It’s makeover time! Hustle & Blush recently did a makeover for a gorgeous cabin in Big Bear, and we’re excited to share our tips and tricks with you. The short version is this: a mini-makeover can have a big impact on your property (and your Return On Investment. Our updates to this particular property increased the rental income by over three times!) The home featured in this post happened to be a vacation rental, but the following tends to be true for our permanent homes, as well.
Less is more. Start by clearing out everything that doesn’t belong in your space. Whether you have one home, two properties, or run multiple Airbnb’s, we notice that people have a tendency to create clutter. Even if your living space is minimalistic, there’s always that one part of the home that is bursting at the seams with old stuff we can’t seem to part with or figure out how to incorporate into our design. This is especially true for people with second homes. A second home you’re renting out can quickly become a place to store all that old furniture you aren’t using in your main home. Whether you’re over-cluttering the shelves in your apartment or letting your old furniture lead the design in your rental, we see this as a missed opportunity.
And we totally get that sometimes reusing old furniture is a financial decision. We’re a team that prides itself on being able to design on a budget. You can always sell old furniture on eBay or your favorite local online marketplace, or you can have a nonprofit pick it up for a tax write-off. Use the money to invest in some well-priced pieces (these can be second-hand, too, or sourced from an affordable store like Target). And believe us, you’ll make the money back quickly through an increase in bookings, because renters will respond more to a well-designed space. And that doesn’t mean you should try to make it “feel like home” by stuffing the shelves with random objects! You may be tempted to fill every nook and cranny with items, but what may seem to look “homey” becomes “cluttered” very quickly. The first question our designer asks a client is, “How do you want your guests to feel in your home?” and then go from there. But first, we always do a big sweep and clear out the clutter. If you need help with letting go of your old things, the KonMari method is very effective. Because who doesn’t love a blank canvas?
Evaluate the competition. If you have a rental property (say on Airbnb), then you are directly competing for guests with your neighbor. (Not to be un-neighborly!) Scope out listings with similar layouts in your neighborhood. What style/offerings do those properties have? How can you uplevel from there? For example, if you don’t see entertainment for kids in your competition’s properties, consider buying an XBox or a foosball table for the living room. These small purchases can make a place that much more appealing for prospective guests. (And if you’re just looking to mini-makeover your own home, it can be very helpful to start by creating a mood board of images you pull from Pinterest or magazines to get you visualizing the kind of home you want to end up with.)
Clean up and dress up your outdoor spaces for entertaining. We all tend to let the outdoor areas get a little, well, blah in the off season. But there are ways to add warmth and appeal to your outdoor space, no matter what time of year it is. For example, make sure your outdoor plants are in pottery or baskets. This is hugely transformative, and people often overlook what a great ceramic pot can do for your design. Think of the outdoors as an extension of your home. Do you like to decorate your dining room table? Well. you can also style an outdoor table with a cool centerpiece, like a table runner, to brighten the outdoor dining area. If you are making over your rental property, we recommend supplying throw blankets in baskets for guests to grab when an evening gets chilly. A basket of blankets adds a warm, homey touch, while also being practical. And what’s cozier than a fire? A portable fire pit can add mega ambiance at a nominal cost. And don’t forget our animal friends! Elegant bird or hummingbird feeders carefully placed in trees encourage wildlife to engage around you. This makes for a touching outdoor experience that makes your home feel special to guests. And the same is true for your own home!
Once you’ve followed these five simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to having an upgraded home or the vacation property of your dreams. But if you need some extra assistance, please reach out to our design team HERE for a free consult call. Likewise, you can pick up your own runners, wall art and throws on the H&B site. Just remember, a mini makeover can make a BIG difference.
Need a hand designing the space of your dreams? We do interior design! Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to chat about creating a home you love.