My House is Your House : Short-term Rentals

Short-term rental properties are a growing trend. It offers an easy way to supplement your income and for a relatively inexpensive startup cost. Then with apps like Airbnb and Home Away, getting people to see your rental is right at your fingertips.  

Why is this trend spreading? 

Let’s be real. It simply cost more to have the essentials than it used to. Working to cover the bare minimums leaves less at the end of the month for the non-essential, more rewarding and fun, things like that gorgeous bag you’ve been eyeing, dream vacations, entertainment and concerts. Or hell, even a dinner out at your favorite restaurant. 

Photo by Michael Longmire on Unsplash

People are looking for inexpensive ways to supplement their income with things they already have. Renting out a room or a basement in your home a couple nights a month could mean cover your mortgage (or a portion of it) or allow you to pay down debt sooner. This, freeing you up financially for other goals and dreams. 

On the flip side, people are traveling more. It could be for work, as offices downsize, or for pleasure. Either way, having the option to book a short-term rental can be a cost-effective alternative compared to booking a hotel. A short-term rental can also have emotional benefits. Living in a home environment can be less nerve racking on your system than a hotel environment. More relaxing, comforts of home. 

My Home is Your Home 

You don’t have to have a full basement apartment to join the rental community. Short-term rentals come in all different kinds, shapes, sizes and offerings.  The appealing part of renting one of these properties is for the variety and uniqueness they offer. 

Types of Rentals

An entire floor of a home
Basement/in-law suite
Luxury mansion
Whole house
Tree House

Guess house
Hunting Cabin
Bedroom within a home 
Piece of land………..

The options are endless. If you have the space, there will be someone somewhere willing to try it. But no matter what you are offering, the design is what will [sell] it. 

Designing your AirBNB

One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to listing a short-term rental is the presentation. They throw a mattress in a room, on the floor, some sheets and say: “There you go, $150/night please.” 

There is a lot of competition out there. Not only are there lots of other people doing the same as you but you also have Hotels and Motels to compete with. You need to make people WANT to book your place over the others, even if yours is more, and it comes down to the presentation and offerings. 

Pick a Theme

Take some time and really think about your design theme (farmhouse, seaside, modern city…). Pick something that speaks to your area, the roots of your town. When people are traveling, they want to experience the local culture.  

Farmhouse design style room

If your home is in the south, play up the farmhouse design. If they home is on the cost, work a seaside theme into the rental.  

Simple, Light Wall Colors 

No matter your theme, keeping the wall light will make the place feel bigger and brighter – more welcoming. Stick to whites, off-white and grey tones for you walls, ceiling and floor finishes. These are a great, neutral, base color that will accompany any color pallet or theme. Plus, if you change your theme or color pallet down the road, you won’t have to re-paint! 

Accessorize with Color

So, you have your bright, neutral, space but you’re not done! You will still need some color. Without, your place could be too sterile looking – unwelcoming. The opposite of what we are trying to accomplish.  

Pick a color theme that matches the design theme you are aiming for in the space. By picking a color theme and sticking to you, you will naturally create consistency through your space. Consistency has a calming effect on people subconsciously which is what you want in a home-away-from-home. 

With your color theme in mind, add these colors throughout your space through the accessories, bed linen, curtain, wallpaper accents, etc. This technique will keep you focus on your theme and restrict you from going too crazy with it. Then if you ever want to refresh your look, it’s an easy and inexpensive change. 

The Cherry on Top

Think about who your potential renter will be. Will they be a business profession in on a business trip? Or maybe a family of four on vacation. Or a couple (young or old) looking for a little escape from the every day. 

Finding a place that is clean and comfortable is one thing. But accommodating your guests needs will make your place THE place to stay in town. 

Think about incorporating things like: 

  • Free WIFI 
  • Free Parking 
  • Pet friendly  
  • Shampoos, conditioners and body wash 
  • Access to washer/dryer 
  • Coffee machine, including coffee essentials  
  • A seating area on the porch/balcony where someone can enjoy a night cap or morning coffee 
Actual Airbnb rental in Nashville, TN

The thing to remember is that whomever is looking at possibly renting your space is going to be away from their home. Their comforts. Their routines. They will choose your place only if it speaks to them on this level. No one wants to stay in a dingy, dirty, mattresses on the floor room in someone else house. That screams horror movie! And so very much not welcoming and relaxing. 

For more short-term rental design ideas, check out earlier blog: Airbnb Designing  

Have you stayed in a great rental recently? Share your experiences below.  

If you need some ideas or guidance for your own space, send us an email at  [email protected]  

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