With the sound of calypso and the smell of jerk chicken in the air it can mean only one thing: Notting Hill Carnival. While this brings delight for the nearly two and a half million people who attend, it can bring worry for sharing economy hosts opening up their homes. GUARDHOG the pay-per-stay home-sharing insurance specialist has revealed some top tips for keeping your home safe from party-goers during carnival weekend.
Co-founder Humphrey Bowles said: “Notting Hill Carnival is a time for celebration, but without raining on the parade, we know the risks that people take when letting their home out during these big calendar moments – and the damage that can be done. So, we’ve pulled together some top tips to help people protect their homes and help both hosts and guests leave the festivities unscathed.”
Top tips from GUARDHOG:
- Make a weekender of it: It’s a good idea in the first instance to only accept bookings for two to three nights, rather than just one, to avoid ‘pop-up parties’. Multi-night bookings also have the additional benefits of less frequent cleaning requirements, and overall cause less wear and tear.
- Do your research: With so many home sharing sites on the web, finding the perfect place to advertise your home can be overwhelming, so make sure you do your research. It’s all about matching where you advertise with what sort of host you want to be. Websites like AltoVita are targeted towards business travellers and families, making it less likely to attract party people. Knowing what type of guest you would like to stay is key when researching.
- Rules are (not) there to be broken: Setting house rules is vital when it comes to preventing damage. Agree upon set rules with your guests before arrival, these can be in addition to the common house rules such as no pets, smoking etc.
- Vet your guests: Always make sure you know who’s coming into your home and what their purpose for staying is. If you are concerned about guests hosting a party or event in your home, ask how many guests they plan on having throughout the duration of their stay. If anything makes you feel uncomfortable you can of course decline the booking.
- Love thy neighbour: Being a good neighbour is key when having guests stay in your home especially when you’re not in the property. Be sure to prepare your friends over the fence for potential guests you’ll have staying and provide a contact number for them to get in touch should anything go awry.
- Damage limitation: If you are opening up your home frequently and have concerns about potential damage or noise complaints you could consider investing in surveillance technology. Cameras can be used to detect damage and some noise detectors can identify exact sounds such as fire alarms. Most of this technology can be managed from your mobile these days so you can rest easy when away – but be sure to check with surveillance laws before installing anything in your home.
- The price is right: Don’t feel guilty about upping prices around key calendar events such as Notting Hill Carnival. It’s a really good way to keep party animals at bay who are looking for a cheap stay for a big night, at your expense.
- Get covered: It’s important to remember that short term letting is a commercial activity and not covered under most normal home insurance policies. Here at GUARDHOG, we offer a variety of services to ensure that your home is protected while renting it out. This includes our HOSTCOVER option from just 78p a day* to cover you and your home from a series of potential problems that can occur when guests stay.
So whether it’s having people to stay during Notting Hill Carnival, or renting out your home during the final days of summer – GUARDHOG has you covered this season.