How To Delete Your Airbnb Account the Right Way

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Updated: May 8, 2021

Author: Benjamin Harty

Hi, I'm Benjamin, Digital Media Strategist for Skyline STR. I have been involved in content creation for over a decade and love helping people develop strategies to grow their business. My wife and I are AirBnB photographers that are experienced in rental arbitrage and hosting on the platform.

Disclosure:
SkylineSTR.com is a participant in several affiliate programs and may be compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies at no additional cost to you.

It’s unfortunate, but many Airbnb hosts have had to delete their account for one reason or another.

If you’re looking to delete your Airbnb account, you’re in luck. Airbnb makes deactivating an account relatively straightforward and simple. However, deactivating an Airbnb account isn’t the same thing as deleting an account altogether.

To delete your Airbnb, you’ll start by deactivating the account. You can only do this from the Airbnb website; the option isn’t available on the mobile app. After you’ve deactivated your account, you’ll then need to contact Airbnb directly to get them to close it permanently.

In this article, we’ll take you step-by-step through first deactivating and then closing your account completely so you can be sure it doesn’t come back later.

However, you must be sure about deleting your account because you can’t get it back once Airbnb closes it.

Deactivating vs. Deleting on Airbnb: What’s the Difference?

Oftentimes, when we think of closing an account on a social media website or another online service that requires login credentials, it means completely removing all personal information from the site. This includes user profile data and any content you’ve posted to the platform.

When it comes to closing down your Airbnb account, there are two ways to do it. 

The first is to deactivate it. Deactivation is a convenient way to shut down your account, and Airbnb makes it easy to do. However, it won’t permanently close your account. It’ll only put it in a type of stasis. 

Deleting your account is different; it requires you to contact Airbnb directly, and once you’ve deleted it, the account closure is permanent. 

Things To Consider Before Deleting an Airbnb Account

If you’re an Airbnb host, there are several considerations to make before deleting your account. For example, if you delete your account all reservations will be canceled and any reviews or ratings that you have will be gone forever like they never existed.

It’s always worth considering how much effort has already gone into establishing a good reputation on Airbnb before deleting the account.

All Current Reservations Will Be Canceled

The first thing to consider before deleting your Airbnb account is whether or not you have outstanding reservations on file.

Deactivating or deleting an account will cancel all upcoming reservations any guests have scheduled at your property. 

This does more than affect you; it also affects whoever’s reservations you happen to be canceling. Not only does this present the guests with hardship and inconvenience, but it’s also likely to hurt your ratings.

Of course, if you’re permanently deleting your account, this won’t matter. 

However, if you’re only deactivating your account and planning to come back later, this kind of word of mouth could be a killer for future business. 

You’ll Lose Past Records

Have you ever wanted to look back at your Airbnb account and remember certain details about a guest or reservation?

If you delete your account, all previous records will be lost. You won’t have access to an accurate accounting of how much money you’ve made on Airbnb or what kind of ratings you’ve received from past guests.

Whether you deactivate or delete your account, you’ll lose access to the account entirely for some time. If you only deactivate it, you can eventually reactivate it and regain access. However, during the time it’s deactivated, you’ll be unable to view anything that has to do with the account. 

If you delete the account, you’ll lose access to all the information in it forever

That means you can’t get into it if you need to check something for tax purposes or any other reason. It also means there’s nothing to pull up and refer to if you get audited.

If you plan to delete your account forever, we highly recommend printing off anything you might need related to tax purposes beforehand. 

If You Delete, You’ll Lose All Your Ratings and Good Feedback

If you permanently delete your account, the only way to host on Airbnb again is to create a new account and relist everything.

For all intents and purposes, you’ll be a completely new user of the site. You’ll have no feedback, no star ratings, no Superhost status, and nothing else.

You’ll have to build your customer base back from the ground up, which may be a good thing if you received poor ratings from your guests in the past.

Are You Only Wanting To Get Rid of a Listing?

Many people consider deactivating their accounts because they no longer have access to the property they had listed. This is especially true of people who only have a single property listing on the site.

Once they no longer have it, they assume there’s no reason to keep their accounts open any longer. 

That isn’t true.

You could regain your property, eventually come across a new property to host, or you could need to use the site as a guest, which is what we do when we go on vacation.

That’s why Airbnb makes it easy to deactivate a single listing instead of the whole account. 

How To Deactivate a Single Listing

Airbnb gives you three options for shutting down a current property listing. They are (quoting directly from the Airbnb site):

  • Temporarily unlist your space.
  • Permanently deactivate your listing.
  • Snooze your listing for a set period of time.

If you need to remove your listing for a short period to remodel or because you want to use the property yourself, you can snooze it for up to six months. 

You can also temporarily unlist it, leaving yourself the option to reactivate the listing at any time. 

The final option is permanently unlisting the property. These are the steps for doing that:

  1. Visit the “Your Listings” page on Airbnb’s website.
  2. Find the listing you want to deactivate forever; click on the three dots beside it.
  3. Choose “Edit” from the dropdown menu.
  4. Find “Listing Status” and again choose “Edit.”
  5. Select “Change Status.”
  6. Select “Deactivate.”
  7. Follow the step-by-step instructions to deactivate the listing for that property permanently.

