Holiday rentals: top tips to get your living room guest-ready

Holiday rentals: top tips to get your living room guest-ready

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When it comes to preparing your property for guests, every room matters. Here’s our guidance on how to improve your living space and deliver the best possible guest experience

The living room is arguably the space where your guests will be spending most of their time. So, how can you prepare the area in a way that instantly invites them to put their bags down – and their feet up? Read on for all of our tips.

Balance style with comfort

Interestingly, our 2023 Travel Trends research found that in the coming year, 32% of travellers plan to stay in accommodation that is “Instagrammable”. So, if you’re looking for decor inspiration, Instagram’s top posts are a great place to start.

Of course, a stylish living area will draw travellers in, but comfort is still king. Relaxation is likely high on guests’ holiday agenda, and the living room is one space in your rental that can provide home comforts. For example, are there blankets and footrests within easy reach of the sofas? 

Other considerations include placing a few characterful coasters in choice positions, ready for that morning coffee. Soft lighting like lamps, candles and dimmer switches for the evenings can help set a relaxing atmosphere. And investing in a feature wall that sets the tone can act as the perfect backdrop for their Stories and Reels. Don’t be afraid to rave about your rental’s striking view, or the stunning open fireplace either. 

A deep clean and a declutter should be high on your to-do list, too. Curate the knick-knacks leaving behind just enough charm to sell your property, and just enough space for your guests to be able to unpack effortlessly. 

And, this one may sound obvious, but make sure the living space has enough room for everyone. If you’re advertising that your property ‘Sleeps 5’, make sure it can also ‘Seat 5’. If necessary, think outside the box, it doesn’t need to be two big and bulky sofas. Add in a couple of armchairs, beanbags or floor cushions so the room has everything guests need but is still spacious.

Show your living area a little love

With guests coming in and out of your property, some soft furnishings can quickly look tired. So, give your cushion covers and sofa throws a regular refresh. Ideally, you’d have at least two sets, allowing you to swap them out for a wash when needed.

Another hack, which will not only help you keep the property feeling fresh but also supports your community, is exhibiting local artists’ work on the walls. It’s a win-win, you give their art additional exposure, likely leading to sales, while your property gets a regular mini makeover.

A few entertainment options can also go a long way. Think about how you can tailor your selection to your guests and have something for everyone. Mix modern gadgets like games consoles with old classic board games and you’re covered for those rainy days. Throw in some books and recent magazines for good measure. 

Help your guests get their culture fix with coffee table books that are relevant to – or inspired by – your location. Local photographers’, historians’ and tour guides’ books will give your living room some extra warmth. 

Think about ways to wow

When you go above and beyond, it doesn’t go unnoticed. Surprise and delight your guests with thoughtful extras. They don’t need to cost you a premium, but you’re sure to reap the benefits in the form of glowing reviews and repeat bookings.

Handwritten tips and instructions on how to operate equipment adds the personal touch and shows you’re thinking about how to make their experience as seamless as possible. Meanwhile little gestures like a snack-filled drawer or a phone charger poised on the coffee table are sure to go down well. 

We also recommend you do internet speed checks during peak times to ensure your WiFi is able to handle demand. If it isn’t very fast, be transparent about this on the listing – or upgrade. And while we’re on the topic, don’t forget to put your WiFi password somewhere prominent for guests to find on arrival. 

Our research showed that device connectivity is important to 39% of global travellers, and one in two US travellers. So, if you are willing to invest a little more in your holiday rental’s living room, give them access to a TV subscription service for the duration or provide a Bluetooth speaker. 

Of course, with all this in mind, it’s also really important to listen to what your guests are saying. Keep a close eye on reviews and invite feedback. If the same comments come up multiple times, you know what you need to work on next.

Want pointers on preparing other rooms?

Continue your holiday rental transformation with tips and tricks for getting your bathroom guest-ready.

Read more

What do you think of this page?

  • Our research shows that 32% of travellers plan to stay in accommodation that is “Instagrammable” in the coming year, so don’t underestimate the value of styling your living room
  • A lot of travellers choose holiday rentals so they can have a ‘home away from home’ experience. Lean into this by considering what home comforts you can provide to make your living area instantly inviting – like throws, coffee table books and candles
  • 39% of global travellers consider device connectivity when choosing their accommodation. Bluetooth speakers, access to a TV subscription service and USB plug sockets in the living area are sure to enhance their stay