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Everything posted by Coco

  1. I'm sorry?  Is this a B&B thread or are we in a parallel universe Seems like some people can't cope with a few home truths now and again.
  2.  I feel sorry for the children. No! No!  I do. It isn't their faults.  It is their blooming lazy want to be best friends with my kids idle fat arsed parents. You are SOOOOOOOOOO RIGHT!! That and it being against the law to clout them when they are being tooooooooo much. Believe me.  My daughters just needed a look. As I did.    AND SO DID I!!!!   God, that look from my mum Bring back the guillotine.  Hanging.  Smacked bums. Ban them from everywhere until they can be behave but first give the parents lessons in parenting as I think they need them.       Yet again, spot on, it's not the poor kids fault, it's the parents.
  3. Don't worry Chris, Coco will take him, she has offered to take all the other pain in the butts, well except children anyway It takes all sorts, we've had a lot of experience of Republicans, of which he is clearly one.  We offer a safe haven for Republicans and Democrats alike.  We don't differentiate between the two.  We find that at the end of the day they all tend to fly the flag and are proud of their country, which is nothing to be ashamed of, but you will always find one pain in the ass, be they American, British, French, Belgian, or under 10 years of age.  Sorry you had a bad experience, s**t happens sometimes. 
  4. For their behaviour yes, but for their education, well that well and truly lies with teachers, but in a B&B thread, let's not even go there, as Miki said, just a throw away line.....
  5. With the experiences of two summers now clearly proving to me that the path we intend to take next year is the right one for us, when starting this topic I half expected a tirrade of comments telling me that I wasn't offering a good service by excluding children, that I shouldn't generalise, that I would lose business etc etc.  I didn't realise there were so many like-minded people around. Instead of being subtle about whether we are "full" or not next year, perhaps I ought to turn this into a positive marketing point.  After all, the main comment we get in our visitors book is about the beautiful tranquil location and how people have thoroughly enjoyed the peacefulness of the place.  So if I add to this by saying we have no "noise pollution" from young kids, I may actually INcrease the bookings dramatically!
  6. I am interested to know if you would say anything to these people before they leave? I wish I could say that I had, especially when mum said she'd had such a lovely time that they'd like to come again!!! Yes of course she did, she totally abdicated any responsibility for the children or their behaviour. I'm afraid I just smiled and said, yes love to see you.  When in my head I was making a mental note to be totally full for the whole of next August!  What I should have said was, "not on your nelly.  Or at least, not until your children have had a 500% improvement in their behaviour"  Perhaps if a few more people reacted like that people would be forced to look to themselves and their children and make the necessary improvements to make them socially acceptable.
  7. I think its a little unfair to differentiate between English, Scottish and Welsh children, they are just people and I have certainly met families with very different types of family from all nationalities. Well yes Gay, in theory you are absolutely right.  However, we can only speak from experience and sadly, very sadly, our experience has not been that 80%, 90% or even 95% of the English families that have stayed with us have been bad, it has been ABSOLUTELY 100%!!!  How many other nationalities have had children who play up?  ABSOLUTELY NONE.  They can be boisterous, they are often told by their parents to stop doing things, the difference is a) they take notice of their parents and b) their parents stop them before they have even begun to wind me up, after all, they are children, and they are on holiday! Practice your stern voice - less Mary Poppins and more Cruella Deville Something my granddad taught me when I was little was that a pet could not understand the meaning of the words but the tone of the voice.  When I was a children's nurse I found this to work perfectly - it's not what you say, it's the way that you say it.  When I am telling any children the rules I always use my stern, serious, step out of line and you're dead voice.  It's the looks that you get from the parents that let you know that they don't like the tone you are taking with their precious little darlings.
  8. Just for the record, I think it's totally out of order to tar all the police with the same brush.  Trouble is, it's an easy profession to pick on, because so often they have to enforce laws, like parking and speeding that people don't like.  Of course there are a few bent ones, but the majority do an excellent job in very difficult circumstances, as we've recently seen in London.  My dad, incidentally, was a policeman in London during the 50's and early 60's.  He knew of policemen who did things like plant dope on young lads and they were as much hated by their colleagues as the general public.  My mum was also totally ignored at work because unfortunately they were living in a pretty rough part of London, where most people were criminals (there we go, another sweeping generalisation ) and none of her colleauges would talk to her because she was a rozzer's wife! Personally, when I see some young people, I could have a pop at the atrocious teaching abilities of that profession.  But then there are as many bright and intelligent kids around who disprove the theory that all teachers are rubbish!
