Deputies Investigate Furniture, Appliance Theft From Airbnb Rental

Nov 9, 2018, 8:04 PM | Updated: Nov 10, 2018, 5:39 pm

PARK CITY, Utah – A Summit County homeowner was out thousands of dollars after an Airbnb renter allegedly stole furniture and appliances while staying at the residence.

Lieutenant Andrew Wright of the Summit County Sheriff’s Office said the homeowner used a property management company to rent a townhome near Kimball Junction on Airbnb.

Wright said a renter stayed in the home from November 4 through November 7. When the property manager inspected the townhome after the renter left, thousands of dollars’ worth of property was missing.

“There’s a lot of furniture, TVs, bed furniture, kitchenware, a lot of utensils, stuff like that are missing from this property,” Wright said. “We’re talking large appliances. It had to have taken whoever came and took all these items, they had to have had a large vehicle in order to get this out, or make several trips,”

Investigators were looking into whether or not the renter used a legitimate identification so they can try to track them down. Airbnb offers its hosts some coverage, so the homeowner was working with them to see what can be done.

Insurance agent Morgan Newitt said a lot of people in Park City only live in the area part time and can make a lot of money renting their places out.

“If you do it right, you can make a nice profit, so people are definitely interested,” Newitt said.

While Airbnb offers some coverage, Newitt said it was also important for property owners to check their homeowner’s insurance as well. She said she had a client who lived below someone renting out their home. She said another renter in that home started a fire, and water from the sprinkler system flooded her client’s home.

“Unfortunately, the person who actually was insured and had the damage caused, their company decided to deny the claim because it was rented out on an Airbnb basis and their policies clearly state they do not cover Airbnb,” Newitt said.

Between ski season and the Sundance Film Festival, the winter months can be very lucrative for people who rent out their homes. Newitt encourages people to take advantage of the opportunity, but not before checking with their agents.

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Deputies Investigate Furniture, Appliance Theft From Airbnb Rental