Security deposits can be required either by Airbnb or by Hosts. Airbnb security deposit requests are based on a home’s features and/or the timing of a reservation, and are never requested based on anyone’s race, national origin, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, or age.
Airbnb-required security deposits
Two days before your stay begins, an authorization hold for the security deposit amount will be placed on your payment method. You won’t be charged, but the hold means that you won’t be able to access these funds until the hold is released. For example, if you’re paying with a credit card with a total credit limit of $5,000, and there's a security deposit of $500, your credit card limit would then be $4,500 until the hold is released.
As long as no property damage occurs during your stay, we’ll initiate a release of the $500 hold placed on your card 14 days after your checkout, or before the next guest checks in. Your bank may take 3-12 business days to process the release of funds. If it turns out we can’t authorize the hold for the security deposit amount, you’ll be notified by email and will have 12 hours to try another payment method. If that doesn’t work out, we’ll cancel your reservation and you’ll be refunded.
Try to make sure your payment method has enough money available to cover the security deposit. (If you’re not able to do that, Airbnb is not responsible for any associated fees, including overdraft fees.)
Host-required security deposits
Some Hosts require a security deposit for their listing. The amount, between $100 and $5,000, is set by the Host, not by Airbnb. If you’re a guest and you’re booking a listing with a Host-required security deposit, you’ll be shown this amount before you make your reservation.
Host-required security deposits are different from Airbnb-required security deposits in that no authorization hold will be placed. Guests will only be charged if a host requests to collect on their security deposit. Depending on what was damaged, the amount the host requests may or may not be the same as the security deposit.
If and when a Host makes a request to collect on their security deposit, it will be handled according to the Host Damage Protection Terms. Host damage protection is a part of AirCover, top-to-bottom protection for Airbnb Hosts.
How security deposits work if there’s an issue
If there’s an issue during your stay, for either Airbnb-required or Host-required deposits, the process of collecting on the security deposit will work the same. A Host can report an incident and submit a request for some or all of the security deposit within 14 days of checkout.
Note: All payments, including security deposits, should always be made through Airbnb. Don’t ever exchange money outside of the Airbnb website. Find out more about what to do if you’re asked to make a payment off the Airbnb website.