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The Ultimate Guide to Furnishing Your Airbnb Property


woman furnishing Airbnb Property
Photo by @tristanmurff

So, it's 11 am, and you've just been handed the keys to your new Airbnb vacation apartment or home. Aside from the lightbulbs in their sockets and a shower-head on the shower, the place is pretty much empty and far from 'Airbnb ready'! Don't fret! This is supposed to be the fun part! The key to success lies in crafting an inviting and well-furnished Airbnb space that not only meets but exceeds the expectations of your guests. In this comprehensive guide, we will take you through a step-by-step process on how to plan, budget, & furnish your Airbnb property with style and functionality, incorporating expert interior design tips.


For more Airbnb guides & interesting reads be sure to also check out our articles on:


Table of Contents


1. Identify Your Property’s Niche & Price Positioning


Conducting market research of local Airbnbs in your area is an essential and crucial first step in determining your Airbnb’s style & aesthetic. Understanding the positioning of your Airbnb in context of the other Airbnbs around you will help inform your decision on whether you should design your Airbnb to be more or less similar to those around.


Airbnb Market Research Strategies

The process of conducting Airbnb Market Research is simple and can be done manually by surveying your local market on Airbnb.com or by using a third-party Airbnb tool like AirDNA to analyze the market for you.


When conducting your Airbnb market research, you should compare your property against others in these following categories:

  • Size (square ft/m, rooms, or by max. number of guests)

  • Location

  • Amenities

  • Average Daily Rate (ADR)

  • Occupancy Rates/Booking Rates

  • General Styling

AirDNA Property Analysis Tool
AirDNA Property Analysis Tool

One benefit of using a tool like AirDNA is that it provides a quick estimate of a listing's Average Daily Rates as well as the Occupancy rates (how much of the year a particular Airbnb listing is occupied).


Crafting a Customer Persona for Your Airbnb Guests

While compiling information on local Airbnbs in your area try to think of what type of person(s) these Airbnbs are catering to: Are a lot of the listings spacious and amenitized, catering to families on vacation? Are there a lot of low budget options catering to vacation or business travelers on a budget? Are a lot of the Airbnbs a certain similar aesthetic, catering to a specific taste?


Thinking of who these Airbnbs are optimized for should give you an idea of who your ideal guest(s) might be and whether your Airbnb should stand out by differentiating or by creating a similar but better quality option.


Airbnb Price Positioning: High ADR vs. Budget-Friendly

After you've begun to survey the market and think about who your customer persona might be you should have a clearer understanding of what type of pricing best suits your Airbnb & what type of experience will justify that price. If there are many luxury stays in your area with high 'Average Daily Rates' (ADRs), you can justify charging a similar rate by checking that the occupancy rates of these listings are high. On the other hand, if the local occupancy rate is low, you may consider offering a more budget-friendly option to undercut competition. It is important to also consider the market and local tourism to determine if there is any demand for a more premium Airbnb experience.


2. Define Your Property’s Aesthetic


By this point you should have a rough idea of what your average daily rate will roughly be.

Once you have familiarized yourself with the local Airbnb market and determined your pricing you can begin to work backwards towards curating a property aesthetic. The aesthetic you pick should justify your pricing and align with your ideal guest's (your customer persona's) expectations when visiting your Airbnb.


Airbnb Design Success Matrix: Localize, Personalize, & Satisfy

When designing your first Airbnb it is easy to get caught up in researching design trends and looking for interior inspiration. While inspiration and design research are definitely a helpful part of curating a stunning Airbnb property aesthetic, keep in mind that your guests are searching on Airbnb, not for a hotel. It's for this reason that we've come up with this 'Airbnb Design Success Matrix' as a way to keep your furnishing and design adventures anchored to three main questions:


In order to satisfy 'The Airbnb Design Success Matrix' your Airbnb furnishing & design should answer these three questions:

  • Personalize: What makes you (the host) unique or significant, which can be incorporated into your listing?

