Just over a decade ago, simply offering an extra room in a major city for less than the cost of a hotel was all you needed to do to attract interested Airbnb customers. The vacation rental market has since exploded. Today, hundreds of rental properties are available for both short- and long-term rental in just about every corner of the world.
For those seeking long-term lodging, this means more choices and incredible value in many cases. For those renting Airbnb properties, it means higher expectations and more competition. Here are some ways that you can use style and décor to maximise your investment at your Airbnb property.
Play To Your Strengths
Not every Airbnb property can serve every traveller’s needs. As a property owner, you’ll want to think about your ideal customer. Is your property perfect for a retired couple looking for an extended vacation? Are you equipped to serve families with children that may need to stay a month or two? Or are you ideally located for travelling business professionals looking for a temporary residence and working space?
Once you know who would love to stay at your property, style the place and beef up your offerings to serve that audience. For example, if you decide you have the perfect spot for families who need to relocate to your area for a few months, be sure you have child-friendly and durable furniture as well as a well-stocked kitchen for meal preparation. Offer comfortable lighting for family space and quality window coverings in the bedrooms. Invest in some extras like play pens, electronic entertainment or high chairs.
On the other hand, if you want to grab the attention of business travellers, be sure you have reliable, fast WiFi connections, ergonomically correct furniture, and common office equipment such as a printer, scanner or fax machine. You’ll want lighting that is ideal for working extra hours as well.
Select Unique But Tasteful Decor
Airbnb décor can always be a bit challenging because everyone has a different opinion of what is beautiful, comfortable or attractive. Pick a theme that either corresponds to the tastes of a large portion of your target audience or select something that’s unique to your local geographic area, culture or region.
Try to select furniture, artwork and other décor that complements your overall look. It may be worth the investment to talk with a professional interior decorator, a property management company, or at least a friend who had a natural flair for style and décor.
Choose Quality, Durable Furniture
Remember that as a property owner, you’ll be hosting different people over a long period of time. Although long-term Airbnb customers are probably not as hard on your furniture as a rotating number of weekend travellers, you’ll still want to invest in high quality, durable furniture to withstand high usage and still look attractive and relatively new over time.
Invest in the most important pieces including quality, comfortable beds, sofas and reclining chairs. A sturdy dining room set with easy-to-clean chairs would be a worthy investment as well.
Opt for Common Kitchen Appliances
For those guests seeking long-term Airbnb rentals, you’ll want to have a well-stocked kitchen. Be sure you invest in quality appliances that are easy-to-use and clean. You don’t have to have many obscure kitchen gadgets but make sure you have plenty of commonly used items such as a coffee maker, microwave and an assortment of dishes, pots and pans, cutting boards, and utensils.
Skip The Blinds
The windows of an Airbnb property offer a great area to spruce up. Heavy curtains can add a great deal of warmth to a room, both in terms of appearance and temperature control.
You may want to consider investing in room-darkening window coverings or blackout curtains in the bedrooms to help ensure a great night’s sleep for your guests anytime they want to sleep.
An extra layer of sheer curtains can be a nice touch when customers would like natural light and privacy at the same time.
Incorporate Fabulous Lighting Options Throughout
Light has a wonderful way of changing the entire mood of a property, individual room or even marketing photography on your listing. Select your room lighting carefully.
Lights that hang from the ceiling can add a customized look for any room, often becoming a centerpiece. Simple warm table lamps can add much to the ambiance of any space. Consider well-lit desk spaces if you offer a work area as well. A reading lamp near beds is a welcome addition for those who enjoy a good book before bed.
Be sure to utilize those lights when you’re taking your photos for your Airbnb listing. A professional photographer can help you position lights to make your property the most attractive online.
Don’t Forget The Details
Although having the right large pieces of furniture, lighting, flooring and window dressings are all important, don’t forget the small touches that will make your place unique and cozy.
Fresh flowers and plants, although they require some care, are well worth the investment. Place them near natural light sources and scatter vases with fresh flowers throughout the home for great photo opportunities. Even if your guests do not want to keep them long-term, they certainly make a great welcoming gesture at the very least.
Incorporate tasteful décor in candles, knick-knacks, paintings and artwork to make a house feel more like a classy home.
Enhance Room Through Color Choices
Minimize the number of your stark white walls. Instead, use colors to enhance the feeling of particular spaces at the property. For example, warm paint colors can make a room particularly inviting or a dark color scheme can add coziness to a small nook area for private conversations, quiet reading or a cat nap. Consider painting the ceiling to change the ambiance of the room even more.
Select Flooring Options Fit For Each Space
Thick, lush carpet may be a great option for bedrooms, which don’t see as much traffic in a long-term rental as many areas. It can add warmth as well as sound insulation, both welcomed properties in a bedroom.
Hardwood floors or faux hardwood floors are classic, attractive and relatively easy to clean and maintain in main living areas. You can add a touch of style in a particular room with an area rug that complements the design of the room.
Durable, easy-to-clean tile may be the best choice for kitchen and dining areas as well as bathrooms. Many inexpensive yet durable tiles are available if you can’t afford ceramic options.
Get Professional Assistance
Many Airbnb property management companies, Airbnb itself, and independent designers and consultants can offer a helping hand when it comes to styling your Airbnb for maximum profit. Look into the services they offer and consider the return on your investment. It may be worth hiring a professional who can help make the large and small decisions to help you property be as appealing and as attractive as possible for potential customers.
By following these suggestions, you can style your Airbnb property to compete successfully against others in your market.