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  • Charli

City Centre – Sleeps 4!

I bought a flat in Cannonmills 9 yrs ago with the settlement from the end of my first marriage.

I have had a wide variety of guests and tenants over the years, some much more accommodating than others.

My easiest guests have respected the flat, looked after it and kept it as they found it. Unfortunately I have only had a small handful of long term tenants for whom this was true, and a pattern emerged that the most difficult tenants were the often ones who had asked a lot of questions at the beginning and then went mysteriously quiet.

On one occasion I was left bedding that had been used extensively during massages and so was saturated in oils. I had to throw the whole lot out: duvet, linen, pillows, the lot. She was then horrified when I retained a £50 deposit to cover my costs. In truth, they had left their very expensive tents behind so I held them ransom until they paid.

Another tenant ‘skipped bail’ as it were, having not paid for any fuel or council tax. It took nearly 6 months of chasing to get the full amount from her and in the end when she refused to pay I was able to keep the full deposit. The irony is that she was a Yoga instructor so some day Karma will find her.

It was after this that I decided I had had enough and so set about putting the property on the market. It is a traditional 1 bed flat in a Victorian tenement and I have spent a lot of money bringing it up to date, and so was disappointed with the suggested asking price. I didn’t get a decent offer and was feeling very despondent when L told me about Airbnb. She helped me set up a profile and within days I was getting requests for short holiday lets. You can find it un Edinburgh/City Centre – Sleeps 4!

In that time I have had too many guests to count, and the majority of them have been delightful, thoughtful and appreciative. I am here just now waiting for a group of four who have been friends since school.

I have also used Airbnb and Wimdu when looking for houses to rent for a short break or holiday. It’s a community that works, although having back-to-back guest in August will be exhausting, but fun.

City Centre Sleeps 4

Where are you now with no roof over your head?

as the wind howls and the rain falls,

you face a long night of dread.

Will they kick you, spit at you, move you on?

Or talk to you stay with you, sit in the sun?

Your bags and blankets are grubby and worn

and on cold winter days,

you yearn for some warmth,

from a coffee, a tea, something warm to wear.

Sit quietly, peacefully, hiding a tear.

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