  9. we do get the odd French lovers who stay in their room for up to three days only surfacing to go for a quick meal somewhere, nice good guests as you never see them! We've got some of those too Lizzie - and they tend to come out of season as well.  And they're polite enough to let us know in advance that they won't be wanting breakfast, towels or anything else for that matter.  They probably enjoy the fact that the hoover and radio are on too!!!    As you say, good guests - money for doing nothing!
  10. We've tried... but we just can't stand it any more!!!!   ENGLISH children under the age of SEVEN.  Just what has happened to parents' ability to discipline them?????? I'm afraid that next year, unless we find that by the end of July we are still empty in August, we will not be accepting English families with young children.  It may sound racist, but the facts are there for all to see.  They just don't know how to behave and the parents don't correct them. We had a couple of horrors last year and my husband wanted to say no to such bookings this year but I told him that in a new business we could not afford to be so choosey.  A few weeks ago, following some AWEFUL experiences, we said that we wouldn't take any more in the future.  THEN.... last Saturday we had a family booked in for one night plus dinner - 4 year old and 7 year old.  We were both absolutely dreading it, and what a delight!!!  we would have missed out on a truly wonderful experience and meeting a delightful family - but....... they were WELSH, not English, so cannot redress the balance.  The French kids are lovely, the Scots kids who have stayed here have been lovely, but WHAT IS WRONG WITH ENGLISH PEOPLE????  Have they forgotten all manners and respect for other people's property?  Do they think that for a few euros they have bought the right to come in and attempt to wreck your home and spoil the enjoyment of anyone else staying here, who has also paid? I suppose I am ranting a little more than I may otherwise have done because my nerves and patience are in tatters this morning, after the family from HELL  A five year old and seven year old who charged around the house, jumped on the furniture with trainers on, went tearing up a totally separate staircase to their own and went crashing into our other guests bedroom (who were fortunately out!)  I told them to come downstairs IMMEDIATELY but the mum just sort of whined at them that they should really come back down but in such an ineffectual voice that no one would have taken a blind bit of notice of her.  They then went marching into MY bedroom and when I told them NO they proceeded to ask why not, they could if they wanted.  Mum didn't contradict them.  SO, the net result, I had to lock myself IN my own bedroom when I went to change for dinner, and I had to lock the room when I came out of it.  And I refuse to live like that in my own home for ANYONE Dinner was a nightmare!  Both kids DEMANDING our attention for the whole meal, then, even when they were sat down in front of the DVD player to watch a film they still kept interupting the adult conversation or turning the volume up so loud that we had to shout above it. Fortunately, our Belgian guests, who had been with us for 4 nights had decided to go out to dinner but we had suggested that on their return they should join us for coffee and a nightcap, which being very sociable people, they were delighted to do.  However, when they returned and saw these two obnoxious little b******s laying across the two settees in the living room, with trainers on the cushions, they said they were tired and would go straight to their room.  Now my husband had a legitimate reason to turn the volume down again, but within seconds it was turned way up.  In the end he really shouted at the children (in front of their parents) and told them that they had to respect that there were other people in the house, who wanted to go to sleep.  Parents reaction:  nothing - no backing my husband up at all, they just seemed oblivious to the whole thing. Now although this latest situation is probably the worst we have experienced, and is obviously foremost in my mind, it is not, sadly, that unusual.  This morning our Belgian guests, who until today, had taken breakfast at 9.30 each morning, were down at 8.30, having heard the English family request breakfast for 9.30 themselves.  I apologised for the behaviour, asked if they had been OK last night because of their hasty retreat and although the husband tried to be diplomatic the wife stated quite clearly that it was because she would not have been as tolerant as we were of the outrageous behaviour of these children.  These people had been with us for 4 nights and were here last August for 2 nights.  They have already recommended friends, who are coming in September and they have stated their intention to come back again next year.  I asked them, what if last night had been your first experience of our B&B, would you have come back?   A resounding NO came from both of them!!  Now that's a lot of business (and reputation lost) by such unthoughtful behaviour from our fellow countryfolk. Just as dinner started last night I had an enquiry from a French lady for next Saturday night.  We have one room available for one night, for which she was very grateful.  She then asked about dinner.  When I checked I realised we had, horror of horrors, another English family with young children booked in.  So I have made it evident, in advance that she will have to eat with a young family - I felt it only fair to forewarn her,  but I really shouldn't have to do that!!! I'd be interested to know how others deal with this kind of situation?  I really feel that by taking oung families, we are jeopardising any other business we may have here at the same time.
