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New Airbnb Host Furnishing Questions

Hi everyone. I’m new to the forum and my hosting situation will be a bit short. I’m about to close on a house but can’t move in until August, so I’m looking to Airbnb it from about mid-April through July to help cover expenses while I pay double rents. I had a few questions on what you think is necessary for furnishings, for reference it is a 3 bed/2 bath.

  • Are full mattresses sufficient or should I do queen?
  • Are normal bedroom items like a dresser a requirement?
  • Any other essentials you can think of that would be absolutely necessary to have a successful listing

I plan on fully stocking the kitchen and bathrooms. I have a few items but trying to stay as low cost as possible.

Thank you!!

People who are looking to short term rent an entire house on Airbnb expect the home to be furnished. If you are trying to get by with as little as possible be sure to go with a minimalist design esthetic. :wink:

Yes. Only do full if the the room isn’t big enough for queen.

Unless you are just going to have one or two night stays, yes.

Internet and probably TVs. Dining and lounging furniture.

Yeah I’m planning to furnish it with the essentials, mainly trying to figure out things I can get away without having that I would normally have for myself. Like a side table for example.

Imagine that you’re going to be staying in it for a few days and then think of the things that you would find to be essential. This is especially the case if you’re a fly-to location.

For example, I sometimes get inquiries asking if we have a hairdryer (yes of course we do) because people coming to the area by plane don’t want to lug hairstyling equipment with them.

Why do people go to your area? For example, our apartments have beach towels, beach chairs and coolers. Someone hosting in London won’t need those things.

Think about the little things like a make-up mirror, first aid kit, takeout menus … seemingly insignificant things that you might need when you’re staying away from home. They can make all the difference to a guest’s stay.

If you mean a bedside table then I’d say they are essential if there’s room.

There are no real essential requirements apart from those listed on the Airbnb website so it’s entirely up to you. Although the better service you provide the more money you’ll make. :slight_smile:

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Not really if you plan to have 2 people in the bed.

Depends. I didn’t have dressers in 3 of my 4 bedrooms, but I had nightstands on each side of the bed and the closets had lots of built-in shelves for storing clothing and items as well as hangars and rods for hanging clothing. Plus hotel-style luggage stands.

Adequate seating at dining table, living room, outdoor patio, etc. for the maximum number of guests you allow. Adequate lighting in every room. USB chargers and accessible electrical outlets in every bedroom. High speed internet with a minimum bandwidth of (5Mbps x maximum guests) and excellent WiFi coverage throughout the home. Smart TV. Doorbell camera.

To save money, I would recommend looking for quality used furniture (except for mattresses). Time is not on your side, though.

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I plan on getting several of the typically more expensive items used for sure. Either Facebook marketplace or a thrift store. Not going to get anything gross or in horrible condition of course, but will save money where I can. Thanks for your reply.

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Craigslist. Garage and estate sales. My B&B microwave is nicer than than mine, and it was $20 at a moving sale, and my Keurig cost $15.

My advice would be to start moving stuff that you don’t use all the time at your current house to the new one as soon as you close.

Beds should be queen size at least. You need 4 pillows for every bed, and 3 sets of linens for the entire place — 1 in place, one being washed, and one for emergencies/backup which should be locked away from guests. I won’t get into colors or not, but I have always had all white sheets and pillowcases from Amazon and white towels from Costco.

Colored linens can get bleached by some makeup & acne treatments that contain peroxides, and I find it easier to get stains out of white than deal with ruined colored items. There have been long argument threads in this forum on this topic, so I’ve said more than enough.

My Craftsman rooms are furnished with relatively spartan Ikea Tarva bed frames and night stands, because I wanted to faux paint them to match the stain in my fir woodwork. Mattresses were ordered via Amazon, and are fine after 2 seasons. I’ve been trying out all the beds during closure.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01IU6RQW0

You may get remote workers, so high speed internet and a decent desk space with good lighting and a comfortable chair is a necessity.

