10 Tips for Staging Your Vacation Rental Property

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Vacation Rental Property

As people look for alternatives to standard hotels, they’ll come across a lot of competitors. As a vacation rental property owner, one of your most important jobs is to consistently attract new visitors. Cultivating an inviting aesthetic will help you pique the interest of even the most discerning travelers. These 10 staging tips can help you take your rental property to the next level.

1. Know Your Target Audience

You already know that your target audience is a short-term tenant. However, it’s best to go deeper than that. Your target audience might be a short-term tenant who’s looking for the convenience of laundry machine access and a wine bar. Your target audience might be couples with young children. It’s a good idea to use versatile building materials that can be easily rebranded as the market changes. For example, vinyl plank flooring is practical because of how easy it is to clean and maintain, and its simple, elegant appearance allows it to fit seamlessly into any decor.

2. Repair or Replace

While a photographer can edit certain blemishes out in their post-production process, there’s no way to edit a real-life experience with a tenant. Replacing dinged-up cabinets is an inexpensive way to substantially upgrade your unit’s kitchen. When you opt to upgrade to white shaker cabinetry or RTA cabinets, you’re investing in the functionality and beauty of your property.

3. Incorporate Natural Lighting

Natural lighting makes a room look more spacious and inviting. Before the photographer takes photos of your listing, be sure to open the blinds and the curtains to invite as much light as possible. Hang mirrors on the opposite side of the windows in order to magnify the natural light that the room is already receiving.

4. Clean and Declutter

Because it’s your rental property, it’s easy to have a few blind spots. Perhaps you haven’t cleaned the floorboards in a while. If this is true, it’s time to begin scrubbing. Additionally, it’s time to get extra hands who can work on what you need help with. Hiring a cleaning service can do wonders for the look of your rental when it’s listed online.

No one likes clutter when they’re visiting a short-term rental. Be sanitary and considerate by eliminating piles of paper, junk mail or personal items. Even when you’re staging a room like a child’s bedroom, don’t overcrowd it with tons of stuffed animals, books and art supplies. A simple eye-catching pillow can serve as a great pop of color. Make it a habit of discarding items that don’t belong. If you’ve noticed that a certain item isn’t a hit with guests, it’s okay to donate or recycle it. Don’t hold onto anything that’s not serving your purpose at the moment.

5. Invest in Your Curb Appeal

Before a person can fall in love with the interior, you have to get them in the door. After all, first impressions matter, and the curb appeal is a tenant’s first introduction to your home. Always maintain a trimmed, green lawn. If you’d like to add pops of color, plant seasonally appropriate flowers. A beautiful wreath is a great addition to make the front door look charming. Additionally, make sure the home’s exterior is clean. If it’s time to bring out the power washer, don’t forget about the driveway or gutters along the street.

6. Include Attractive Amenities

When you know your audience, it’s much easier to install amenities and luxuries that they’ll enjoy. For a young family with small children, a playroom is an excellent addition. Turn the playroom into a child’s wonderland with kid-sized furniture, play mats and a bookshelf of children’s classics.

if your property has a pool, capitalize on that and cater to people looking to relax. You could install an outdoor Tiki bar, Adirondack chairs and tables with umbrellas. A barbecue or outdoor kitchen will increase your property value and be a boon to those who love to grill. No matter who your target audience is, amenities can set your property apart from similar units.

7. Bring the Eye Upward

While you don’t want to overcrowd your property with too many items, you still need to make an impact with the items that you have. Bring the eye upward to take advantage of the height your property has. Take measurements to know where to properly hang artwork and mirrors. Make sure that the pieces you choose don’t look like they’re aimlessly floating in the middle of a wall because they’re too small. Choose pieces that add impact because they’re the appropriate sizes for the walls. As you look for furniture, look for larger, higher pieces. You can also install items like bed risers to make a bed look more majestic and elevated.

8. Simplicity Is Important

If you’re looking to make a visual impact, always remember that less is more. Keep the look simple by deciding on the foundation colors, textures and prints. From the paint colors on the wall to the print of the area rug, every detail needs to be part of the cohesive whole. If there’s an element that doesn’t fit, replace it quickly. Simplicity is enticing to vacationers who are looking to relax and get away.

9. Create Focal Points

It’s easy for furniture, colors and patterns to compete against each other in the staging process. A great way to avoid this is by deciding what the focal point will be for each room. In the bedroom, the bed is typically considered the focal point. Knowing this, keep everything else in a supporting role. Accentuate the bed by making sure that it’s made like a bed in a five-star hotel. Make sure the pillows, blankets and other bedding details look as plush as possible, and ensure that it’s actually comfortable to lie in.

10. Collect the Best Photoshoot Accessories

When it’s time to take photos for the listing, set up the ambiance with photoshoot accessories. To photograph the main bedroom, consider adding a few props like a breakfast tray and a plate of breakfast food. This one detail can make the room look more inviting. A fresh floral arrangement leaves a nice touch to enhance the look of a dining room table.

Moving Forward with These Tips

As you work toward refining your staging efforts, take a look at other vacation rental properties. Take notes on what catches your eye and why. As you gather a better understanding of what works in captivating the eye, you can work on applying those same tactics to your staging efforts as well. Before long, you’ll be able to finetune the process and attract the best vacationers on a consistent basis.

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