My wife and I are purchasing an acre of ground right next to a gorgeous Omni resort overlooking the golf course, and adjacent to hiking and mountain biking trails. There is a nice walking/biking trail into a nice little town which is full of restaurants, cafes, shops, bars, etc.
We plan to build a 4 bedroom, 3 bath home that will sleep 12+ (depending on final layout). 2 Masters upstairs, each with their own full bath, and an open floorplan kitchen and living area, 2 bedrooms downstairs with a large jack and jill style bathroom, with access from both rooms, and a double vanity. They'll be bunk rooms, with twin-over-full bunkbeds. The downstairs will also have a large mud room, a large game room/tv area, and a laundry room. There will be a big elevated porch on the front, looking over the golf course, and large patio on the back with a grill, firepit and possibly hot tub. It's a private, wooded lot.
Our plan is to attract people who want to use the resort amenities, like the spa, restaurants (there are 4 on site), golf course, and trails...but hotel rooms may not work the best for them. Families with kids, bridal parties that might want to all get ready together, groups of people on golf trips, a group of couples who want to get away for the weekend, groups of mountain bikers. You get the idea.
My question is, since we're starting from scratch, what are your suggestions on things we should be sure to do? Basically, things you wish you could've/would've done if you had it to do over?
Thanks in advance, can't wait to hear your ideas.
Well, I hate to tell you this, but a place that sleeps 12- "Families with kids, bridal parties that might want to all get ready together, groups of people on golf trips, a group of couples who want to get away for the weekend, groups of mountain bikers. You get the idea. "
Yes, I get the idea. And this is exactly the sort of rental that attracts partiers who will trash your house. Even if they don't trash it, how about the bridal party getting glitter all over your house that you will spend the next 6 months trying to remove from all the nooks and crannies? Make up stains all over your nice new towels? Red wine spilled on the sofa?
Families with kids? Scribbles on the walls, greasy food stains on the furniture and linens, grubby handprints on the walls, Cheezies between the couch cushions.
This is the reality of Airbnb rentals.
You have to decide what types of guests you are going to cater to and set the house up with them in mind, not try to market to all these different kinds of groups. You want to provide a rental for families with kids? Great. Make sure the place is pretty bullet-proof. Have furniture that is easy-clean, nothing upholstered, washable covers on a couch, no carpeting, for instance. Non-breakable dishware for kids, games and toys, a high chair, walls painted with scrubbable paint.
This is not the same decor and set-up that would be appealing to a group of couples, or a group of mountain bikers, see what I mean?
Having a home which holds more guests isn't necessarily better. In general, the more people, the more mess, the more potential for damages. That bridal party of 12? That will likely turn into 25-50 people in your house. "Oh, they're not all spending the night"- meanwhile they are all taking hot showers, using up the soap and shampoo and toilet paper and dirtying every towel in the house, creating mountains of garbage, driving all over the lawn, and so on.
Of course not every group will be like this. Many might leave the place clean and tidy. But it's a crap shoot.
I'm not trying to discourage you from building a place to short term rent. But spend some time reading through posts on this forum for awhile and you'll get a idea of all the challenges hosts face. Then you'll have a better idea of the type of place you want to build, the type of guests you want to market to, and the realities of dealing with the Airbnb platform.
@Ryan2148 fun question! You will need to be smart about parties etc., but on this front your best consultants are probably people who are already doing STR at that particular resort. Otherwise, my advice is to build and furnish the home as a place of business, not a personal family retreat. Opt for heavy duty, easy to clean, and easily replaceable. Minimize breakable items and moving parts. And, this can be a point of hot debate, but I say no white towels.
Honestly a new home development that close to a resort with no HOA?? I’d be shocked
point being: start with, is STR legal today? And what would it take to become illegal in the future?
One of my best tips is to design with cleaning in mind!
- Try to hardwire as much of your lighting as possible so you’re not moving floor lamps and cords around when vacuuming
- Instead of traditional nightstands mount floating shelves on either side of the bed and pick a bed frame that’s raised off the floor so your vacuum has easy access
- Induction or electric stoves are so much easier to clean than gas stoves, so have an electrician install the proper voltage for that
- And don’t install too many cabinets! It just makes it harder for guests to find the basics they are looking for and creates more headache when you are trying to explain where something might be
@Ryan2148 good! well, then the one practical tip I will add is make sure that you have some spaces you can lock off: closet or two, wherever the home security/video controls are located, etc.
And then from there think about durability and practicality. In our space we have European shower bc that's what we use in our personal homes. Pros: guests like it. Cons: since it's different from what they're used to we've had guests break it and the parts aren't sitting on a shelf at HomeDepot so that can be a challenge.
I agree with Kelly. I would build in storage for yourself for sure. Our house has a large storage attic that is only accessible through a locked door that has been fantastic for storing seasonal items that we rotate. I also agree that less is more.