Preparing Your Home

Preparing your home for photos, meeting a guest, and move-in are important for making a good impression and setting the tone for the entire relationship.  Here are 5 tips to help you get your place set up for an incoming Guest.

1. Prepare the Bedroom

cozy bed

The bedroom is the Guest’s private space and it should feel like that. Make sure you have removed all your own personal items from the room as well as anything else you might have been storing there. This includes any closet space. Also make sure the room has been recently vacuumed and dusted.

When it comes to furniture we suggest providing at least a bed, a dresser (or closet space), a night table, and optionally a desk for studying. Make sure the bed has a good mattress and if you really want to impress the guest make sure it is fully made with sheets and pillows.

TIP: For Hosts in Kelowna, Happipad has a partnership with Haven mattress

2. Tidy Up

The difference between a messy home and a clean one is substantial. There is very little that is more satisfying than entering a well-organized room, or hopping into some freshly cleaned sheets. The satisfaction of being in a clean space goes far beyond aesthetics. Research in positive psychology has found that cluttered spaces increase your risk of depression, lower attentiveness, and even increase the risks of heart disease! You’re also 19% more likely to have a good night’s sleep if your bed is made. 

Now, obviously your guest is likely not going to get ill if the bedroom is messy but providing a clean space will create a positive association between the individual and the room and set a high standard of cleanliness for the guest in their future. Be sure to declutter. Throw out what you don’t use and put away what you do use. Having an organized house makes the single biggest difference in how clean it appears.

Even a few items on the counter can make a difference in the look and feel of the household.
Everything in it’s proper place and the kitchen looks very different

But this is only the first step. Remember that once this is done you dust, wipe, sweep, vacuum, mop, and scrub whatever you would like to!

Get others involved:

It doesn’t matter if you’re living alone, or with your spouse. Whether you have six kids or six roommates, if space is shared its everyone’s responsibility to keep it clean, and help prepare it to be rented out. Try setting up a cleaning schedule, or creating some sort of chore wheel.

Styling your home – neutral setting (not too strong or bold):

This isn’t to say don’t stand out. We absolutely want you to express yourself, just keep it classy. Avoid colorful walls, out of date of finishings, and peeling paints. Try to organize your shelves, experiment with rugs and decorations, and finally banish all bad odors. Make your place look perfect, but also lived in.

This picture is a perfect example. The room is decluttered and clean but still looks warm and inviting. Notice how the shelves are being used to create a practical display. The walls are a more conservative color but there is self- expression in the rug, decorations and furniture to make the features pop.

3. Renovations

If you would like to qualify as home-sharing and not, “renting” the guest will need to share a kitchen or bathroom with you. If they don’t currently have access to shared ammenities you’ll need to do some renovations to fit the bill.

It’s also not necessary but recommended that there is a lock on the Guest’s door.

Finally, the house will need basic safety features but the more the better. You will need at least one fire extinguisher, smoke detectors, and Carbon Monoxide detectors. Home-security systems are not required but are always recommended. 

4. Allocate Space for Storage

Most’s Guests are not bringing too many items with them when they move in but you should be prepared for the items they do have.

Unless you plan to share food and cook together you should clear some space in the kitchen to designate for the Guests food items. This will include cupboard space, freezer, and fridge space. If their are valuable cook or dishware you don’t wish to be used by the guest make sure to identify it to the Guest or remove it from the regular use areas.

Also consider if the Guest may be bringing other items that need storage. Common examples include a vehicle such as a car or bicycle, towels or toiletries, or coats and shoes.

5. Be Warm

The first time your guest or potential guest see’s your home they’re going to be nervous. Try to make them feel as comfortable as possible. Make them feel at home. Help them move in, offer them some snacks. Be gracious and spend time trying to get to know them.