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Interior design

Hello there!

I have been using airbnb a fair bit around the world myself and looking at some properties online and where I have stayed sometimes when you look around all you need to make it better is some smart decor and a nice light or piece of furniture.
That inspired me to ask you all, if you think interior design upgrade help to get more bookings and would you invest into an interior designer to advise and help you out with styling?
Would you trust online advise with links to products etc if its just a touch up?

Invest in a Designer – no; certainly not on-line. Invest in a renovation of my listing – yes.

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We get interior design advice here for free.


And all over the internet for free. And truly, I think that most hosts would agree that it’s a very rare guest who chooses to stay with you because of your interior design skills.

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But, mine (skills) are special.
It’s called designer since birth, taking time to find the right thing, and everything is Customized:)
And (some of) my guests can tell the difference.


I get a lot of kudos for my interior design so I do value it (it’s far beyond decor). But designing the spaces is the fun part for me, I wouldn’t let someone else do it, much less pay for it.


It’s probably just me, but I sort of resent the implication that as ‘mere hosts’ we have no design skills at all, agreed? I’m not saying that the OP implies this, just saying that we do get commercial posts from time to time from so-called interior designers trying to flog their services.

Most of us here spend time and money on our decor and many of us have rentals that deserve special treatment, such as @gypsy’s place or, in our case, a MCM theme throughout because of the building.


It is just a genuine question to see if there is a need for service in general and how would you go around interior design in your properties. Definetely, not everyone need it, and I do appreciate your response that most of you would not require an interior designer as you enjoy it doing yourself and are confident in doing so.
All feedback is really welcome!

Yes! I would think the hosting community actually has a particularly high amount of design skills. Putting together a space that both functions and is comfortable and that people choose to be in is ultimately interior design.

Sometimes people really mean “decorating” and when they suggest someone might want help with it, they really mean “your taste is different than I would do it”.


I think I’m a fantastic decorator. If you disagree, you just aren’t into my style and I don’t care. It’s my house, it’s being decorated for me. And the people who built the house, who we bought from, did a fantastic job designing the place. So no, this wouldn’t be a service I’d be interested in.

Edited to add: if you’ve seen my listing, I’m not responsible for the red and yellow walls. My desire to paint over those walls got trumped by things that actually needed to be done to make the house awesome for guests. It’s going to be painted over ASAP. I hate the color of those walls. :smiley:

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I think there are more than enough designers and design services available. Most hosts here are quite savvy and know how to find design services that meet their needs. Good luck finding new clients elsewhere.

To be honest, one can get a free designer at any Ethan Allan store when you go in to purchase furniture. So many furniture stores have designers working there that will guide and provide advice to customers for free.

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My mom and I are what we call “decoratingly challenged” and I would welcome help. However, I am frugal (cheapskate/tightwad?) so I would not pay for it.


It’s fun for me and I would help you for free and am good at frugal resources too.


Well, I would greatly appreciate that when the time comes. And I’ll certainly remember because your initials are the same as my brother’s and I smile a little bigger whenever I see you post already.:shushing_face:


Although I’ve moved homes a lot and am reasonably confident in my design skills, another eye, especially a trained one is always useful. For this reason, if I was thinking of using a designer I would want to use someone local who knew what suppliers, craftspeople etc were available and who could look at my place “for real” rather than in photos. There is also quite a lot of advice available online - look at 1 Chic Retreat by Mercedes Brennan for example, who works especially with short term rentals (I like her style but find her prices outrageous!)


Ditto this. I think I have a pretty good eye and love decorating so probably wouldn’t ask/pay for help. If I did, free online advice here at the forum, etc. is fine, but if I were to pay I’d want someone to see it in person.

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I definitely think good design can help get good reviews which can of course help get more bookings, depending on the target market. The loads of bachelorette parties I get seem to love our design, as it’s frequently mentioned in reviews. We might even be able to charge slightly more because of the attention and thought we’ve put into it. But I LOVE design and have found a lot of free helpful tools online (floorplanner.com, Olioboard which sadly closed shop, Pinterest, etc.)

I’m sure many of us would love the help of a professional designer but many STRs have slim margins as is. If we were making the same margins as hotels there would probably be more of a market for STR design services, but I think you’ll be hard pressed to find clients (especially in this ‘self help’ forum).

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