  • Satisfy: What do potential guests expect and desire when staying in an Airbnb?

  • Localize: What aspects of the local area can be woven into the narrative of your Airbnb?

  • Justify: What is unique about the Airbnb property?


Personalizing your Airbnb Experience

By thinking about and incorporating elements that showcase your uniqueness as a host, you'll begin to craft a dialogue with your future guests. Integrate personal touches or distinctive features that reflect your individuality. In this stage think about your likes, dislikes, favorite places that you've stayed, your connection to the local area, and how you are as a host in your own home.


Satisfying Guest Desires & Expectations

Through the practice of crafting a guest persona and thinking from his/her/their point of view you should begin to better understand what guests are expecting from their Airbnb travel. This will, in turn, help you to think of aesthetics and ways to optimize your experience in order to match your guest's expectations.


Localizing Your Airbnb Listing

In this step of thinking about your Airbnb, try to put yourself again in your guest's shoes. What are their expectations about the local area? What do they know about it? What are some things they don't know about your local area? What elements can you incorporate into the space to answer these questions and tell a story? *It may also be helpful to think about your original first impression of the area and what is significant to you about it that you can share with your guests.


Making Justified Decisions to Your Space

Spotlight the distinctive features of your Airbnb property – whether it's a captivating view, high ceilings, or a special amenity – accentuating your property's unique features will help you make design decisions that do justice to your Airbnb and build a story around it.


By focusing on these dimensions, you're not merely hosting guests; you're creating a memorable and thriving Airbnb experience.

personalized Airbnb touches and aesthetics


3. Create an Airbnb Furnishing Budget


When determining the ideal budget for furnishing your Airbnb, it is important to be honest about what you can afford and what Airbnb cost amount is proportional to your property.


Calculating Your Airbnb Furnishing Budget

Determining the budget for furnishing your Airbnb depends on three factors: Price Positioning, Property Size, and Amenities. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, we have compiled some cost estimates to help you get started.

Here is a rough breakdown of reasonable Airbnb furnishing budgets for different-sized properties:


  • 1-Bedroom Airbnb: Striking the Right Balance Furnishing a 1-bedroom Airbnb requires a budget of $5,000 to $9,000. This ensures an attractive space without overspending.

  • 2-Bedroom Airbnb: Quality within Reach For a 2-bedroom Airbnb, aim for a budget of $7,000 to $10,000. This provides well-appointed rooms without excessive spending.

  • 3-Bedroom Airbnb: Creating a Memorable Experience Managing a 3-bedroom Airbnb? Allocate a budget of $9,000 to $15,000 for an attractive setup. Prioritize comfort and style to create a memorable experience for guests.

  • Studio Airbnb: Compact Comfort on a Budget For studio Airbnbs, budget like a 1-bedroom unit, with $5,000 to $9,000. Thoughtful furnishings can make your studio feel inviting and comfortable.

For Airbnb hosts looking for customized Airbnb budgets with a room-by-room breakdown, we've also designed this free 'Airbnb Furnishing Budget Calculator':


For more functionality, budgeting tools, and bonus links to Amazon products for Airbnb, check out our 'Airbnb Furnishing Tool' available on our Etsy shop!


Lastly, remember that Airbnb hosting is a long-term endeavor. Even if your listing isn't optimal right now, you can always invest more in the future.


4. Airbnb Furniture Shopping Tips

In addition to research and budgeting, it's believe it's important for Airbnb hosts to share their learning & experiences so that new hosts may learn from them. The following list is a compilation of important lessons and tokens of wisdom we've compiled from Airbnb hosts to help you on your Airbnb furnishing journey:

  • Adding Sofa Beds to Optimize Space: Consider offering a sofa-bed option or choose a couch that can accommodate a third sleeper for one-bedroom apartments.

