Home-sharing has become a phenomenon in the real estate and housing markets, with design playing a key factor in the success of a property, home, or room. The radical departure from the beige wallpaper and white linen hotel room has opened up a world of possibility for the adventurous traveler, from spending a night on the Great Wall of China to staying in an architectural masterpiece.
To help you design a successful Airbnb, we have provided 25 design tips for homeowners looking to turn their properties into profit. Remember, it's all about first impressions, and having that “curb appeal” will ultimately bring in people seeking one-of-a-kind experiences.
1. As previously stated, first impressions mean everything. Front doors should have a unique design or be freshly painted. Facades should be clean and pleasant to the eye. Conceal (or remove, if possible) any utility or drainage units (pipes and other fittings) near the front door.
2. A narrow corridor upon entering the space creates a claustrophobic reaction, try opening up the ground level to make it more welcoming.
3. Like any other architecture project, respecting the site is key to good design. What are people visiting and eager to see in the city/town? What’s so unique about the location? Reflect on the city’s culture and capture its essence through the space’s architecture and furniture. Use local, authentic material produced in the city for furniture and decorative elements. Highlight the buildings’ unique architectural details through decor, paint, or wallpaper.
4. While designing the interior of a home-share, several factors must be taken into consideration: the space should be welcoming and laid out efficiently to make the best use of available space, catering to several functions, services, and people.
5. Take into consideration the scale you are working with. If the house is rather small, maximize the area by using smaller, more space-efficient units.
6. Open up kitchens and dining rooms for unconstrained circulation.
7. Create more wall space by moving doors towards the end of the walls instead of situating them in the middle of the room.
8. Vertical details can distract you from a room’s small area. Install vertical elements (free-standing mirrors, tall light fixtures) to create the illusion of a bigger space.
9. Install headboards with storage space and shelving to optimize wall usage.
10. Separating a space with glass doors will practically divide the area into two functional rooms while maintaining the optical illusion of one large space.
11. If the property will be hosting more than one family, focus on the common areas (foyer, kitchen, dining rooms). Unify the bedrooms’ design to ensure that everyone is benefiting from the shared space.
12. Use smaller sized kitchen appliances (mini fridge, mini stove) for space optimization. People are on vacation so they will not be spending all their time cooking and cleaning in the kitchen.
13. Similar to hotels, the bedroom is the most important room of the property. Make sure every room is spacious enough to fit a bed, sufficient storage space, and allow for proper circulation around the room (bonus points if each room has its private bathroom).
14. If you happen to have a luxury rental, go big or go home. Make sure you let your customers feel luxurious throughout the space’s design: a wider entrance, bigger kitchen, and lavish furniture pieces.
15. Opt for lighter interior colors to give the space a more illuminated mood.
16. Even if the decor is vintage/rustic, the appliances should be modern and easy to use.
17. Use durable material (cotton, leather, and microfibers for furniture, and quartz for countertops) as every item in the household will be used frequently, on a daily basis.
18. As the house is now serving the public as well, it’s no longer about personal taste, it’s about providing a well-designed, functional space that caters to others. Remove personal items from public areas in the property, and store them in your private room instead.
19. Having an outdoor space is an added value that should not be disregarded.
20. Pay attention to the design of seasonal areas in the house: balconies during summer/spring and the chimney area during the winter.
21. If the house is facing the sea, make sure you use water-resistant, durable material to avoid extra costs for frequent repairs.
22. Landscaping is very important if the property is situated on a site that caters to the outdoors. Provide an outdoor entertainment area by adding decks, fire pits, pools, or pergolas to enhance the surrounding landscape.
23. If you have a pool, make sure to conceal all the exposed drainage pipes.
24. Invest in a photographer or high-quality photos for your Airbnb listing. Photos should be high-resolution, taken during the day, in landscape format. Remove clutter, set the scene, and capture the personality of your property.
25. Social media exposure can make or break your business. Create ideal social media posts using unique furniture pieces, engaging wall murals, picturesque architectural elements, stunning outdoor spaces.