If you live in an area like I do (Las Vegas) that attracts a lot of tourists each year, a short-term rental property can be a great investment strategy for extra monthly cash flow. You can also host guests by renting out room in your own home. Check out the ROI statistics for properties you can buy in your city by signing up for a free 14-day trial with Mashvisor. Expert guidance and advice are just a phone call away.
Unlike a traditional rental home where tenants decorate to suit their own tastes, a short-term rental must be fully furnished with a welcoming ambience that speaks to the type of clientele you want to attract. Best of all, a vacation rental can bring in up to twice the amount of monthly rent when compared to a similar traditional rental home in year round markets. Just be sure to do your due diligence and determine the cash flow before committing to buy a vacation rental.
Put Yourself in the Visitor’s Shoes
What type of tourists are drawn to your hometown? People who search for vacation rental homes on sites like Airbnb and VRBO are typically wanting to experience the local culture of the area they are visiting. This is especially true for international visitors, who often pick homes with live-in hosts. Think of your own expectations if you were traveling across the country or somewhere overseas such as Europe or Asia.
Shine in the Best Possible Light
Keep in mind that you’re going to be competing with hundreds if not thousands of other rental listings. Although vacationers might be trying to save money by avoiding hotel accommodations, they still want to feel pampered. Think spa-themed bathrooms, trendy wall colors and impressive accent lighting.
Dress up furniture with colorful accent pillows, floors with stylish rugs and windows with attractive drapes, wooden blinds, plantation style shutters or patterned curtains. Buy some coffee table books with high-end photography that showcases nearby natural attractions and points of interest that guests may want experience during their stay.
Provide a Fully Stocked, Updated Kitchen
Give your renters all the comforts of home with a few extra amenities that will keep them coming back. Bring the coffee shop to the house with a latte and cappuccino maker. Try a user-friendly model such as the Ninja Coffee Bar (reviewed here) or this top recommended Keurig Machine. Keep a laminated instruction sheet nearby or include it in a general guide that details all the property’s features, rules and guidelines.
Brushed stainless steel appliances give the kitchen an updated look and help hide fingerprints. Glass bowls or vases filled with fresh citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons and limes add a pop of color to counter tops and make useful garnishes for drinks or to enhance the flavor of food and recipes.
Create Inviting Outdoor Living Spaces
Make your rental the ultimate transitional living space by investing in sturdy outdoor furniture covered with comfortable and colorful cushions and pillows. If you’re in a luxury rental market, an outdoor kitchen can bring you top-tier pricing. Otherwise, a decent gas grill will keep your patrons happy and well fed while they enjoy other outdoor amenities that might include a swimming pool, a hot tub or a fire pit. String lights or outdoor lanterns inspire a fun and festive atmosphere.
Finishing Touches Create a Lasting Impression
Thanks to networks like HGTV and web sites like Houzz and Pintrest, people have become accustomed to well-decorated spaces. Rooms need to appear up to date, clean, uncluttered and spacious. Emphasize focal points with oversized wall art, accent walls and directional ceiling lights. Leafy ferns, indoor palms and broadleaf tropical plants make rooms feel warm and inviting; they also help recycle indoor air and pair beautifully with wood furniture.
Support your local art community by showcasing the work of local artists on wall art, light fixtures, textiles or sculptural accents. Stock a small bookcase with published works by local authors, local photographers or the biographies of local entertainers. Let your short-term vacation rental reflect the very best of what your destination has to offer.