The short-term rental firm Airbnb will conduct a review of every property it lists on its platform, CEO Brian Chesky said at a conference in Manhattan Wednesday. The new initiative will begin at the end of next year.
Airbnb will verify the accuracy of photographs, addresses, and other information that is posted on every property listed at its site. It will also verify the identification of hosts and certify that all of the listings meet its safety standards.
“We’re going to make sure we can stand behind every single listing, every single host,” Chesky said at the DealBook conference. “We want to give peace of mind to our guests.”
The company intends to use a combination of remote technology inspections and verifications from its community, an Airbnb spokesman told The New York Times.
Airbnb’s announcement comes days after five people were killed at a party in an Airbnb rental home in Northern California on Halloween night.
Chesky said the company also will be starting a hotline to address any concerns from neighbors living next to an Airbnb. He said that any guest who checks into a property that does not match the description on the website will be issued a full refund.
“Many of us in this industry over the last 10 years are going from a hands-off model, where the internet is an immune system, to realizing that’s not really enough,” Chesky says. “We have to take more responsibility for the stuff on our platform. This has been a gradual, maybe too gradual, transition for our industry.”