Tag Archives: airbnb

NYC Landlords Busted For Renting Illegal Rooftop Shacks On Airbnb

If you see an Airbnb listing for a New York City apartment with rooftop views, be warned that you may be paying hundreds of dollars a night to stay in an illegally constructed shack underneath a bridge.

According to the New York Daily News, the landlord of an industrial building in Brooklyn was caught renting out poorly constructed, unlawful rooftop rooms to tourists through Airbnb.

When inspectors showed up to Brooklyn’s DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) neighborhood to investigate these high-price hovels, they found three of the five rooftop units occupied by paying customers.

One of them was actually asleep when city officials barged in and snapped this photo:


The building’s certificate of occupancy calls for manufacturing on the first and second floor.

“With illegal construction, including dangerous and unpermitted gas and electrical hookups, the property owner and an Airbnb host showed an astonishing disregard for the safety of visitors to the city,” Christian Klossner, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement, said. “These rooms, on the roof of a manufacturing building in Dumbo, offer one more example of how dangerous illegal rentals can be.”

Listings for the rooms — which have since been removed from Airbnb — promised “amazing views” and “rooftop access.” Each rental had one or two beds, bathrooms, TVs, microwaves, and small sitting areas.

What those rooms didn’t have, according to the mayor’s office, was required exits, fire alarms, and authorized gas lines.

Airnb won’t be held liable for the law-breaking listing, however, after the company settled a lawsuit with the state of New York last year that said any penalties for illegal rentals would only apply to individual hosts.


NYC Landlords Busted For Renting Illegal Rooftop Shacks On Airbnb


Airbnb Bans Host Who Dumped Guest Because She’s Asian

This ski trip went downhill and took a racist turn fast. Airbnb says it has permanently banned a host from the platform after she canceled a guest’s reservation minutes before her arrival because the guest was Asian. And we know that was the host’s reason, because she said so.


“One word says it all,” the host wrote in a text message to the would-be guest. “Asian.”

Airbnb told The Huffington Post the incident happened in February near Big Bear, California. It has gained traction now after a video taken of the tearful guest the night of the racist exchange has gone viral. Airbnb declined to identify either the guest or the host to HuffPost, citing company privacy policy.


“The four of us made a reservation on Airbnb about a month ago,” the denied guest says in the video as snow falls around her, “and I asked the woman who is the host if two more friends would be OK … she said that’s fine, we just have to pay more money.

I wouldn’t rent to u if u were the last person on earth.

“So we’re driving up, we think everything is fine, we’re ready for this ski trip in Big Bear … there were flash flood warnings all day, [and] I asked the woman again, is it OK if my two friends come, like, should we give you cash, or how much did you say it was again?

“And she says, ‘Absolutely not…. You must be high if you think that that would be OK in the busiest weekend in Big Bear.’ Then she said, ‘No, we’re done,’ and she canceled the trip.”

Taken aback, the guest responded by informing the woman her actions would be reported to Airbnb, to which she replied in a text: “Go ahead. I wouldn’t rent to u if u were the last person on earth.” Then she texted, “One word says it all. Asian.”

One word says it all. Asian.

In additional screenshots of the conversation, provided by the guest as proof, the host wrote, “And I will not allow this country to be told what to do by foreigners. It’s why we have trump.”

In the video, the distraught guest says she’s an American citizen. Not that that mattered to the host, who apparently deemed her a foreigner based only on her profile picture.

“What they see is that I’m Asian. What they see is my race,” she said, sobbing, “and this is how we get treated. It stings.”


In a statement to The Huffington Post, Airbnb spokesman Christopher Nulty called the host’s behavior “abhorrent and unacceptable.” Nulty added the company reached out to the guest as soon as it learned of the incident and offered to rebook her somewhere else, but she’d already made other plans.