  • Design with Your 'Hero Image' in Mind: Plan your Airbnb cover photo and decorate the space accordingly to optimize for the first click.

  • Measure, Measure, Measure: Take measurements of your space before shopping for furniture. Having these measurements readily accessible will help you choose furniture that fits your space.

  • Shop Large Pieces to Small Decor Items: Start with the largest essentials (such as beds, sofas, and dining furniture) and then focus on smaller decor items. Starting with larger items will help fill your space before finding places for smaller decor.

  • Removable Upholstery: When purchasing furniture with light upholstered fabrics, opt for items that are washable or have removable and replaceable upholstery.

  • Trade Colorful Bedding for a Runner: While colorful sheets may be tempting, it is recommended to stick with neutral white sheets for your Airbnb. This assures guests that the sheets have been cleaned and makes it easier for you to spot any stains or damages from wash or wear. Instead, we recommend reserving colorful sheets for Airbnb staging but not everyday use. To add a pop of color to your bedding, consider investing in a nice runner to go at the edge of the bed. This assures for ease of maintenance and looks professional.

  • Don't Make 'IKEA' Your Aestehtic: IKEA is a great resource, but try to avoid using obvious and recognizable commonplace IKEA items.

  • Smart TV: When shopping for a TV, look for a reasonably sized smart model with good resolution and 'Smart features'. You don't need to aim for the most expensive model; focus on creating an easy and dependable experience for your guests.

  • Guest Stay Length = Ameneties: The longer guests are expected to stay, the more important amenities become, such as a pool, WiFi, parking, kitchen, jacuzzi, washer/dryer, air conditioning/heating, self check-in/out, laptop-friendly workspace, and pet-friendly policies.


5. Designing for Comfort and Aesthetics


Strategic Color Scheme Selection for Inviting Airbnb Spaces

Choosing the Right Color Scheme is essential in creating a cohesive and inviting atmosphere for your Airbnb. Consider the mood and ambiance you want to convey to your guests and select colors that align with that vision.


Optimal Furniture Arrangement and Spacing for Airbnb Comfort

To further enhance the comfort and aesthetics of your space, you can focus on Furniture Arrangement and Spacing. Consider the flow of the room and the functionality of the furniture placement. Arrange the furniture in a way that maximizes space and allows for easy movement. Create cozy seating areas and designate areas for dining or work. Don't forget to leave enough space for guests to store their belongings.


Strategically Placed Lighting Solutions for Ambiance Enhancement

Choose a combination of ambient, task, and accent lighting to create the desired mood in each area of your Airbnb. Consider using dimmers or smart lights to give guests control over the lighting.


Personalized Touches with Local Culture and Art Integration

Add a personal touch to your Airbnb by incorporating local culture and art. Display artwork, photographs, or handicrafts that showcase the unique characteristics of your city or region. This not only adds visual interest but also gives guests a sense of place.


Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Furnishing Options for a Thoughtful Airbnb Design

Consider using sustainable and eco-friendly materials for your furniture and decor. Opt for items made from recycled or responsibly sourced materials. You can also choose energy-efficient appliances and fixtures to reduce environmental impact. Remember, creating a comfortable and visually appealing environment is key to providing an exceptional experience for your guests.


Easy Maintenance and Cleaning: Smart Choices for Durable Airbnb Furnishings

Choose furniture and decor that are easy to clean and maintain. Opt for materials that are durable and stain-resistant. Consider using washable slipcovers for sofas and chairs.


6. Essential Furniture for Airbnb - Room by Room

Furnishing your Airbnb property with the right essentials is crucial to providing a comfortable and enjoyable stay for your guests. Let's break down the essential furniture for each room.