Once you’ve done this, you won’t be able to reactivate the listing.

If you want to add it back, you’ll have to relist it manually. It’s important to note that you cannot deactivate, unlist, or snooze a listing that currently has pending reservations.

How To Deactivate Your Airbnb Account

Now that we have a bit more understanding of the consequences, let’s go over the process of deactivating your account, step by step.

Go to Airbnb.com & Log In

The first thing you have to do to deactivate your Airbnb account is to log onto the Airbnb website. All account deactivations must occur using the website; you cannot deactivate or delete your account using the mobile app.  

Once you’ve made it to the Airbnb page, you’ll have to use your username and password to log into your account if you’re not automatically logged in already.  

Go to the Account Overview Page

Once you’ve logged in, your picture or user icon should appear in the top right-hand corner of the screen, along with three horizontal lines.

Click on your account icon to open the dropdown menu. One of the options near the bottom should say “Account.”

Click that option to get into the account overview page to view all of your options.

Find the “Deactivate Your Account” Link

Once you’ve made it to the Account Overview page, you’ll see several different options in square boxes.

Below all those boxed options, two simple text lines read, “Need to deactivate your account? / Take care of that now.”

You’ll click the “Take care of that now” line of text, and it will take you to another page. 

Provide a Reason for the Deactivation

On this page, you’ll have to answer why you’re deactivating your account.

There are four options from which you can choose. They are (quoting directly from the Airbnb website):

  • I have safety or privacy concerns.
  • I can’t host anymore.
  • I can’t comply with Airbnb’s Terms of Service/Community Commitment.
  • Other.

If you select the “Other” option, you’ll see a provided space where you can enter your specific reason behind the deactivation.

This is a good place to be detailed and host, as it helps make Airbnb aware of user concerns and may lead to changes that help improve the site. 

If you’re a host, you can say something like: “We’re tired of being abused by your customer service and policies.” Or if you’re a guest: “WHOA what’s up with these surprise service fee’s?!”

Deactivate Your Account

After you enter your reason and hit continue, Airbnb will take you to a final confirmation screen where you click “Deactivate Account.”

The message on this page reminds you that all profiles and listings associated with your account will disappear and that you won’t be able to access the account or any previous reservation information again. 

If that’s okay with you, hit “Deactivate Account,” and your account will be deactivated effective immediately. 

Reactivating a Deactivated Airbnb Account: Is It Possible?

If you’ve merely deactivated your account, it is possible to reactivate it. But it isn’t instant.

You’ll have to contact Airbnb directly via the Contact Us page on the site and explain to them why you initially deactivated your account and why you want to reactivate it now. 

Sort of like coming back with your hat in your hands and saying, “Please let me back in.” At which point, it is up to them to decide if they want to let you back in.

How To Delete Your Airbnb Account for Good

There are two ways to delete your Airbnb account permanently.

After Deactivating It

The first step to permanently deleting your Airbnb account using this method is to follow the steps above to deactivate it.

Once it’s deactivated, you’ll then move over to the Contact Us page on the Airbnb website and directly reach out to Airbnb staff. 

You have to explain to them why you want to delete your account. They may or may not ask you further questions about your reasons for ending your account with Airbnb. But expect at least some resistance for loss prevention.

They’ll also explain to you that deleting your account is a permanent decision and that you’ll never again be able to access it or any information associated with it.

If you’re okay with that, they’ll officially delete your account.

Note: You don’t necessarily have to deactivate your account before deleting it, but contacting Airbnb to delete your account may take a couple of days.

Deactivating your account first will ensure you won’t receive any reservation requests in the meantime. 

Deleting It Directly

The second way is to go directly to the “Manage My Data” page on Airbnb’s site, which you can find here.

You’ll scroll down until you see the “Delete My Account” option. Once you click it, you’ll have to enter your country of residence. If you’re a United States citizen, you’ll also need to enter your state of residence.

Once you’ve done that and hit “Continue,” the site will redirect you to a page that includes the following message:

“Requesting deletion of your account means that you will no longer be able to use your Airbnb account, and your account will be permanently closed. If you’d prefer to close your account temporarily, deactivating your Airbnb account is a better option.”

You’ll then have the option to deactivate your account instead or permanently delete it.

If you continue deleting your account, you may receive a follow-up email from Airbnb to make sure you really want to delete it. This helps them cut down on people closing other people’s accounts without the account holder’s knowledge. 

Once you receive the email, you’ll have to respond in the affirmative; otherwise, they may not delete it until they actually hear from you.   

Retrieving a Deleted Airbnb Account: Is It Possible?

Once you’ve permanently deleted your Airbnb account, you cannot retrieve or reactivate it.

It, along with all of your listings and records, is completely gone from the site like a fart lost in the wind.

After deleting your account, the only thing you can do is to set up a new account, starting from scratch with no memory of your past sins. 

Does Deleting an Account Remove Your Information From Airbnb?