If you have a remote rental you MUST have outside cameras that you can view remotely, and Air requires that you disclose their existence in your listing. If you search the forum you will see why you need them.

You also need to have a basic maintenance toolkit there — big & little crescent wrenches, screwdrivers, hammer, pliers, pipe wrenches, electric outlet tester, as well as vacuum(s), mops, brooms, etc.

My next amenity purchase will be to replace the current garage sale lamps on the Ikea nightstands with new ones that have USB and electrical sockets in the base. Less hassling with extension cords, which can trap the robovac that’s only there during turnovers. No dust bunnies under the beds!

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Are you able to move some of your furniture into the Airbnb? If so, move most of your furniture there. You can do without but not guests. Let them have your dining table with chairs, your dresser, comfy sofa and coffee table. Guests will expect it to be fully furnished. It doesn’t make sense to invest in furniture for an Airbnb if it’s only going to be short term.

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There are some things I can bring over, but I was planning on getting cheaper items and then just reselling when I am ready to move in. I’ve done the math and I should be able to break even and cover all my costs even with low bookings

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One other thing I just thought of: I’d like to list it as soon as I can so I don’t miss booking opportunities, but I can’t get in there to take my own photos obviously until they’re moved out. Would it be a bad idea to post it with the listing photos and then include a disclaimer that the furniture will be slightly different?

If the photos on your listing don’t match what guests encounter when they arrive, you are setting yourself up for bad accuracy ratings and refund demands, regardless of a disclaimer in the written part.

Lots of Airbnb guests don’t read- they look at the photos and price, gloss over the written info and book.

And if I were a guest, I wouldn’t book a place that didn’t clearly show what it really looked like.

An Airbnb shouldn’t have “staged” real estate type photos. They need to be realistic. If there’s a bouquet of fresh flowers on the table in the photo, you have to make sure there are fresh flowers when the guest arrives.

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What @muddy said! Your photos need to be what they will see when they walk in.

As we say here, underpromise and then surprise them with how great it is. Do not overpromise, and avoid anyone whose first question is about discounts.

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I’ve changed a few items over time, but usually for the better so no one complains. I would note it but think about whether the change makes the space less functional. That’s when guests will care.
The only thing I’ve ever had a guest mention is that they needs more space for putting down and opening suitcases without putting them on the bed. (You don’t want them there because they are dirty). For a short term you probably won’t invest in luggage racks unless you plan to use them yourself or for family guests. We put an sturdy coffee table in one and an old trunk in another for that purpose.

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Air mattresses ? Make sure you disclose that or be willing to suffer the reviews

I wish you luck, keep us updated on how this works out.

RR

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Yeah air mattresses are potentially an option, perhaps for the 3rd bedroom or something. It’s a college town with a lot of traveling students/professors who are here for a short period so I may be able to get away with that.

Umm, as @RiverRock says, you’d best be up front. If I was confronted by a fecking glorified airbed then a) my first call would be to you requesting a proper mattress, and b) if it didn’t materialise (see what I did there :wink:) in around an hour, my second call would be to Airbnb requesting a refund and for them to find me alternative accommodation.

STR isn’t easy money, it sounds like you’re trying to do it on the cheap.

JF

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Why not use the furniture you will use in the new home in your airbnb? Things like tables and chairs, lamps and such would not ‘suffer’ when used in the airbnb…

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You might also consider a furniture rental company.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with air beds as long as it’s disclosed and clear. When someone books make sure they understand about the airbed. Lots of people don’t read the listing carefully but feel perfectly justified in complaining about something that is disclosed after they get there.

One of the first Airbnb’s I ever stayed in had an airbed installed on a regular bed frame with headboard and up off the floor. It was fine for one night.

Right, I’m not saying I would be inaccurate with the accommodations, more like it would just be a different style couch or bed frame. But I’m just going to wait anyway, would rather not deal with it.

That’s a good idea, I haven’t looked into furniture rental before.

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