Damages to hotels, accidental or on purpose, can be very costly. Hotels can spend upwards of $250,000 annually for more severe damages to the carpet or furniture. Even more minor damages, such as a broken wine glass or lamp, can cost anywhere between $5,000 – $12,000. These damages can be highly costly to hotels, especially smaller ones. Of course, accidents are bound to happen. Hoteliers understand that a glass will break from time to time. The real problems come from guests who have little regard for the room and other guests. They may accidentally break furniture or leave cigarette burns on the curtains. While it is not possible to completely prevent hotel damages, there are steps to take that can minimize their likelihood. The first thing to do is identify the most costly damages to your hotel, so you know to prioritize these first.
Accidental damage or malicious intent?
It is essential to understand if the guests damaged your hotel room accidentally or if it was more or less on purpose. Sometimes, this can mean disregarding room rules and doing as they please. Occasionally, guests may throw a party in the hotel room or cause such severe damage that the room requires a few days of repair. These are guests who you may consider acting with malicious behavior. When damages occur from malicious behavior, hoteliers are far more likely to require the guest to pay for the damages. If the guests were charged a security deposit, the hoteliers would likely keep some or all of the security deposit charged. If accidental damages occur, the best thing to do is inform the hoteliers. They already understand accidents happen from time to time but are even more likely to forgive the damages if you tell them what happened.
Damage to furniture
Damage to furniture usually requires replacing that furniture, and this is something that can take time. If you cannot fix or replace the furniture, it can put the hotel room out of commission. The cost of replacing furniture varies from establishment to establishment. Replacing a bed can cost anywhere from $700 – $3,000. If a sofa is damaged in some way, replacing it can cost between $600 – $3,500. This can cost your business thousands in the future to replace the furniture. These situations can also disrupt your booking schedule, causing you to lose even more. If you are at full occupancy and cannot put incoming guests into a new room, it could even force you to lose out on incoming and potential returning guests.
Having a room go out of commission due to damages that resulted in necessary furniture replacement may also negatively affect your employees. If your team is stretched thin, they now have a lot of additional customer service work to do while taking care of all current guests. This can exhaust and stress your employees and can result in more mistakes.
Damage from smoking
Damage from smoking, whether solicited or unsolicited, is a considerable cost for hotels. This is because the room now requires extra, extensive cleaning to be done. These cleaning materials to remove the smell are more expensive than standard cleaning products. Additionally, the smell clings to all the sheets and the paint on the wall. Guests who smoke in their hotel rooms can sometimes leave cigarette burns on chairs, sheets, or curtains. Having to replace all of these items becomes very expensive and requires more time from housekeeping to clean the rooms. It can be very problematic if a guest has smoked in a non-smoking room and hoteliers expect to check another guest into that room soon. This can cause the room to be ready late or be out of commission for an extra day. This is very costly to hotels because they may lose out on a returning customer, now have to pay for more expensive cleaning products, and must pay their cleaning team more for the additional time worked.
How to prevent costly damages in your hotel
There is no way to completely prevent damages from occurring within your hotel. However, there are preventative measures you can take that can decrease the likelihood of malicious damages taking place. A great tool to utilize to do this is Alertify. Alertify is a small, plug-in room monitoring device. Alertify monitors noise decibel levels, cigarette smoke, occupancy, and temperature changes. Hoteliers receive customizable notifications about what is happening and where if any of these activities occur while Alertify is installed. This allows hoteliers to stop any potential malicious damages before they occur or other guests file complaints. Hoteliers also have access to an online portal to view reports of what happened and when. Now, hoteliers can gather the proof they need when reporting damages while allowing them to be more hands-off. Protect your hotel today from potential damages with Alertify.