Top Tips to Prepare Your Home for Holiday Guests.
Updated: May 7
There has been a considerable surge in demand for self-catering holiday accommodation during the last decade. Holidaymakers are now searching for accommodation in pristine locations like Zimbali, Simbithi, or Ballito, that make their stay feel like a luxury home away from home. As a direct result, many homeowners choose to upgrade their beach vacation home or primary residence into a beautiful getaway for holidaymakers. This article will give you some valuable tips on transforming your place into the perfect holiday home.
We will cover the following essential Tips to prepare your home for Holiday Guests:
What Do Holidaymakers Look For?
When holidaymakers book accommodation, they search for various particular features. These can include:
An essential aspect of a successful vacation rental is the location. Holidaymakers tend to be drawn to beach houses with panoramic views of the ocean or coastline and a central position for quick access to nearby shops and activities, allowing them to enjoy everything our wonderful town offers.
A crucial aspect to consider is that guests expect similar, if not more luxurious, accommodation than at home. The quality of a holiday home is essential to attract guests with great attention to detail when it comes to the décor and amenities such as a good quality king-sized bed or air-conditioning. They want to feel the excitement of experiencing the finer things in life that they do not see every day. A well-maintained and well-presented property will always perform better than one that is not inviting.
Guests want to know that they are buying into a quality holiday experience. First impressions count when trying to gain a guest's interest. The way a holiday home is presented determines whether it will be a holiday to forget or a memorable experience. First impressions are formed when an inquisitive guest views the property photos and description on a website. For the guest to make a booking, they have to love what they see.
Understanding Your Target Market.
Identifying the specific type of guests you would like to attract to your holiday home will help give you an understanding of who is likely to book your home in the future. By understanding what your guests need, you will know what your potential guests are looking for in a holiday home. Attracting a crowd of 'undesirables' who are only looking for a place to party for the weekend will lead to issues such as noise complaints and breakages. Attracting more of a family-orientated crowd will be more
suitable as they tend to be more respectful while in someone's home. After identifying this group and their particular needs or wants, you can furnish your home to suit them.
For example, you would consider family-friendly spaces rather than a well-stocked bar and entertainment area with strobe lights to attract a family group.
Points to consider may include:
• Pool net over the pool
• Plastic plates and cups
• Safe and secure outdoor areas
• Single beds in one bedroom
• Camping cot and a high chair (North Coast Holiday Homes provides this to their guests)
• Children's books
• Indoor/ outdoor games
• Information on family activities in the area
As with everything in the property industry, the rate at which you will be able to charge will largely depend on the home's location. Kwa-Zulu Natal North Coast is a trendy vacation destination with sea-facing homes generally being more attractive and in higher demand. However, this does not mean that you can charge your guest whatever you feel fits because your house has spectacular sea views. Holiday guests will not be willing to put up with substandard accommodation and accept location over quality. You will attract a higher standard of guests if your home is well maintained, tastefully furnished, and has excellent attention to detail for all the little extras that make guests feel at home. Often, guests complain that they pay high-end rental rates for a property that is presented to them as a luxury holiday home and then arrive to realize that their expectations do not match the reality. If you market your property as high-end, your guests will expect high-quality furnishings. These linens should boast a higher-than-average thread count, all major appliances and entertainment systems, and a stable Wi-Fi connection. One of the biggest mistakes homeowners can make is overpricing their holiday home. You will be able to gain more bookings and have happier guests by reevaluating the rates of your home and deciding on a fair figure to charge your guests.
Cleanliness of A Holiday Home.
It is essential not to overlook the standard of cleanliness in your holiday home. Cleanliness issues are the leading cause of guests demanding to be moved from a property or requesting refunds. Cleanliness is often commented upon in property reviews and can harm future rentals. Guests consider reviews as important first-hand information when researching where to book. It is, therefore, crucial to access the cleanliness of a home. Time and effort are required in the kitchen and bathroom areas to ensure that they are in flawless condition and free of mold. The same applies when ensuring that none of the linen or towels have any stains or marks and are kept fluffy and fresh for a guest's arrival.
