Be careful who you rent your home to.
That’s the message from London police, who say seven people are facing charges after a wild after-graduation party in June did $80,000 to a south London home rented through AirBnB.
Police said they received multiple 911 calls June 27 about a large party at a home in the Grand Avenue and Ridout Street area.
When officers arrived at the scene, they found dozens of teenagers and significant damage to the home — damage that was later estimated to be worth $80,000.
As a result of a two-month investigation, police announced on Tuesday that seven people, five of them young adults along with two youths, have been charged with one count of mischief exceeding $5,000.
On Wednesday, police announced charges against an additional adult and young person. In total, police say “six 18-year-olds and three young people” have been charged in the case.
The property’s owner, Tyler McBride, told 980 CFPL the occupants had booked the home earlier in the day. In their release, police said it was believed a young couple from out of town would be staying at the rental.
McBride said he was awoken around 1:30 a.m. by a police officer banging on his door.
“They said, ‘you got an AirBnB downtown?’ I said, ‘yeah.’ They said, ‘well you better come down and take a look at it. They trashed it.'”
Under the impression the damage would be similar to previous incidents at the property — a broken window here, a hole in the wall there — McBride says the actual extent of the damage was staggering.
“It was a little hard to swallow,” he said. “Every time you turned the corner there was more.”
McBride said the damage inflicted on the house was diverse but also peculiar. While the kitchen was destroyed, and wall holes and broken glass littered the house, the upstairs bathroom was untouched. A linen closet, protected with a simple curtain, was also left alone.
“For whatever reason they either got tired, or they were selective in what they wanted to do,” he said.
Of the $80,000 damage cost, McBride said about $60,000 would be for repair costs with $6,000-8,000 for ‘chattel’ — “your couch, your pictures, dishes, the mattresses” — on top of lost income from the property being off the market and cancelled reservations.
While AirBnB has reimbursed them for previous incidents involving damage, McBride says an $80,000 bill is a whole other matter.
“It’s a little bit harder, I think, for anyone to kick out $80,000 as opposed to $1,500… so they may be a little reluctant.”
Despite that, he says he’s been in contact with the company and with Crawford, the claims management firm, to work toward a solution.
“I think the most frustrating part of it is the fact that someone has come around to actually consciously making that decision to cause that damage unduly on someone else,” McBride said. “It wasn’t a matter of the party getting a little bit out of hand, this was very intentional.”
WATCH: (Oct. 22, 2018) Consumer Matters: Vancouver man’s Airbnb nightmare