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Clean Living Room with White Couch and Modern Coffee Table

21 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Airbnb Guests

Listing your home on Airbnb as a vacation rental or short-term rental? It’s time to get ready for guests! From home cleaning and maintenance to staging your property and taking professional photos, check out these 21 ideas for getting your home ready for Airbnb!

Remove Personal Items

Modern Converted Apartment Space with Unique Lighting. Photo by Instagram user @manmanstudios

Photo via @manmanstudios

If you’re renting out a home you live in, be sure to remove any personal or valuable items, such as household bills, family heirlooms, and jewelry. You can either keep these items in a locked room or move them to a storage unit. Feel free to leave out items your guests may find interesting like books, wall art, or photos. These items also serve as a gentle reminder to your guests that they’re staying in someone’s home.

Clean Your Home

Small Cottage Airbnb with Loft

Photo via @trottcottage

Before guests stay in your house, you need make sure your house is tidy. This means deep-cleaning every room and surface including blinds, walls, light fixtures, floors, and baseboards. Make sure the trash is taken out and that high-touch surfaces like counters, doorknobs, remotes, light switches, and tables are sanitized. Creating a clean home is key to competing with hotels and getting good reviews on Airbnb!

Take Care of Maintenance

Backyard Pool with Corner Pergola, Xeriscaping, and Cloth Overhangs Providing Shade. Photo by Instagram user @pegasus_trail

Photo via @pegasus_trail

Every home has regular maintenance that needs to get done, so knock that out before guests arrive! Check that all lights are working. Wash the windows inside and outside to remove grime. Schedule an HVAC system checkup and replace air filters. Look under sinks for any signs of leaks, and be sure all drains are clog-free. If you have a pool, inspect the filter, skimmer, and pump to ensure they’re working properly.

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Prepare for Weather & Emergencies

Ski Cabin with Fresh Snow Surrounding It. Photo by Instagram user @caseranyc

Photo via @caseranyc

Disasters and emergencies are inevitable, so you should prepare as best as you can by equipping your home with the necessary supplies for your guests. Place a fire extinguisher in an easy-to-find spot near the kitchen. Install fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home. Include a first-aid kit in the bathroom. Have shovels and ice melt on hand if your home is in an area that gets snow. And prep for any severe weather by stocking up on flashlights, weather radios, batteries, and nonperishable food.

Update the Locks

Switch out your front door lock with a keyless entry! Digital locks allow you to create a personalized code for each guest. It also means a faster check-in and check-out process, remote access for the host, no contact rental options, and zero worry about replacing lost keys. Not to mention, these locks offer you and your guests more security features like tamper and failed attempt alerts.

Fix Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is crucial to drawing travelers to your Airbnb rental property! Spruce up the outside of your home by mowing the lawn, trimming back bushes, adding fresh mulch to garden beds, planting fresh flowers, and tackling other small DIY landscape projects. Give your home’s exterior a fresh coat of paint and add more landscape lighting around pathways. And be sure to clear the driveway and walkways for guests!

Provide Basic Kitchen Essentials

Many people choose to stay in an Airbnb versus a hotel for the convenience of having a kitchen. Before guests arrive, stock your kitchen with the cooking essentials they may need. Include basic items like pots, pans, utensils, cutting boards, oven mitts, and dish towels along with common condiments and spices. And don’t forget to include plates, bowls, silverware, and cups for the amount of guests your home can handle!

Test Your Kitchen Appliances

Make sure all of your large and small kitchen appliances are in working order before allowing guests to use them. This means testing the stove, oven, dishwasher, microwave, and coffeemaker for any problems. In addition, check to see if your refrigerator and freezer are running properly.

Set Up a Place to Eat

One of the major draws to Airbnbs is being able to cook, so your rental should have a place for guests to gather for meals. If you have room in the kitchen or a designated dining room, provide a dining table and chairs for the maximum number of guest you allow. Have a small space? Include stools at the island or TV trays!

Make a Relaxing Living Room

Modern Living Room with Orange Couch. Photo by Instagram user @jtreebnb

Photo via @jtreebnb

Create a cozy space where your guests can kick back and relax after a day of sightseeing! Fill this living space with comfy seating options like a couch, loveseat, or oversized accent chairs. Enhance your living room area with good lighting, a coffee table, end tables, and plenty of throw pillows and snuggly blankets!

