The past few weeks I have been focusing on rental properties with advice on curb appeal, home staging and photography tips for advertising, (links at the end of this post). Today I want to discuss decorating and furnishing a holiday rental, focusing on the living room. I will cover colour palettes, furnishing and decorative tips and my “go to” sofa that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, believe me you can still have a gorgeous looking room even on a tight budget.
To successfully decorate and rent out a holiday home, first it should be located in a convenient, safe location. Whether by the beach, country or city, it must be a sound building (no leaks etc) and spotlessly clean. Today’s post however, is not about renovating or fixing things up, but focused on decorating the interior. We will presume the renovating has been done and you are ready to furnish, however I do want to touch on paint colour and flooring.
Decorating a holiday rental means making it look welcoming throughout. However, today we are focusing on the living room, the remainder of the house will be covered in further posts.
When people search for a holiday home they will look at location first and then properties that catch their eye. Most will be drawn to places that are light, airy and well decorated. The ones that usually stand out have neutral palettes, comfortable furniture and are beautifully presented. Well designed interiors do not mean you have to spend a fortune, there are many options. It is about selecting the right pieces and how you pull them together. In saying that, it takes more than just a beautifully furnished property to rent it out successfully. You also need to be a knowledgeable landlord, so if you are new to renting you may be interested to read an informative post at Costello Realty and Management about ways of being a better landlord.
Paintwork should be kept neutral, a soft white throughout the house will make it feel spacious and future ‘touch ups’ simple. My favourite “go to” white is Resene Double Alabaster, a bisque white, delicately shaded towards grey. I have used this in my studio and love it so much I want to paint my entire cottage with it. There are a myriad of whites out there so do a little research first but stay away from whites that throw blue, pink or mauve as every white has a coloured undertone. I definitely recommend you try samples on your wall and look at them at different times during the day. There is a great post on 20 Best white paint colours on Elle Decor that will definitely help you choose the right white.
This should be decorated with minimal furniture, yet made warm and welcoming. If you are in a coastal location it is nice to have a few nautical touches, but don’t over do it, you don’t want to fill the house with shells, yachts and anchors, less is best.The palette should remain restful so start with a basic sofa of a neutral colour, I prefer beige or light grey tones. You could add a couple of chairs upholstered in a pattern if you wish or keep these neutral, adding pattern and colour with cushions. Removable covers come in handy and are available on the sofa I am going to recommend. What is important is getting the place rented out so it needs to be beautifully decorated and well photographed to compete against other holiday homes in the area. Last week I wrote a post on how to photograph your holiday home which is a must read when you have finished your decor.
Start with a basic sofa or sectional depending on your space. A three seat is preferable, however a two seat can work if you add two chairs. Much will depend on the size and layout of your room so measure up and buy a 3 seat if you have space.
Above: An antique chair adds personality to this space and compliments the neutral sofa. Pattern can be introduced with a rug and cushions. A bookshelf is a great idea and can include a few decor pieces alongside, some holiday reading for your guests – Interior design by Kate Jackson Design
Cushions will pull a room together and are the best way to introduce pattern, colour and punch to your space. Blue and white, pale greys and beige tones look great in a coastal holiday home. Look for a few cushions in different patterns of the same tones. A country cottage looks smart in black and white buffalo checks or black and white stripes against warm, white walls.
Above: Buffalo checks and stripes in black and white depict a country look – Image via Pinterest
It is the little things that pull a room together and add personality and charm, however it is important not to overdo these or you will end up with a room that looks cluttered. One or two pieces is all that’s required. You could place a plant on a coffee table or side table and maybe a couple of nice books beside it. If you are unable to have live plants then you could use realistic faux ones that look just as good.
Above: Succulents look fabulous in coastal homes and require little water, however you can buy faux succulents – Image via Luxe Studio Design
Above: Image via Amber Interior Design