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DIY: Tips for a Successful Airbnb


No guest wants to have to run to the store for a sponge or toilet paper on vacation. Higgins uses Amazon’s subscription service to stay on top of supplies for the River Cabaan. “A lot of the admin of an Airbnb is the stock and the cleaning,” said Higgins, so streamlining the process with regular deliveries is a time-saver. Have on hand things that visitors commonly forget to pack as well, such as extra toothbrushes and deodorant, said Smola-Foti.


While the Carlton farmhouse has a lot of dedicated outdoor space, including a deck and covered porch, Smola-Foti makes sure to populate it with ample seating so that guests can take advantage of finding a place in the sun. Likewise, at the River Cabaan, there’s a hammock, too.


No one wants to dry off with a towel that’s lost its fluff, or sleep on threadbare sheets. While responsible laundering is, of course, a must, keep an eye for when these items inch past their prime, and replace them. Higgins will also swap out furniture when it’s looking a little worn, or change the art for a fresh new look.


There’s something wonderful about turning around, and having a wall hook right where you need it. Higgins suggested plenty of baskets for visitors to stow their stuff, and helpful wall hooks, especially by exterior doors and in bedrooms.


The River Cabaan offers coffee from Portland mainstay Stumptown, and shampoo and conditioner from Seattle-based Rudy’s. “Luxurious touchpoints,” Higgins called such thoughtful additions, and it’s even better if they are local products.


A fully-equipped kitchen in a rental is always appreciated, said Smola-Foti, who gets positive feedback from guests at their Airbnb for just that. Higgins includes top-notch condiments and a Chemex coffee maker alongside artisan drinkware. “Then they don’t have to worry about bringing salt and pepper and olive oil and things like that,” said Higgins. “It takes a little bit of work, but it makes the experience so much more seamless.”

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