Airbnb guest squats at home for 500 days then demands owner pay her $100,000 to relocate

Airbnb guest squats at home for 500 days then demands owner pay her $100,000 to relocate
Take a look inside Shrek's swamp now available to rent on Airbnb
Tiny Ark / Airbnb

An Airbnb guest became the absolute tenant from hell after refusing to leave the property and squatted for 500 days, before requesting £82,000 from the owner to relocate.

People letting out their homes for a pre-determined length of stay has become commonplace in recent years thanks to the help of services such as Airbnb. While most stays go smoothly, there are occasions that are extremely shocking, as one guest found a hidden camera pointed at the shower and another found a series of secret tunnels and peepholes.

But what many hosts won’t anticipate is that someone books a stay and just… refuses to vacate the house.

That is precisely what happened to the owner of a luxurious guest house overlooking the hills of Los Angeles when a guest massively outstayed their welcome, squatting for more than a year and a half. To add insult to injury, the unwanted house guest is refusing to leave until the homeowner gives her a $100,000 relocation fee.

In September 2021, Elizabeth Hirschhorn rented Sascha Jovanovic’s guest home in Brentwood for a period of six months, for $105 a night. Court documents show that, with fees included, the total stay amounted to $20,793.

Despite Hirschhorn’s stay coming to an end in April 2022, she has continued to live there rent-free and appears to be refusing to leave.

What’s worse for homeowner Jovanovic is that a judge agreed with Hirschhorn and claims he has no legal reason to evict her, under Los Angeles’ newly adopted Just Cause Ordinance. They explained he would have to pay a fee to evict her.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Hirschhorn’s attorney, Amanda Seward, wrote in an email to the lawyer of Jovanovic: “$100,000 is [Jovanovic’s] cheapest way of getting out of the whole ordeal.”

They continued: “It is the home of the tenant until the landlord gets a judgment, however distasteful that is to your client.”

Jovanovic claims that when it became clear that Hirschhorn was not going to vacate the property at the end of her stay, he reluctantly gave her some more time in the hopes she would find a new place to live.

“She asked for more time, but I told her it wasn’t possible since I had other Airbnb reservations coming up,” Jovanovic explained to the Times. “But then I tried to be nice and give her an extra few weeks.”

Hirschhorn still refused to leave and instead notified the city that the shower in the unit was unpermitted and that the property was unapproved for occupancy.

The unwanted tenant then allegedly refused Jovanovic access to the unit to fix issues that would make it compliant. He was then fined $600.

Jovanovic is now suing Hirschhorn in two different lawsuits. Hirschhorn has also filed a countersuit. All the while, she is still living in Jovanovic’s property.

In other Airbnb news, people were delighted to find they could stay in Shrek's swamp home in the Scottish Highlands recently - would you make a reservation there?

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