Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Make your home work for you: rent it out to short-term guests

The recession has meant that increasing numbers of Londoners are under financial strain. Homeowners may be interested to hear that they can make money by renting out their empty house whenever they are away on holiday - a common-sense way to boost your income. If you have a nice home, why not open it to guests? Just remember you will need to be prepared in order to make the most from this wonderful opportunity.

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image credit: Peter Glenday)
Before guest arrive in your home, be sure to go through every room in your house and have a deep clean. Remember to arrange somewhere to store all of your personal items. A popular option is to put these precious items into one locked-off room; alternatively, you could contact a professional storage firm. It is important to bear in mind guests will require free use of all table-tops and kitchen-surfaces - so always clear away all items likely to be in their way.

Any person who travels in order to stay in your house will want to feel at home. To help ease their settling-in process, provide your visitors with some essential items - like bread and tea. Encourage your guests by leaving helpful notes explaining that the things in your kitchen cupboard are for their use.

You can improve your guests experience by leaving them some chocolate or wine (sure to brighten up a rainy day). This will display the fact that you care about your guests. In fact many guests will repay this goodwill with a gesture of their own....

Your home should be your pride and joy. Make your guests see it looking good by making every effort to improve its appearance. Top tips are to check your outdoor paintwork and replace dirty or damaged furniture. The more effort you make, the more your guests will enjoy their stay, the more likely they are to come back!

Remember, everybody makes mistakes. To prevent accidents turning into catastrophes leave some basic maintenance tools, light bulbs and some batteries in your home. Always service your electrical equipment. Finally, provide your guests with the telephone number of a trusted friend who could help in the event of a major problem with the house.

One way to really make a good impression is to leave some friendly advice for your guests, tell them where to get good food locally or what amenities are available nearby. This information can really improve someone's stay. They may even recommend you to their friends. Helpful tips about the local neighbourhood will make your guests fit into London better; so if you can help - do so.

Providing your guests with a map or guidebook shows thoughtfulness. Your insider knowledge might make a big difference to your guest's holiday; for this reason take your time and think hard about the type of thing you would like to do if you were visiting the area for the first time. Always remember the harder you work the more likely your guests are to enjoy themselves and want to come back in the future.