  11. A very interesting thread this and I think I fall somewhere in the middle. I don't particularly want people hanging around all day.  However, there was a thread a while back about what you provide in your B&B for guests and it seemed to me that people were going well over the top, TVs, hi-fi, DVDs, phones, armchairs.....  I don't provide ANY of these, because I don't want to encourage people to hang around all day.  GdF suggest that you should provide armchairs and a table in each bedroom if possible, they also want you to provide areas in the garden for people to sit it.  Both of these only encourage people to hang around all day, so I don't understand why it would be a problem under GdF rulings. When people reserve a room with me (and it is a room, not a night, I don't quite understand why people are stipulating a difference here?) I send a confirmation email and lay out a few ground rules so that they know them BEFORE they arrive and can choose to cancel the booking if they don't want to abide by them.  We serve breakfast between 7.45 and 9.30 (although we occasionally make exceptions if people have arrived particularly late after a long journey).  I won't leave trays out beyond that time as freshly squeezed orange juice separates and looks aweful and tea and coffee kept warm in those vacuum things tastes horrible.  I want people to experience the best breakfast I am able to give them and that means me being in attendance to make sure it is so. I also stipulate that they must have vacated their room by 10.30 on the day of departure to allow me to prepare it for the incoming guests.  I would expect someone to appear for breakfast but if they were staying for more than one night and chose to go back to their room afterwards it wouldn't bother me.  They would have to accept two things though: as others have  stated, they could not expect the room to be serviced and I will not creep about it my own home because they have chosen to stay in bed for half the day; if I want to hoover, have the radio on or whatever, I will continue to do so. Now having said that I don't mind people hanging around in their rooms if they want to, or sitting in the garden and reading or playing table tennis or boules is one thing.  What I DO object to is those that hang around the property and follow me around or want my undivided attention all day.  As Miki has said, we run our CdH single-handed and have to be a jack of all trades - for the last few weeks, with daily turnrounds and evening meals to shop for and prepare, we have been doing 15 to 16 hour days for days on the trot without a break, so it's not an easy life, and without some space and time to yourself, you would quickly become very worn down and then you are of no use to anyone.  Tempers become frayed and you can't offer the genuine, friendly welcome that every guest is entitled to expect.  So Hegs and Lynarth, if you want to come here and laze about, that's fine by me - but please respect my privacy and the fact that I need some time to myself - all work and no play makes Jill a very dull (and grumpy) girl to stay with
  12. We're B&B so it may be slightly different (don't necessarily know why!) and I set myself targets at the beginning of the year, on what I judge from last year, or from tourist figures in general should be busier months, just so that I can get an idea of how well or appallingly we're doing.  ie, will I be able to pay the bills and feed us, or will we be able to indulge in eating out occasionally, that type of thing.  Well for June we were over a 1000 euros down on my target and based on only 2 rooms, that's a lot!!!  July was much as expected, August was poor last year and this year has exceeded all hopes.  I just wish we had a couple (or ten) more rooms - we are turning so many people away every day.  however, September is already well in excess of my hoped target number of rooms let and October AND November are beginning to show promise (B&B tends to get booked no more than 2-4 weeks in advance, so difficult at this stage to tell but it bodes well )
  13. Wow Arnold, that's amazing!!  We're on sites I never even knew existed!  And I've yet to do a proper revamp of my site with decent keywords etc
  14. Is anyone else experiencing a lst minute rush from the UK? I know that the nature of B&B is pretty last minute anyway, but in the previous two years I have found these last minute bookings to be from people touring round, or stopping en route somewhere else.  Any late 3 or 4 night bookings all previously came from French people, usually Parisians, deciding to get out of the city for a few days. Towards the end of July I was looking at either an August of extremely hard work, ie lots of last minute one nighters, or a worrying time of being only about a quarter full.  This last week the booking enquiries have gone absolutely berserk - at least 8 a day, all asking for between 3 and 10 day stays!!!  I am now in a position (from a week ago of being only 25% full) to having tomorrow empty and the 12th empty (which for the sake of sanity I think I will block out anyway.  Other than that both rooms (plus kids add-on room) are full to the end of the month.  I then have a couple of free days at the beginning of September and am then full again for the second half of September. I'm wondering what the reason is.  Purely out of curiosity.  Is it people trying to wait to get last minute cheaper ferry bookings?  I wonder whether the London bombings could even have something to do with it.  On the news the other day they said that in a survey done last week 1 in 3 people who said that previously they would have taken their kids on days out to London have decided not to.  I wonder if instead, as so many of our enquiries have been for about 3 days, whether people have decided to go away for a short break, rather than have several day trips to London. Ay thoughts?