Airbnb will delete the majority of your personal information from their website once you completely delete your account. However, there are certain things that Airbnb must retain even after you’ve closed down your account.

These items are kept for legal reasons only and won’t be available or accessible by anyone else through the website.

Does Airbnb Sell Your Personal Information?

However, that doesn’t mean Airbnb won’t continue you to use your personal information and sell it to third parties. For example, in their privacy policy Airbnb states multiple times that they share your information with third parties, and may even sell it should they simply be “contemplating” a transaction:

“If Airbnb undertakes or is involved in any merger, acquisition, reorganization, sale of assets, bankruptcy, or insolvency event, then we may sell, transfer or share some or all of our assets, including your information in connection with such transaction or in contemplation of such transaction (e.g., due diligence)”

https://www.airbnb.com/help/article/2855/privacy-policy

Our interpretation: all a business needs to do is say “Hey, we want to buy some of them personal assets you got.” Wink wink, nudge nudge.

Don’t be angry though, Facebook has been doing this to you for years and no one seems to be complaining in any meaningful capacity.

What Do You Lose When You Delete Your Account?

When you permanently delete your Airbnb account, you lose more than just the account and a way of making extra money. You also lose:

  • All of your reviews and ratings
  • All of your records
  • All of your customer interactions
  • The client/customer base you’ve built over the years
  • All of the work you’ve done creating your listings
  • Your ability to use Airbnb’s site to reserve properties for yourself (unless you have a separate account as a renter)

That’s a lot of information to lose, especially if you’ve been an Airbnb host for quite some time.

Whenever possible, it’s better to permanently delete a single listing or temporarily deactivate your account until you want to use it again. 

Advantages of Keeping or Temporarily Deactivating an Account

If you choose to keep your account active but deactivate or delete your listings, you can still have 100% access to the site and your account, including all your records and interactions with customers.

You lose absolutely nothing, and no one can rent your properties in the meantime. 

Additionally, suppose you deactivate your account instead of deleting it. In that case, you can always come back later and reactivate it, which means you still have access to any of your records for tax purposes whenever you need them.

Additionally, you don’t have to worry about dealing with guests or property listings in the meantime. 

Finally, if you permanently delete your account and then regret that decision later for whatever reason, you have no options to get it back.

You can set up a new account, but you’ll be starting entirely from scratch, having to rely on the kindness of strangers to take a chance on your zero-review property. 

Reasons for Permanently Deleting Your Airbnb Account

We’d say that in about 95% of cases, it would behoove you to keep your account or, at the very most, deactivate it temporarily rather than deleting it.

Few reasons would necessitate a total deletion of your account. However, there are circumstances in which you might be better off deleting your account and starting from scratch.

Identity Theft

If you’ve recently been the target of identity theft, you may want to delete your account.

In instances of identity theft, it’s often best to delete everything and start over because this will save you from having to worry about who might be using your Airbnb account and why. If you delete your account, someone who might have stolen it can’t access any of the personal information associated with that account.

Hacking

Even if you haven’t been a victim of identity theft, you may still want to close your Airbnb profile if you find that someone has hacked into it and done anything damaging.

You may also consider closing the account if someone has hacked into a different website, such as your email, that might provide them with a way into your Airbnb profile. 

In mild hacking cases, such as someone stealing your password, you can probably be safe simply by changing your password and updating a few security features on the site.

However, if the hacking has gotten bad enough, it may be better to close the account and start fresh. 

You may be wondering what possible damage a hacked account can do to you, and the dangers can range from the account being used for fraud, to identity theft or harassment.

Death

If you’re working on behalf of a deceased loved one, you’ll want to close any open Airbnb account the person has.

Even if the person left the listed properties to you in his or her will, you’d still need to close his or her account and create your own, relisting the property under your name and profile for tax purposes.

People may send messages to someone who is no longer around, and it can help keep your property listing safe.

Is Permanently Deleting Your Airbnb Account the Way To Go?

Again, except in extreme cases like those three listed above, I’d highly recommend not deleting your Airbnb account, at least not permanently.

Deactivation achieves almost all the same goals, except for removing your personal information entirely from the site, and is much simpler to undo if you decide you want back into your account later. 

If you decide to delete your account permanently, we advise you to make copies of any financial information you may need for self-employment or yearly taxes.

We also urge you to make copies of financial data going back to your first rental date just if you’re later audited on a previous year’s taxes. 

Furthermore, if you’re having any legal issues with Airbnb or a previous guest, you should also make backup records. You’ll want copies of any communications sent or received between you and the other party just in case you need them for litigation purposes.  

Final Thoughts

Permanently deleting your account from Airbnb is now easier than it’s ever been.

However, the delete option is permanent. You need to be sure that you want to lose perpetual access to your account and all your records before taking this option. 

If you’re not 100% sure that you want to close your account, there are plenty of other options to choose from.

You can deactivate your account until you’re ready to host again or until you decide you want to shut it down officially. Additionally, you can deactivate or permanently delete a single property listing from your account instead.

For more helpful tips and tricks regarding hosting on Airbnb, check out our blog.

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