Living Room/Common Area Must-Haves

  • Sofa or Seating

  • Coffee Table

  • Entertainment Center with TV

  • Side Tables

  • Decorative Lighting

  • Bookshelves or Storage

Bedroom(s) Necessities

  • Bed and Mattress

  • Nightstands

  • Dresser or Wardrobe

  • Bedside Lamps

  • Accent Chair or Seating

  • Full-Length Mirror

Kitchen/Dining Area Essentials

  • Dining Table and Chairs

  • Refrigerator

  • Stove and Oven

  • Microwave

  • Cookware and Utensils

  • Cabinets and Shelves

Bathroom(s) Basics

  • Vanity or Sink

  • Shower or Bathtub

  • Toilet

  • Towel Rack or Hooks

  • Bathroom Storage

  • Mirror

Additional Considerations for a Well-Appointed Airbnb

  • Work/Study Area with Desk and Chair

  • Outdoor Furniture (if applicable)

  • Floor Lamps, Table Lamps, or Wall Sconces

  • Quality Linens and Bedding

  • Accent Rugs or Carpets

  • Full-Length Curtains or Blinds


7. Where to Buy Airbnb Furniture

When it comes to furnishing your Airbnb, choosing the right furniture is a crucial step in creating a comfortable and inviting space for your guests. Here, we'll explore top-notch options for acquiring stylish and functional pieces that align with your Airbnb furnishing needs.

Facebook Marketplace

For those seeking budget-friendly, pre-loved furniture, Facebook Marketplace is an excellent resource. Using Facebook shopping keywords like 'post-modern', 'vintage', or 'design' when searching for products can help you with finding unique options that are more unique and affordable than local furniture retailers.

Connect with local sellers to discover second-hand gems that can add charm to your Airbnb without compromising on style.


Thrift Stores

Similar to Facebook marketplace, exploring thrift stores can unearth hidden treasures that give your Airbnb a unique flair. From vintage furniture to eclectic decor, thrift stores offer sustainable and budget-friendly options for hosts with a keen eye for style.


IKEA

Known for its affordable and modern furniture, IKEA offers a wide range of options suitable for Airbnb spaces. From space-saving solutions to trendy decor items, IKEA is a go-to choice for hosts on a budget. More than just furniture, IKEA is a great place to pick up accessories and kitchenware on a budget.


Amazon

For a vast selection and convenient shopping, Amazon provides an extensive array of furniture options for all tastes and budgets. The online giant is a one-stop-shop where you can find everything from basic essentials to unique statement pieces. For a guide to unique pieces to spice up your Airbnb check out our article to The 20 Best Amazon Products for Airbnb to Elevate Your Guests' Experience.


Wayfair

If you're looking for a cheap budget-friendly furniture and decor, Wayfair is a good option. It specializes in offering a broad range of styles and price points, making it easy to find pieces that match your aesthetic preferences. As a note, for hosts looking for longevity in their furniture, this one may not be for you.


Zara Home

For hosts aiming to infuse a touch of sophistication into their Airbnb, Zara Home offers elegant and contemporary furniture and decor items. With a focus on quality and style, Zara Home is ideal for creating a chic and inviting atmosphere.


H&M Home

Combining affordability with on-trend designs, H&M Home is a treasure trove for budget-conscious hosts. Find stylish furnishings and decor that elevate your Airbnb's aesthetic without breaking the bank.


Etsy (for Decor)

Etsy is a goldmine for unique and handmade decor items. From personalized touches to vintage finds, Etsy allows hosts to add character to their spaces and create a truly distinctive Airbnb experience.


Incorporating furniture from these diverse sources allows you to curate a space that not only meets but exceeds guest expectations. Whether you're aiming for a budget-friendly approach or seeking high-end elegance, these options cater to various preferences, ensuring your Airbnb is furnished to perfection.



8. Ensuring Safety, Practicality, and Optimal Guest Satisfaction in Your Airbnb

In addition to creating a comfortable and visually appealing environment, it is crucial to prioritize safety and practicality in your Airbnb. Here are some important considerations:


Childproofing Your Airbnb for Family-Friendly Stays

If your target audience includes families with children, it is essential to childproof your space. Install safety gates, secure furniture to the walls, cover electrical outlets, and remove any hazardous items or sharp edges.


