into the lawn. But noted; I am certainly capable of keeping a better eye on the yard.
- Before Marla's stay, we never had pest issues, and once I became aware of the ant situation (again, after check out), a hidden bait trap solved the problem immediately. The next guests (who checked in two hours later) were none the wiser. To avoid this issue in the future, I have updated the visitor's guide asking pet owners to please avoid leaving food out for extended periods of time.
- Regarding her comment "except to keep requesting the pet fee," I submitted the money request through Airbnb just once. It was the only time I mentioned the fee post booking. Like standard hotel/motel chains, additional service fees are assessed after checking in; I do this in order to avoid refunds should people's plan change. Marla on multiple occasions commented about the pricey pet fee ($50), both before and after booking, noting that it was "+75 percent of the rental fee itself." I wasn't sure if she wanted me to increase the nightly rate so that the pet fee seemed smaller by comparison or lower the pet fee because she was only staying one night - as if my sanitation measures change when a dog is in the house for one versus three nights. Regardless, I would consider $103 more than a fair rate for lodging on the Fourth of July with a pet.
- It's a shame that Marla and her husband found the six blocks to Fort Worth's Magnolia Avenue too far to be considered walking distance. It's a lovely walk through the Southside neighborhood to some of the city's most popular restaurants. I understand the heat affects people's desires to walk, but it doesn't change the distance on the map (Avoca Coffee is 0.6 miles away; Ellerbe Fine Foods is 0.7 miles away; Spiral Diner and Bakery is 0.6 miles away).
I hope this feedback is helpful for future guests. I take great satisfaction in carefully serving this traveling community, and when opportunities arise for improvement, I'm all ears! So here's to onward and upward!