How an Airbnb Guest Is Staying in an Apartment for Months 'Rent Free'

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Spitz said that cases like this one happen more frequently than expected, citing a recent incident where a nanny refused to leave her employer’s home in California last month. That said, he said there are steps landlords can take to protect themselves.

“It’s incumbent on the landlord to do a credit check on their tenants,” Spitz said.

To some extent, even if the host does a background credit check, there is little that a host can do to fight back against a guest when they decide to stay past the departure date they agreed to in the written contract.

"If it is for a fixed term, it doesn't really matter because under California law, if a fixed term tenant holds over, meaning they stay past the end date, they become [a] month to month [tenant]," Pepperdine University law professor Shelley Saxer told ABC.

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