Implementing Fire Safety Measures for Guest Well-being

Ensure that your Airbnb is equipped with functioning smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. Create a fire escape plan and provide clear instructions for guests in case of an emergency.


Smart Maintenance Strategies for Lasting Airbnb Appeal

Choose furniture and decor that are easy to clean and maintain. Opt for materials that are durable and stain-resistant. Consider using washable slipcovers for sofas and chairs.


Security Features for Guest Peace of Mind

Install security measures such as keyless entry systems or smart locks. Provide guests with clear instructions on how to use these features and ensure their privacy and safety during their stay.

By prioritizing safety and practicality, you can create a welcoming and worry-free experience for your guests.


9. Adding Guest Amenities and Personal Touches


When it comes to delighting your Airbnb guests, attention to detail through thoughtful amenities and personalized touches can elevate their experience. Let's explore some key aspects to consider.


Creating Welcoming Atmospheres with Thoughtful Welcome Packages and Amenities

Create a warm and inviting atmosphere by offering welcome packages tailored to your guests' needs. Consider including local treats, a personalized welcome note, and essential information about the area. Guest-friendly furniture arrangements can enhance the overall ambiance, making your guests feel instantly at home.


Infusing Greenery for Aesthetic and Environmental Appeal

Incorporating plants and greenery into your Airbnb space not only enhances aesthetics but also contributes to a welcoming environment. Embrace the trend of trendy Airbnb accommodations by selecting low-maintenance plants that add a touch of nature to your property. Consider placing them strategically in common areas to create a refreshing atmosphere.


Personalized Decor and Local Recommendations for Unique Airbnb Experiences

Make your Airbnb stand out by infusing your personality into the decor. Consider incorporating Airbnb design ideas that reflect your unique style. Display local artwork, photographs, or handmade crafts that showcase the charm of the area. Additionally, provide personalized recommendations for local attractions, dining spots, and hidden gems. This personal touch can go a long way in enhancing the overall guest experience.


Luxurious Toiletries and Essentials for an Upscale Airbnb Stay

Investing in high-quality toiletries and essentials is a small expense that can make a big impact. Stock your Airbnb with premium toiletries, plush towels, and comfortable bedding to create a luxurious feel. Short-term rental furnishings should prioritize comfort and quality, ensuring that your guests feel pampered during their stay.


By focusing on these guest amenities and personal touches, you not only create a memorable experience but also increase the likelihood of positive reviews and repeat bookings. Remember, the goal is to make your Airbnb property not just a place to stay but a destination in itself.


Conclusion

Transforming your Airbnb property into a welcoming and stylish retreat is a rewarding journey that involves careful planning, thoughtful design choices, and a keen understanding of your local market. From identifying your property's niche to furnishing each room with comfort and aesthetics in mind, this comprehensive guide should provide you with the knowledge and strategies needed to create an exceptional short-term rental experience for your guests.


For those looking to streamline the furnishing process further, don't forget to check out our 'Airbnb Furnishing Tool' available on our Etsy shop. Happy hosting!


FAQs on Airbnb Furnishing and Design

How much should I budget for furnishing my Airbnb property?

To determine your budget for furnishing your Airbnb property, consider factors such as Price Positioning, Property Size, and Amenities. On average, Airbnb furnishing costs can range from $2,000 to $50,000, depending on your property's specific needs.

What are the must-have furniture and decor items for an Airbnb?

Where can I find affordable furnishings?

What safety measures should I implement in my Airbnb?

Are smart home features a good addition to my Airbnb?

How can I make my Airbnb property more eco-friendly?

How much should I spend when Furnishing an Airbnb?

What kind of mattress to buy for an Airbnb?

How to furnish my Airbnb on a budget?

Where to buy Airbnb furniture?