For people and businesses whose main avenue for gaining customers is the internet, appearance means everything. The first impressions would-be guests have of your vacation rental are often your best chance to get them to choose your property.
To leave your mark in the crowded world of short-term rentals, you must impress in the nanoseconds it takes customers to make decisions.
Before you can catch a breath to explain the attractions of your rental, online viewers would have scrolled past your ad to be gone forever.
Rentals that make money attract a steady stream of guests. That is because their design captivates visitors both online and offline. The home is styled to be photo-ready, and when guests visit them, the rental meets and exceeds their expectations.
As Keyrenter Property Management in Norfolk explains, good vacation rental design must have two distinct qualities: outstanding aesthetics and undeniable functionality. The home cannot look nice in photos and disappoint in real life, nor can it be a wonderful place to stay, but underwhelming when viewed online.
It must be visually striking and entirely valuable. Unless you find a way to combine these essential criteria in your vacation home, you will struggle to get bookings. If people book the house because you have great images, their poor reviews will scare future guests.
How should you design a short-term rental to get more bookings?
Interior design tips to help you get more bookings
1. Add personal touches without making them personal
Do not copy other people’s designs, even if they are national chains. Avoid using generic items from large retail stores. Give guests a chance to enter your world by adding mementos that spark curiosity. However, remove personal articles that remind guests that this is another person’s home.
2. Tell your region’s story through design
If your home is in a rustic sleepy village, do not mimic the look of an urban home. It defeats guests’ purpose for choosing that location. There are things travelers want to know about the people and history of your region. Decorate the home with local art and souvenirs.
3. Combine colors intelligently
There are three things to think about when choosing colors. Use colors that are related to the type of rental; beach or countryside home? Think of colors most people like; almost half of your guests will prefer some form of blue. Think of how the colors will look on digital media.
4. Get rid of clutter
Clutter makes your home look chaotic. When viewed online, the jumble of stuff in the house will distract attention from the rental’s features. Clutter creates anxiety and will interfere with guests’ ability to relax. A cluttered space will look uninviting and smaller than it is.
5. Keep the design minimal
Go for a clean design. Avoid large furniture pieces and items that eat up space and interfere with traffic. They look bad in pictures. Avoid having lots of knick-knacks or stuff that collect dust. A minimalist approach will make the most impact online and on people staying in the home.
6. Create a practical and comfortable layout
Room layouts should do the following: encourage people to gather, facilitate conversations, and allow traffic to enter and exit effortlessly. Furniture backed up against walls creates the appearance of waiting rooms. If you tuck them in a corner, the rooms feel empty. Aim for coziness with central focal points.
7. Maximize natural and artificial lighting
Ensure the home is well-lit during the day and at night. Guests should be able to control the amounts of sunlight they are comfortable with inside the house. Whether they are reading, preparing meals, soaking in the bath, sleeping, or watching TV, guests should have sufficient lighting for each activity.
8. Don’t leave the walls blank
Don’t leave walls blank but don’t crowd them with oversized art pieces. Aim for a balance between the size, shape, and color of the artwork, the amount of visible wall space, and the distance between the artwork and the seating area. Do not use cheap replicas of famous art; buy unique items.
9. Add fascinating bits and pieces
An ordinary object you repurposed or driftwood you incorporated into the design is more valuable than generic art that guests are likely to find in ten other rentals. Old discarded objects that you have found new uses for or a child’s painting may be more interesting than expensive art.
10. Buy durable and comfy furnishings
No one likes lumpy pillows, especially after they have traveled hundreds or thousands of miles to reach their vacation destination. Investing in furniture that breaks easily or linen that won’t last is not a smart money move. Buy long-lasting furniture and warm blankets. If you can afford it, throw in some antiques.
11. Incorporate nature into the home
Use a lot of natural and eco-friendly materials; some guests look for homes that do this. In addition to attracting such customers, having plants and eco-friendly features will make your home more welcoming while cutting down your energy costs.