  15. Even allowing for their regulations, the features can be vastly different. That's fine, if one chooses a CdH one is not looking for a hotel chain style cloned room and therefore I wouldn't expect that in EVERY 3 epis place I went to I would find exactly the same facilities.  What I WOULD expect is a certain degree of comfort, cleanliness and bathroom facilities. We know 3 epis places that are actually a chateau, we know another one near the sea that is pretty basic but meets the 3 epis criteria, we know one near a port that is pretty bizarre, to say the least, wonderful ambiance, very clean but is 2 epis, another one near us is 2 epis has no rooms ensuite and is completely different. But this is my point EXACTLY.  I thought the whole point of a grading system was so that people could know what to expect.  I don't know how the minds of the inspectors/organisers work, but from a purely personal point of view, if I were searching for somewhere to stay I would first of all look at the key as to what each level offered as a minimum.  I would expect that a 1 epis, key, crown, star, whatever symbol the organisation cares to use would indicate that somewhere has reached a certain standard but may be pretty basic and may have shared facilities for example.  I would expect a 4-whatever to be of extreme comfort and luxury and a 2 and 3 to be fairly similar, but perhaps a little more comfort in a 3 epis.  SO.... if there is a place by the sea that is also a 3 epis and yet "pretty basic"  I would be extremely disappointed to discover this on arrival.  Yet how would I know that from their advertising?  And what justifies them having a 3 epis if this is the case?  From the guidelines that I was given it seems that the criteria mean you would have to be a lot more than "pretty basic" to warrant 3 epis. Ultimately, I have no problem with GdF and would have quite liked to go with them.  However, as Maggi points out, more and more people are turning to the internet rather than using the GdF book as their bible, so I think the right route for me is to just spend more money on internet advertising and signage.  I couldn't agree more with Miki's comments that if you don't pay out for decent marketing you won't get a decent return.  
  16. Hey!!!   Did you see that?  I just became a Forum GURU!!!  Didn't know I was so wise
  17. Do ou think it would work for dark rum?  I've tried the lot and they're all c***!!!  It's getting embarrassing to keep asking the same people to bring me supplies over from the UK. "You mean you've drunk what we bought you last month already?!?!"
  18. Good point Gay and it would be a way round it.  I'm not even particularly concerned by Miki's point that people travelling together would by-pass us, as we constantly get asked it we can cater for 8,10 or 12 people, when we clearly state that we have two double rooms, one of which can also cater for up to 3 children.  So I don't think it would particularly deter people from making the enquiries. My problem is, that I still have a bit of a problem with GdF anyway.  I don't, as Miki seems to think, have a bee in my bonnet about them.  When I first applied to them, although it was in French, their immediate response to, presumably my English name, was that I would have to be able to speak French before I could be accepted, and that was after waiting for goodness knows how long for an initial response from them in the first place.  I now, of course, realise that a long wait time is normal in France but at the time, having been told by our local tourist office that GdF was eager to recruit, I was a little surprised by. I now find that, although I have been greatly encouraged by our local tourist office, who still claim that GdF are eager to recruit new members, they still have this very laissez faire approach of take it or leave it, no room for negotiation.  So it's just that each time I approach them they have a very bad attitude to their potential customers.  I quite understand that rules is rules, but it's the ATTITUDE that gets me.  They take this great moral high ground and to be quite honest I don't really think they are in a position to do so.   I have been more tha a little disconcerted by the irinspection procedure.  One of my reasons for being eager to join GdF was that French people use it as a benchmark by which they know they will receive a reasonable standard.  However, this lady seemed to be too preoccupied by the size of my rooms.  She didn't check that I had mattress protectors, pillow protectors, that the showers actually WORKED.  She didn't even LOOK inside my kitchen - now that could have been covered in a layer of grease and she would have been none the wiser.  She wasn't interested in how I stored my jams, what I offered for breakfast etc etc.  These are to me the important issues that determine whether somewhere is a) eligble to even be part of the organisation and b) at which level they should be graded.  This is my main reason for now thinking twice about my partnership with them.  As stupid as I think the ruling about the room size seems to be held in such high importance, I could accept it if they were as pedantic about what in terms of cleanliness and hygiene, are much more important criteria.  The perception I had was that if my rooms had been bigger I could have had a 3 epis rating, yet my mattresses may have been dirty and stained, my kitchen could have been filthy, my jams could have had a film of mould over them, none of this was checked and I'm not so sure now that I think that GdF is such a great recommendation of standards if this is the way they judge a property. And of course, as I said in my initial posting, when I suggested that I would like to join GdF because I may be able to increase my out of season bookings I was told that this was not really likely.  IN season I'm doing pretty well on my own thanks. Oh, BTW Miki, you suggested that if I was unhappy with my inspector's valuation I could bypass her and go to the director for the departement but from what other people tell me, that is the problem in Manche.  You are absolutely right, this lady's hands are totally tied by the rules that she has to judge by, as set by the director.  As our ex-Maire pointed out, he is a bit of a tartar and makes life pretty difficult for Manche members of the organisation.  Perhaps I can re-apply when he retires
  19. Not too sure on petrol pricesI think it's about 1.20€ round here.  But diesel has fluctuated in the last ten days from 1.01 to 1.07 back down to 98 and today back up to 1.01€ per litre.  So obviously a very volatile market at the moment.
