I just booked my first AirBNB lodging yesterday. The hardest part of it was signing up with AirBNB and getting "verified" that I was who I said I was.
I used my credit card to book. If something gets messed up, I assume that I will get money refunded to my credit card consistent with the "strict" policy of my rental. You need to read the cancellation policy very carefully to see the rules about exactly what you can expect to get back if you cancel. If you have any questions, email or call AirBNB.
Buried on the How to Travel page is this: https://www.airbnb.com/help/policies/cancellationsandrefunds. Eventually you can get to a place to send an email or maybe call them. I think the number is 1-855-424-7262 since it is the last one on my phone and I did complete the transaction yesterday.
About the verification:
I had already been emailing back and forth with the owner of the apartment I wanted. I put in all the information I needed to rent it. Then I couldn't get verified. I was in a Catch-22 situation. I had to be verified within 12 hours to get the apartment, but the email I sent about issues I was having with that said to expect an answer within 48 hours.
There was a number to call (the one above I think) but supposedly only if it was an "emergency." My frustration reached emergency status pretty quickly, so I called. Although I was told the wait would be 5 minutes, someone was on the phone to help me within 1 minute.
They wanted 3 ways to verify my identity online. My issue was that I am retired and not on Linked-In, so I couldn't be verified that way. And I have no way to do a video for them -- yes they wanted a video uploaded. My Facebook page did not have enough activity (I've been on less than a year) to verify me by itself. They did add my Facebook picture to my profile. Note: they want a picture of your face, not your dog or some other non-you picture you might have for your picture, so if you use something else, you will have to upload a separate photo of you.
It turned out that the real live person could verify me by looking at a blog I have done on my travels since 2009. That was not an option offered for online verification. She did that while talking to me, I got verified and I'm now considered a real person by AirBNB. Supposedly I won't have to go through this again if I choose to rent through them.
During the process, I was wondering if it was worth the hassle, but I can understand the need for verification of both the owner and the renter these days, so for now I will say that it is.