With its close proximity to Washington, DC, and other major New England towns, Silver Spring has long been a crash pad for tourists visiting the capital to take in the sites. It’s also a well-known retreat for staffers and think tank employees who want to take the weekend off but remain close to their offices in case something comes up, meaning that it’s an excellent area to invest in an Airbnb.
If you have a property in this highly advantageous area but are thinking of moving elsewhere, turning your current home into a rental is an excellent way to make some extra money. However, you must be intentional about your renovations, focusing both on guest comfort and protecting your investment. Today, we’ll dive into some of the important factors that will turn your Silver Springs, MD, home into a five-star accommodation on AirBnB.
Utilize Vinyl Flooring Instead of Hardwood or Tile
While you love your property and treat it with care, unfortunately, not all of your guests will be so kind. They may spill drinks that sink into the flooring or leave major water stains; if you allow pets, their animals may have accidents that are nearly impossible to clean. Some particularly destructive visitors may allow their children to scratch the floor with toys, causing deep hardwood gouges or tile cracks.
As such, vinyl plank flooring is a must for short-term rentals. It’s easy to install, has high water resistance, and can be cleaned in a few minutes with a Swiffer. Better yet, if there’s a particularly damaged section, you can cut that plank out and replace it without pulling up the entire floor.
Be Realistic About Houseware
As with flooring, you need to pick housewares that are sturdy and attractive, resistant to damage, and easy to clean. There’s no need for excessive decorations that might get broken by your guests; a few nice pictures on the wall from the bargain store provide a sense of hominess without breaking the bank. You can even use gently-used decorations from your own home that you were considering donating, further saving you money.
Melamine or plastic bowls and plates are a good investment because they are much more difficult to break than ceramic; be sure to pick microwave-safe ones so you don’t come back to melted plates. You should avoid having expensive appliances like dishwashers, washing machines, and dryers in the rental because they’re very easy to break.
Keep Basic Condiments on Hand
When guests stay in an Airbnb, they’re looking for a more homey experience than in a hotel, which often includes cooking at their accommodation. Renting a whole house usually means that your visitors expect the basics of a kitchen: a fridge, freezer, microwave, and stove. While these are certainly important, something many hosts don’t consider is the seasonings people expect when they’re cooking, such as salt and pepper. No one wants to go out and buy a whole pepper grinder that they won’t be bringing home, so make sure to keep at least these basic seasonings on hand. You might also consider having oil and vinegar, ketchup and mustard packets, and soy sauce bottles: these last a long time and don’t need to be refrigerated.
Invest in Great Bedding
While guests don’t tend to care much about plates or pictures on the wall, they definitely care about whether the bedding is nice and cozy. Soft mattresses, thick pillows, and warm coverlets are a must, especially during chilly Maryland winters when the wind whips down the rivers. Be sure to include extra pillows and blankets in a cupboard available to your guests: some people may have back problems and need extra support, or they may get cold easily and want more blankets than you might consider normal.
Your visitors will absolutely remember whether they were shivering all night, and they’ll adjust their reviews accordingly. Include a variety of blanket options, whether soft microfiber throws or heavy duvets, to ensure they are perfectly comfortable when they bed down for the night after a thrilling day walking the Rachel Carson Greenway Trail.
Consider Outdoor Spaces
Lastly, if you have a larger backyard for your rental, think about what your guests might enjoy when they visit, such as a place to gather with their family outdoors. Timber frame pavilions provide a touch of rustic luxury, and they are also incredibly sturdy, being made with old-school carpentry methods that are nearly impervious to damage. You might include a small barbecue, seating options, and a few solar lanterns in order to add a warm, sociable air.
Silver Spring is an excellent place to set up an Airbnb, and with good planning, you can develop a lucrative side business based on providing others with a magical vacation experience. Pick sturdy materials and cozy furnishings – as well as outdoor entertainment options – and you’ll get five-star reviews from every guest who is lucky enough to rent your home.