  20. Well thanks for that Tony!  Without wanting to sound as though I'm bragging, that's usually the reaction we get from both English and French guests who have stayed at GdF in the past and with whom we have discussed our interest in joining.  I wasn't sure if you were the same Tony F that stayed here, you've changed your user name.  Are you in the Dordogne permanently now? And yes, it was last year; since then we have created a whole new terrasse area in the garden with views over the valley, and you were in the smaller of the two rooms, the other room is much bigger!  I also explained to her that we are breaking through into the adjacent barn over the winter months and will therefore be able to give the guests their own sitting area and have a larger dining area - didn't seem to make a blind bit of difference though Another interesting point to consider is that she wanted to know why we wanted to join GdF and I said that I believed it would increase the amount of guests we got - why else would would you want to?  She felt that being a member of GdF would certainly do that.  However, when I said that I hoped it would increase our out of season bookings she wasn't so sure.  What she did say was that she thought we could greatly increase our bookings by reducing our price to 40 euros per night.  Yeah, great idea!   we'll reduce it to 20 euros, then we're bound to be full! So, as we've managed to get pretty booked up for July and August without their help, perhaps it won't benefit us after all.  I've just done a few sums based on our nights bookings last year, which was 170, and we're well on target to exceed that this year.  If we priced our rooms as she suggests, we would be 1770 euros worse off.  At her suggested rate of 40 euros per night that means we would need to get an extra 44 nights bookings just to take the same amount of money as we did on our own, without their marketing help, last year.  We then have to pay 105 euros to join and 180 euros cotisations, well that's all reasonable enough, however that would also mean having to fill another 7 nights to recover those costs.  SO, the end result being, that GdF suggest we lower our prices to get more people through the door.  We pay them to market the property and we take their advice to increase volume.  We then have to fill 51 more nights to make the same as we did on our own last year and obviously work a lot harder for it!  If we want a nice big GdF paneau on the roadside we also have to 350 euros! I shall discuss this later with my husband but I think we may just invest the 350 euros paneau money and 280 euros joining fee and cotisations in extra internet or magazine advertising. 
  21. We got our 5 year cartes de sejours within 3 weeks of arriving in France from the prefecture at Saint Lo, without having to show proof of income.  In fact, the French lady who was helping us at the time, and who had previously worked for the hotel des impots, refused to let me take my bank statements with me, saying that my income was not their business!!  We had no problems at all.  Perhaps it's a Manche thing! Anyway Val, very good luck in Canada - and come back online and tell us what it's like in Nova Scotia.
