Two brand new luxury holiday cottages in Cornwall at Sennen Cove feature in our New Property Alert. Sea the...
Winter can seem a very long season to get through, but when the lighter mornings and evenings begin to appear, we all know it’s time to start preparing for the busier season and imminent guests. Read on for five top tips from our guest writer Andrew Exelby, Commercial Development Manager, who is here to share his ideas to help get your holiday property ready for the season ahead.
It is always recommended to have some sheltered, secure storage for your garden furniture – just in case there are any weeks where the furniture is not in use. Leaving furniture outside year-round will only result in added expense and potential issues.
Timber furniture particularly can suffer in the rain or damp and if left untreated can rot. Rotten seating or surfaces not only look unsightly but cannot be relied upon to hold any significant weight (especially if the rot is advanced). Similarly, metal benches, tables and bistro sets can soon lose their sheen and become weathered or worse still corroded. Shabby chic is on-trend – but shabby shonky is most definitely not.
One of the more pleasant jobs to have after a long winter season is to dust off your gardening gear and get your outside space back to its former glory. Remember, the outdoor spaces are just as likely to have been the reason your guests booked your property, so treat the garden or patio as you would any other room in your property. Consider comfort, lighting, heating, and of course safety!
Any experienced owner will know, scuffs on walls are a given and any owner of a traditionally built cottage will tell you that regular redecoration is part of everyday life. It can be tempting to “touch up” patches with the idea of getting the property spotless, but it is often a false economy. Focus on a room at a time and work through for a consistent finish.
Your property can be a show-home internally, but could still attract negative feedback if you neglect the exterior or fail to make-good any defects resultant of a long damp low season. External walls are exposed to all weathers and soon discolour but can be easily cleaned using a pressure washer or a specialist cleaning solution. In the event you want to re-paint external walls, the cleaning will still be necessary in order to achieve a good finish which lasts.
Guests at your property during chillier weeks or months of the year are likely to have enjoyed more time indoors than the sun-seekers who visit in Spring/Summer. If they have ventured out, you can assume they had muddy boots or at the least wet coats on their return. While guests will obviously do their best not to cause any serious damage, the inevitable wear and tear on your soft furnishings needs to be thought about come spring.
To start your letting season, you want to ensure that your property is as neat as a pin; at the very least this means any significant wear or accidental damage is easily noticed by your housekeeper. Carpets, rugs, sofas, cushions and even curtains should be checked for signs of heavy wear, but don’t rush to replace them in all instances. Steam cleaning is a fantastic way of reinvigorating furniture that has worked hard through the winter – and for pet-friendly properties can be an effective way of lifting any odours.
Your fire or woodburner will have been in regular use over the winter and just because we like to believe spring and summer are glorious, you can bet your guests will want to light the fire at least once during any holiday. HETAS advise having your chimney swept at least twice a year if you burn wood or standard house coal and once a year (minimum) if burning smokeless fuels.
Sweeping regularly reduces the risk of any blockages in the chimney and also cleans the flue to prevent a build-up of any nasties that might lead to a chimney fire. A blocked chimney is one of the causes of carbon monoxide escaping into a room – it is vital all carbon monoxide and smoke detectors are checked regularly and that spare batteries are available for your guests and housekeeper.
Spring has sprung, and it’s widely acknowledged as a time of new life; no better excuse, in that case, to set about refreshing some easily upgraded elements of your holiday home! There are small, easy upgrades which should be considered regularly, but also some large ticket items which stand to transform your holiday cottage or apartment.
By refreshing smaller items annually, furnishings such as throws, rugs and cushions, which can be easily swapped out for fresh on-trend alternatives, you are ensuring your property stands out as up to date. Larger purchases like sofas and living room furniture stand not only to increase guest comfort but again, allow you to remain current in a fast-changing marketplace – all great for the marketing of your holiday home. If you want to increase the desirability of your holiday property further still, you should look at the addition of something extra special; namely a hot tub, swimming pool or a movie room – all of these items would undoubtedly mean your pricing could be increased and you would reap the rewards over time.
For more information about letting your cottage with us, visit our Let Your Cottage page or contact our knowledgeable property team on 01326 336773 (select option 2).