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

Vacation 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 guide to improve your living space and deliver the best guest experiences possible

The living room is where guests will be spending most of their time. 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 our tips.

Balance style with comfort

Interestingly, our 2023 Travel Trends research found that in the coming year, 32% of travelers plan to stay in accommodations that are “Instagrammable.” 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 travelers in, but comfort is still king. Relaxation is likely high on guests’ vacation 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? 

You could also include a few coasters in convenient places, 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 serve as the perfect backdrop for their posts and stories. Don’t be afraid to rave about your rental’s striking views or cozy fireplace either. 

A deep clean should be high on your to-do list, too. Curate the knickknacks, leaving just enough charm to sell your property and plenty of space for your guests to unpack easily. 

While this one may sound obvious, make sure the living room has enough space for everyone. If you’re advertising that your property sleeps five, make sure it can also seat five. If necessary, think outside the box – it doesn’t need to be two big, bulky sofas. Add 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 softer furnishings can wear out quickly. 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 whenever necessary.

Another hack that both keeps the property feeling fresh and also supports your community is exhibiting local artists’ work on the walls. It’s a win-win. You give their art exposure, potentially leading to sales, while your property gets a mini makeover.

A few entertainment options can also go a long way. Think about how you can tailor your selection to guests and have something for everyone. Mix modern gadgets like games consoles with classic board games, so guests are covered for 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 be expensive, but you’re sure to benefit from glowing reviews and repeat bookings.

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

We also recommend doing internet speed checks during peak times to ensure your Wifi can 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 easy for guests to find upon arrival. 

Our research showed that device connectivity is important to 39% of global travelers and half of all US travelers. If you’re willing to invest a little more in your vacation rental’s living room, sign up for a streaming service or provide a Bluetooth speaker. 

Of course, with all this in mind, it’s also important to listen to what your guests are saying. Keep a close eye on reviews and ask for 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 vacation 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 travelers plan to stay in accommodations that are “Instagrammable” in the coming year, so don’t underestimate the value of styling your living room.
  • A lot of travelers choose vacation rentals to 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 throw blankets, candles, and coffee table books.
  • 39% of global travelers consider device connectivity when choosing accommodations. Bluetooth speakers, access to a streaming service, and USB plug-ins in the living area are sure to enhance their stays.