  22. Well, we've just had the GdF lady round.  And where haven't I cleaned, what I haven't I done to make sure I meet their requirements??? All the mattress protectors have been replaced with waterproof ones, because that's what it suggests in their book for 3 epis; Nice feather pillows replaced with foam ones, because that's what it suggests in their book for 3 epis Furniture shifted round to make sure there is at least one chair per person in each room Fresh flowers in each room, because that's what it suggests in their book for 3 epis In fact, I went through their guide of what warranted a 3 epis chambres d'hotes and felt that we equalled or exceeded absolutely all of their criteria.  The one problem we might have was a shower curtain instead of a glass door in one bathroom and the shower actually being over the bath when they recommended that the two should be separate.  But no, she said that was all OK. She was a very nice lady and I was amazed that having read on here how some people's homes were pulled apart by GdF inspectors, I was ready for the worst.  However, she went into each room, made a couple of minor suggestions, lifted up the duvets to check what the beds were like, then proclaimed that the place was absolutely beautiful and she would be delighted to take us into the association as soon as we had a couple of bars put on a couple of low windows, which is something we knew we had to do anyway.  So, I said, what grading would you give me? TWO epis she said!!!!  So I asked what I needed to do to make it a 3 epis CdH.  Nothing she said.  Can't be done she said.  Your bedrooms are beautiful but they are too small.  Now one bedroom is 13ft x 14ft, which works out at 17.23 sq metres.  The other is 15ft x 15ft (21.25 sq m), they both have bathrooms in excess of 4 sq m (3 epis requirement).  According to their book a 2 epis room needs to be a min. of 15sq m and a 3 epis a min. of 18sq m.  She also commented on how lovely and big the twin bedded room attached to the larger room is, for children's use, (also being about 18sq m) So just HOW big did she expect the rooms to be in order to warrant the extra epis? It seems to me that absolutely none of the decor, comfort or facilities were taken into account; she was extremely impressed to see tea and coffee making facilities and hair dryers in the rooms; she commented on the pretty furniture and the fact that one room had a settee and the other (will be getting) two armchairs, and yet when it boiled down to grading it, all of that seems to have been ignored and only the SIZE of the rooms taken into account.  Not really much incentive for making a place comfortable is it?  Don't think I'll bother to get the armchairs now. In fact, I don't know that I will bother to go into GdF now.  I've stayed in a couple of 2 epis places in the past and they were pretty dire.  I feel that to be classified as a 2 epis could put a lot of people off, rather than encourage them to come, especially when people round here only charge 25-30 euros a night for a 2 epis double!! Interestingly enough, we bumped into our ex-Maire yesterday and he asked how business was going.  We told him that we had the GdF inspection today and he wished us MUCH good luck.  He said that the director in Manche is a bit of an awkward buggar and a bit of a tyrant and that's why not many people bothered with them round here.  He felt that the association in itself is a good thing and that other departements are much better run - perhaps he's right!!  It's interesting that, although they are desparate to encourage more CdH in this particular area, within a 20km radius of us there are quite a few CdH but only about 6 in GdF.  I think I know why now. Anyone else experienced anything like this?  And do you think it would be worth my pointing out that one of my rooms is only .75 of a sq metre too small for the 3 epis rating and that the other is 3 sq metres bigger than it needs to be and ask therefore, why we can't be upgraded because of the room sizes.  According to the Guide a la creation de CdH you have to get so many points in various areas (garden, terrases, salon, salle a manger, bedrooms, bathrooms etc); so is it worth arguing my case and saying that I don't want to go in unless I'm a 3 epis?  After all, she does seem very keen to get people signed up to GdF, especially those willing to do TdH. Surprisingly, and perhaps a little worryingly, she didn't even look at the kitchen to see what kind of a state that is in for preparing breakfasts and TdH, which she strongly encouraged me to do.
  23. A straightforward answer:  I bought 1200 litres about three weeks ago at 62 cents a litre.  I don't have a crystal ball but would only expect it to go up between now and October.
  24. Yes, just occasionally we get a waft of a nasty smell from our fosse but it's once in a blue moon! Some people just HAVE to moan, it's what makes their holiday!  There may be a more sinister motive behind it, ie they want a refund or as someone has said, they want an excuse for not cleaning it themselves.  Others just like to pick holes in everything. When we used to rent our house out we had a great missive sent to us by email when the couple returned home, telling us how half the grouting was missing from the bathroom tiles, which would create a leak through the bathroom floor, that every piece of crockery was chipped, there were no matching glasses and that the place hadn't been cleaned properly on arrival.  I checked with the lady who did our turnrounds (trusting her implicitly, as I know she always did a good job) and she told me that she thought everything seemed OK and that, yes, she had done a thorough clean before their arrival. We were going to the house ourselves a couple of weeks later.  On arrival I checked the crockery and out of a full dinner and breakfast set of 4 settings there was one side plate with a chip on it that hadn't been there before.  There were a couple of new, odd, glasses, where people had obviously replaced ones that they had broken, but as there had been 6 of each type there were still enough for a matching set, as the house only slept 4.  And as for the grouting, it was an area of less than one inch that had broken away!!! Don't worry about them.  YOu have their money and if you are satisfied that you left the house clean and tidy then if they go elsewhere all the better I would say!  As I've said somewhere else, when you're dealing with the general public it is absolutely impossible to please all of the people, all of the time.
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