Design an Airbnb for Repeat Customers: 10 Elements to Keep in Mind

Airbnb has made passive revenue easy for a lot of people around the globe. If you have a great host who can act as a property manager for you or, better yet, if you live nearby a rental property then you can easily create a revenue stream out of nightly bookings. The trick to Airbnb is to make sure that you are getting consistent bookings and that is determined by a combination of a great host and a great unit. These design tips will help you make sure that when the host leaves your guests to their own devices that they feel both at home and still feel like they are on vacation at the same time!


Vitamin D is an important part of our daily joy in life, so we really do need the sun in order feel happier! That is part of the reason why having large windows in a unit to allow more sun to filter in can drastically improve the way a person perceives the inside of a home. If you have windows on the ceiling or large windows facing the sun then it is important to capitalize on that light rather than obstruct it in your design. Be careful to make sure that you have air conditioning or additional fans so that the sun doesn’t bake the unit and make your guests feel stuffy.


The thing about Airbnb is that the units are supposed to feel like you have your own apartment but when people go on vacation, they want to feel pampered. Although the freedom to come and go and cook for yourself is great, anything that makes people feel cozier and warmly welcomed will put your space over the top. Make sure to have very soft linens in your unit or add little journals, candles or something else that is sentimental that the guests can use and take home with them, it will make a difference!


Although there is the reality that things can disappear from your unit over time, adding detailed features is still important if you want consistent bookings on your unit. Interior design is about creating an atmosphere and the details are what solidify that atmosphere. If you buy towels, color coordinate them with your unit’s design scheme. If your unit is on a beach then decorate with shells and other nautical items to remind your guests that they may have their own space but they are still on vacation!


Make sure that the interior design of the space does not take over the functionality of the space. It is important to make the unit look as classy and elegant as a hotel would, but you have to remember that the purpose of Airbnb for most people is so that they can function in the unit the same way that they would at home. They need to be able to cook and clean up after themselves and you need to provide them with the tools and space to accomplish that.


One of the challenges of designing space for an Airbnb is that you don’t have the ability to maintain plants in the home. If you have an amazing host or live close by then it is worth the extra effort to keep flowers or plants around the house, but if you live far away and don’t trust that your host will have the time to maintain it then you need to get creative. You can find high-quality fake plants that will give the same look but you can also use organic materials like woven baskets, wood furniture or fake bamboo shoots to create an atmosphere of nature without the upkeep.


Often times people will use Airbnb units for a long work trip or for a large group or family. That can make the need for organizational materials more important than one might realize. Having a closet and drawers are great, but including some additional storage options for under beds or in bathrooms can help your guests feel less cluttered when they start pulling things out of their suitcases.


One of the most important elements of any interior design project is having strong lines. Whether vertical or horizontal, the cohesion of your design plan will not be fully realized if you do not first begin with simple, clean lines that are easily identifiable. If you start from there then the rest will follow a lot more easily!


The way that you use your space in any unit is really important for how a guest perceives the home. For example, if there is an open floor plan and enough space then make sure that they have an eat-in area for the kitchen. This gives them the option of deciding how they want to use their space. If there is an outdoor patio then make sure that there is the option to relax and entertain there so that your guests don’t feel constricted to the walls of your unit.


Color can bring all of the design elements of any space together or it can be so far off of the mark that it feels abrasive to the eye. Stick with the theme here, don’t use a bright red if the unit is nautical themed or don’t use earth tones if you are going for a bright and sunny vibe. Use accent walls where appropriate to give the design complexity and be judicious in how you work with color in your Airbnb!

two panel painting of palm plant
Photo by julie aagaard on Pexels.com


Using the furniture and other objects in the home to create shapes is important to give more flare to the design of your Airbnb. If the structure of your house or apartment has more curves than straight lines than keep that in mind. You may not be able to pull off a modern look if the actual construction of the house is going to be more classic. Also, remember to think about how the eye follows shapes and colors because that will help guide you in deciding what shapes to focus on and how to draw attention to key points of the room.

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