These days, the housing rental market is extremely saturated. So, if you’re an Airbnb owner, you’re constantly looking for ways to make your listing stand out. Themed decor is a tried and true method thousands of Airbnb owners have implemented to increase the value of their rental property while also giving it a unique edge. After all, you’re not in this business to run a hotel. You’re in this business to craft a unique rental property that directly contributes to housing shortages in a city you don’t live in or care about. And your listing’s decor should reflect that!

While not all decor themes are to everyone’s taste, we’ve found that the following themes are the most frequently utilized by Airbnb owners. Check them out and consider incorporating a theme into your own rental property!

Colors

A colorful theme could very well be all it takes to get some people hooked. But if you really want to commit to this theme, we can’t stress using bold colors enough. Like super fucking bold. So bold your guests will be like, “What the fuck? Why are these colors so bold?” You’ll want to choose colors that are bold not in a self-expressive way, but in a way born purely out of a desire to make others feel small. Make entering your Airbnb a confrontational experience. Rude, even. Your entryway should be the color equivalent of telling someone they should smile more.

Seashells

Make your listing say “I dont give a fuck about this town” by incorporting a seashell-based theme into the two bedroom home you own in Cleveland, Ohio, for some reason. Upon entering your Airbnb, most people will assume you’re going for some sort of beach theme. But it never extends beyond seashells. Seashells everywhere. Put them in the bed. Leave them stacked cryptically on the back porch during the night. You’ll have your guests wondering, “Wait, were those there when we arrived?” This is even more effective if the town your Airbnb is located in is absolutely not a beach town in any respect. Beach theme in a beach town? Tacky. Beach theme in a mountain town? Camp. And wildly unsettling.

I definitely live in this city. For sure.

Win over the trust of your guests by centering your theme on living in and enjoying living in whatever city it is that you’re actively gentrifying. Staples of this theme include: numerous framed maps of the city your Airbnb is located in, posters of local restaurants you’ve clearly never been to, and a hand-written note profusely apologizing for the lack of any Targets in the immediate vicinity. You’ll definitely find a bike that has never been ridden hanging on the wall, alongside a “HOME” decal that is a blatant lie. This theme says, “This is no one’s home, but, please, make yourself at home (for $200 a night).”

Hair everywhere

Not dog hair. Loose hair. You’ll want your guests asking, “Does a barber live here?” and
“Is this one of those salons that just looks like somebody’s house on the outside but when you look in the window you’re like, ‘Oh, that’s a salon!’”

Money

Really lay it on thick how much money you have to put into furnishing an entire separate house that you don’t even live in. Make it impossible for your guests to not notice. Rub it in their faces a little. In a mean way. Like when restaurants are mean to you and, yeah, it’s funny, even though everything they say is true and it hurts you deeply in a way you’ll never admit to yourself, let alone anyone else. Your guests will love it!

Hyper Minimalism

Take minimalism to the next level by incorporating suffocating nothingness into your design. No furniture, no utensils—make it almost claustrophobically barren. Here’s the thing: when your guests arrive, they’re going to think “this doesn’t look like a home.” And then they’ll call you and ask “Wait, I’m sorry, we just arrived, is this the right address?” And you’ll offer a gruff “Yes, there’s only one address.” Really let the disdain bleed into your voice. And then they’ll hang up and think, There’s no way this is worth $200 a night. And they’ll be completely right. It isn’t worth $200 a night.

Threatening Minimalism

Similar to hyper minimalism, except this time guests feel as if it might directly affect their well-being. Think: exposed. Minimalistic. Huge windows, no curtains. Exposed beams, exposed wiring, exposed plumbing, open-concept drywall. More beams. A two-way mirror. No locks. Beams, beams, beams. Cut the phone lines. Shut off the breaker box. Let the space speak for itself.

Are they still here? I feel like they’re still here. Like, am I being crazy?

This is a decor style that’ll be sure to keep your guests guessing. If you’re still around, that is. This theme relies on its subtlety. It’s a fine line: too bold and the theme quickly becomes, “We were told nobody else would be here, why are you watching HGTV in the living room?” Too subtle, and you’re just looking at spending a Memorial Day weekend hidden in the crawl space of your very own home. Sorry—property you own.

No matter how you end up decorating your Airbnb, just be sure to select a theme that speaks to a hungry niche. Whether they’re hungry for your theme, hungry for affordable housing, or simply hungry for food, it doesn’t matter. We just like seeing people hungry. And we know you do too.


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