How to furnish a rental property that makes money and gets good reviews

Performance fabric makes sense for a rental home. Photo: Courtesy
Performance fabric makes sense for a rental home. Photo: Courtesy

Almost half of our customers over the last six months plan to rent out their home when they cannot be here themselves. It’s a great way to finance a home in paradise.

To get a good return on their furniture and décor investment, here are some tips we provide to our clients.

Since the primary objective of a rental property is to generate income, you want your place to be visually appealing to attract renters. Selecting the right décor style is important.

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Most renters prefer new, clean and clutter-free properties. Keep painted walls and large furniture in neutral tones. Add a splash of color with a feature wall and décor items such as pillows and throws. Rental properties with neutral colors book faster than those with too much color.

Avoid clutter. Review which critical pieces of furniture are required. If you have shelves in your bedroom closets, you probably do not need to get a dresser. The more furniture you add, the more could be damaged. Keep small décor pieces to a minimum and look for items that will not break if accidentally knocked over.

Don’t be afraid to invest in a good mattress. Most renters prefer a medium firm, coil mattress with a pillow top. Everyone remembers the place they stayed with a great mattress, and everyone remembers the place they stayed in an uncomfortable bed.

Another great buy is a waterproof mattress pad. Unlike the old days, the new ones are soft and made from a fabric that help keeps your mattress stain free. Buy more than one. Having two mattress pads and duplicate sets of linens and towels means less cleaning time required between the time one guest checks out and the next checks in. No one likes to show up when their room is not ready.

Although colors are pretty, your best bet for linens including sheets and towels are white. Hotels use white for a reason. White is an elegant color and whites do not fade. You can bleach them for cleanliness, and they can be washed with towels to speed up the time of cleaning between guests.

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Glass tops help wood furniture last longer. Eight millimeters of glass on top of nightstands, coffee table, and dining table will protect your furniture from scratches and condensation rings. Glass tops are inexpensive and will make your furniture look newer longer.

To keep upholstered items looking new, you cannot beat a performance fabric cover. These fabrics repel liquid.

I tested this to ensure it was as good as promised. I poured a glass of red wine on a sofa with a white color performance fabric and left it there overnight. In the morning, I wiped the red wine off. No stain. The perfect solution to repel suntan oils, creams, and sweat.

More tips coming next week.

Sheryl Novak is an expat Canadian who has owned a home in Mexico for over 10 years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico — the online furniture store for your home in Mexico. She is considered the expert on sourcing all styles of furniture, for all sizes of budgets, in Mexico. Email the author at sa.novak@solutionsmexico.com for a free newsletter on how to get good value on furniture in Mexico.

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