A further point to consider is cluttered furniture and appliances that do not belong anywhere and are rendered a waste of space for a guest. Box up your unwanted trinkets and store them out of the way and somewhere they cannot get broken. Many smaller items in a home are irreplaceable and hold great sentimental value that you cannot replace. Remove anything of sentimental value. It is in the home-owners best interest to ensure that their guests are as comfortable as possible while staying at their holiday home.
Any holiday home should be functional enough for guests to feel effortlessly comfortable in the living space. It is vital to ensure that all appliances, lighting, and doors work seamlessly for the guests to navigate their way through a new environment. Guests should be able to adapt seamlessly to all the new features and appliances in your home without packing their own. Providing easy-to-use appliances or sufficient cupboard space with coat hangers is a great way to start. To give you more insight into this concept, we suggest packing an overnight bag and spending a night in each of your bedrooms and seeing how functional that space is!
If a guest can see something, they expect it to be functional and for their use, including air-cons, TVs, and golf carts.
Here are some suggestions that you can implement to help your future guests adapt to your home more easily:
- Provide extra blankets and an unstained duvet inner for each bed. The North Coast can experience rather unpleasant weather.
- Supply a minimum of two Plush pillows per person.
- Key box for self-check-ins and safekeeping. Many guests bring extended families, and they may not always arrive together. Key boxes keep keys from getting lost at the beach and allow guests to come and go as they wish.
- Ensure that all appliances are fully functional and that electrical and plumbing issues are dealt with immediately.
- Enough Crockery, cutlery, and glasses for the number of guests plus extra. No one wants to clean up after every snack. TIP: buy extra so that you can replace individual items rather than a complete set.
- Coffee machines are becoming an essential item with many guests asking for them.
- Good quality yet comfortable and practical furniture that will easily seat all guests. Remember that guests want to put their feet up, literally!
- Swimming pools need to be kept sparkling clean, hedges trimmed, and lawns kept short.
- Check that all light bulbs are working, remotes batteries are fresh and leave extra bulbs and batteries in a draw in case.
- Aircons need to be serviced annually to ensure that they are fully functional.
- Sharp knives, decent chopping boards, and a well-stocked kitchen for self-catering needs.
Go The Extra Mile And Impress Your Guests By Doing The Following:
- White linen and towels look classy and are relatively easy to bleach when marked. Printed linen and dark towels will have to be replaced more often.
- Ensure that there is a side lamp on both sides of each bed. No one wants to turn off the leading light after reading at night.
- Plug sockets should be easy to reach. If not, provide an extension cord as well as adaptors.
- Night light in a children's room is a welcomed addition.
- Supply complimentary soaps and facecloths to impress your guests.
- If you have a great view of the ocean and dolphins or a scenic bush view with birdlife, leave a pair of binoculars for your guests to use.
- Neatly styled reading books on the nightstand and a cookery book in the kitchen for "foodies."
- Family board games and cards for rainy days spent indoors.
Providing Support to Guests.
One of the best ways to ensure that your guests are kept happy and satisfied is to offer excellent support, encouraging repeat bookings and outstanding reviews. There will inevitably be times when problems occur while guests are in residence. However, how these unforeseen issues are dealt with will ultimately reflect in the subsequent reviews. If guests encounter snags during their stay, it's imperative to make sure things are resolved effectively and timely, exceeding expectations and positive outcomes.
North Coast Holiday Homes are the leading Holiday Rental Management Team on the beautiful KZN North Coast. With over 50 homes in Zimbali, Simbithi, and the Ballito Area on their portfolio and thousands of happy guests and homeowners. If you are looking for someone to manage your holiday rentals and help your home get the bookings it deserves, get in touch today and explore the opportunities and your disposal.
North Coast Holiday Homes is a leading luxury holiday let company specialising in the Dolphin Coast area, including Ballito, Simbithi and Zimbali. Their expertise is second to none, and you can rest assured that your luxury holiday on the Dolphin Coast will be a memory to last a lifetime.
Are you considering marketing your property? Get in touch today for more information on how we can help you get the bookings your property deserves!