Will my home office situation be a deal breaker?

Hello to all. I am not a host as yet but I am considering it. I am looking for some advice before I get too far into this.

I live in a semi-rural part of Connecticut. I have a spare room about 14 x 14’ that offers a full private bathroom right next door. Ground floor access. Zoned heat they can control. Can offer kitchen access plus access to the den/tv area. There is even a regulation size pool table they are free to use. Plenty of on-site parking.

Now, the hitch. Where the bedroom is located is at the end of a short hallway on the same side of the building as my home office (separate room just before with a door) and a “photographic-type” workshop area that you need to pass through when you come through the french doors that lead to the bedroom.

I have had some friends say this is a deal breaker. That they’d never stay because “who wants to see this when they wake up”. I disagree. They are not sleeping in the workshop. The place is clean and neat and actually, is quite interesting in what goes on there. I have customers come in and they are amazed at what they find.

Comments and questions, please.

Unless your home office smells of photographic chemicals, which I assume it doesn’t in this day and age of digital photography, it’s not a deal breaker at all. It sounds like your place would be a nice place to stay.

I would caution you about letting guests use the pool table. Guests are notorious for not taking care of hosts things and pool tables can be expensive to repair if the felt gets torn.

I have been a guest in many Airbnb’s and this would not bother me. I think that such things are exciting.

OK. Good point. Then would I just keep the cover on and tell them “the table is off limits”?

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Both my husband and I run businesses out of our home. Mine is quiet since I sit at a computer. Guests have to go by my office door to get to their rooms. They actually like that they can say ‘hi’ on their way to the top floor. My husband’s business consumes three rooms of the house and on the first floor his clients often play their violins and cellos and he works to maximize the quality of the sound. He is careful to not use the bandsaw while guests are in the house, but other than that, he hasn’t changed his work habits a bit. It is amazing how many people have chosen to stay with us BECAUSE we were professional musicians until recently. So far, no complaints. Well, there was that one complaint that a client didn’t finish playing the whole movement of a Bach Unaccompanied Sonata.


That’s what I would do. I hope you enjoy hosting and are very successful.

To be fair, with Bach sometimes there is no resolution until the last note, so stopping the middle would really leave you hanging. The organ works are worse - sometimes there is a pedal 5 that just sits for ages and you can’t breathe until it resolves. But then it’s like the sun comes out and the birds start chirping.

Is your husband a luthier?

Some people Airbnb because they like the idea of staying in a unique place and meeting cool people. Those guests will love your place. Other people Airbnb to save money and maybe won’t care about the other stuff; they will be satisfied with whatever you have as long as it’s clean. There’s always going to be someone who is not well suited to Airbnb because what they really want is a hotel.

To attract the ones that will be thrilled, make sure your listing shows all these things in detail, and include captions on the pictures. The guests looking for a hotel experience will probably stay away for the same reason. It’s surprises that people don’t like.

OK. So some say they too have a biz on the home and that you still continue to work at it when you have guests in the house. That was also my concern. That I’d need to hold off working when they are around. If you feel that is a non-issue, as long as I make them aware of the situation, then fine. I will not give up my work. Can’t really, anyway.

The room they would have is very quiet if you close the door. They would not hear much of anything if they chose to do that. They also have the option of going out and into the den or kitchen area where there would be a place to eat, relax, sit and bang on their laptop or watch TV.

Guess time will tell. See how they react and modify as needed.

Just as long as you disclose exactly what the situation is and even show photos. “Private bed and bath is down a hallway and through a workspace.” Something like that. Be clear.
I get disagreed with a lot about this, but I would rethink your kitchen access. It’s a lot of trouble, mess and in most cases does not pay off in getting higher bookings. If you install a TV in their room you will get less of them in your personal den and lounge.


The original poster says that he/she is in a semi-rural area. As this probably means that there aren’t many restaurants close by, I believe it would be difficult on the guests to not permit kitchen access.

I started another thread about “to cook or not to cook” and felt after reading the replies it was not worth the trouble. I would provide them a college fridge, microwave, coffee maker.

As to places to eat, there is some. Three full service restaurants two of which have take out … Pizza, etc., very nice coffee shop with breakfast and lunch, renovated pub type place opening this week, Micky D’s, dunkin donuts. All this within 2 miles of my place.

Also, a Stop & Shop to buy just about anything… Grinders, chicken roasters, deli, etc.

It is more rural than the town I moved from which had everything and was next to a big city. More of a suburb. This is more farm-like but less so now than it use to be. No Walmart and not likely to ever get one. Not a destination spot unless you have family here or are on your way to someplace else. More of a stop over.

I feel good in that there is a real B&B opening just up my street next year. Expect it will be big $$. Very fancy. Other than that there is not much else. No motels unless you drive 15 miles.

Well, it wouldn’t be New England without a Dunkin Donuts nearby. :wink:

With anything AirBNB, it’s just about being honest and hospitable. You’re offering a good, clean alternative to “traditional” accommodation. What you’ve described sound great, and the concept wouldn’t put me off.

My initial reaction is don’t ask friends for advice. They usually don’t know what they’re talking about, if they have no experience.

What is be worried about is someone stealing photographic equipment.

I provided my guests with a mini-fridge/freezer, microwave, and hot water kettle, and only ever had one party ask to use the kitchen (I told them no). Admittedly I am in the city so a lot of guests ate out and stored their leftovers in the fridge, but I did have plenty assemble their own picnics rather than eat out.

I’ve an art studio craft room with my work table, sofa and two chairs and displays of my hand made handbags plus baskets of fabrics yarns paints. This room is open for guest to use as a sitting room … great light for reading. It’s located down the hall from guest room … and often I’m in and out of this room; however, when guests are visiting… I gather a basket of items I’m presently working on to living room or in my private suite … no problems so far