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Add WiFi & Streaming Services

Large Living Space with White Couch and TV on Wall. Photo by Instagram user @bestnestliving

Photo via @bestnestliving

One of the most asked for amenities with Airbnb rentals is WiFi. Offering free internet access to your guests not only gives you a competitive edge, but you can also expand your pool of renters to include business travelers who may need access to the web to work. Along with WiFi, it’s a good idea to provide a TV with access to cable or a smart TV that guests can use to stream their favorite shows!

Create a Cozy Bedroom

Put together a cozy bedroom so your guests wake up feeling refreshed after a long day of exploring a new city! Opt for a bed with a sturdy headboard and durable memory foam mattress, and don’t forget to change the mattress cover regularly. Place nightstands next to the bed with a clock and lamps. If the bedroom gets a lot of natural light, hang blackout curtains so your guests will be able to sleep in.

Clear Out Closets & Dressers

When getting your home ready for Airbnb guests, include clearing out closets and dressers to your to-do list! Give your guests enough room and shelving options to store their clothing and accessories while staying at your home. You might also provide a clothing rack, luggage rack, or wardrobe as alternatives.

Have Clean Linens on Hand

Minimalist Bedroom with Green Walls. Photo by Instagram user @mountnouveau

Photo via @mountnouveau

Make sure your Airbnb rental has enough clean linens for your guests! Prepare bedroom essentials like a full set of sheets, including a fitted sheet, top sheet, and a pillowcase along with either a comforter or duvet. Provide bathroom linens like bath towels, hand towels, and washcloths. Store extra linens in a closet so your guests can easily grab one if they need more!

Stock Up on Toiletries

Including toiletries in your bathroom makes for an even better rental experience! Stock linen closets and bathrooms with toilet paper, facial tissues, hand soap, shampoo, and body wash! You might also include a hair dryer, lotion, razors, toothpaste, and toothbrushes to go the extra mile.

Get the Laundry Room Ready

One of the biggest perks when staying in an Airbnb is being able to do laundry! If your rental home has a laundry room, be sure to include the basics like detergent, dryer sheets, and an ironing board. Don’t have a laundry room at home? Give your guests recommendations for local laundromats. Or if you’re renting an apartment or condo, let your guests know about a communal laundry room!

Update the Patio or Deck

Backyard Patio with String Lights Overhead. Photo by Instagram user @arborand.co

Photo via @arborand.co

Give your backyard a refresh by updating your patio or deck! Repair any damaged floor boards and thoroughly clean the space. Consider remodeling the patio and restaining the deck or adding a pergola for shade. And make sure you set up cozy patio furniture like patio chairs, a table, or even an outdoor sectional if you have the space to give guests a place to relax.

Amp Up Your Outdoor Space

Backyard Pool with Inflatables Floating Around. Photo by Instagram user @maisonblueps

Photo via @maisonblueps

Designing a welcoming outdoor living space can help draw more guests to your Airbnb rental! Have fun with string lights, torches, or lanterns for backyard lighting. Add a grill and all the grilling essentials for outdoor cooking. Set up a hot tub for year-round relaxation. And if your Airbnb is in an area where a pool investment makes sense, add a pool!

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Include House Rules

As you’re getting ready to rent out your home for Airbnb, consider creating a welcome binder with house rules and information about local amenities. Let guests know your smoking policy, maximum number of guests, quiet hours, and pet policies. Write down instructions for the TV, AC and heating systems, security, WiFi passwords, parking, and trash days. Include notes on nearby gas stations, grocery stores, and popular neighborhood restaurants and attractions as well. And be sure to leave your contact information in case your guests need to get in contact with you!

Have Your Home Staged Professionally

All White Bedroom with White Linens. Photo by Instagram user @simplifycohost

Photo via @simplifycohost

With so many Airbnb vacation rentals for people to choose from, you’ll really want to make your space stand out so that guests find you. One way you can do this is by staging your home. With professional home staging, a stager or decorator will come into your home and clear out overcrowded spaces, rearrange furniture, and set up your home decor so that it photographs better for rental listings.

Invest in Real Estate Photography

To have a successful listing on Airbnb, you need good real estate photography. If you’re taking DIY real estate photos, be sure to use a professional camera, tripod, and as much natural light as possible. If, however, you have the budget, consider hiring a professional real estate photographer, as they’re more experienced and will have the necessary equipment. Remember, photos are the first impression of your Airbnb home!


Preparing your home for Airbnb guests? You can store personal items and other valuable belongings in a secure storage unit at Extra Space Storage. Find self storage near you!

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