The beautiful Cotswolds, covering over 800 square miles of rolling hills and historic villages, is a prime location for a holiday cottage. As a property owner, ensuring your holiday rental meets the highest standards is key to attracting the right guests all year round. In this article we will help you understand how to prepare your cottage for holiday let management. Ensuring everything from the bedrooms to the living areas and the outside space are prepared, making it easy for you to attract guests to your Cotswold property.

Holiday Let Management, The Right Way

Key advice from your holiday let management agency is to remind you that potential guests will be viewing your property online. When you list your property with StayCotswold our expert team will take professional photographs and write an enticing description. All you need to do is make sure that your property is furnished and prepared to deliver a home from home experience for your future guests.

Choosing to partner with a holiday letting management agency, such as StayCotswold, will ensure you receive the support and guidance you need to help your holiday home attracts guests with ease. 

Living Spaces: The Heart of Comfort

Cotswold cottage sitting room

It goes without saying that the living areas should be inviting and comfortable. You will need to ensure there are enough seating options for all your guests – so if your property sleeps eight you need to make sure your sitting room has enough space and seats for all eight guests to relax in comfort. 

To attract the right quality of guests, and make your property appeal to a wide audience,  you will want to consider the layout and décor. A blend of traditional charm with modern comforts often appeals to a broad range of visitors and you will want each of the rooms throughout the property to flow and follow a similar interior style. To make it feel like a home from home you should consider the addition of decorative pieces such as local art or photography on the walls and window sills along with rugs, cushions and throws to soften and add a cosy feeling to the living spaces.

Kitchen: Combining Functionality with Charm

Kitchens are often the focal point of a self-catering holiday home, and where possible we generally recommend an open-plan, ear-in style kitchen/dining space. Once the layout is agreed the fixtures and fittings will need to be of a high-standard and quality that can withstand daily use. A dishwasher is a must, along with a good sized fridge and freezer. Again think about how many people your property will sleep. A sleeps 8 property will need enough space for a long weekend’s worth of food and drinks, a dishwasher large enough to take all of the plates and serving dishes from one meal, and a dining table roomy enough to seat all of your guests. 

Beyond the fixtures and fittings guests will expect a well-stocked kitchen with all the necessary utensils for cooking and dining. It is worth doubling up on crockery and cutlery so that guests don’t run out of mugs between breakfast and lunch. And have a wide selection of glasses, pots, pans and oven proof serving dishes. Also don’t forget younger guests – a highchair and selection of plastic plates/cups etc are a good addition.

Between guests, your cleaning team will check your property for breakages and damages and report back to ensure your holiday let management team can replace any items and prepare your property for your next guests.

Bedrooms: A Haven of Rest

Bedrooms of a hotel standard are pretty much the norm in holiday cottage rentals. For guests, comfort is paramount, meaning you will need to invest in good quality beds and bedding. And across the bedrooms again think about your potential guests and the selection of beds you will need. A king size in the master bedroom, twin beds in the other rooms, or a bunk bed in one room as a fun idea for little guests.

Cotswold cottage bedroom with open beams

The interior design and additional features, beyond just the bed, will ensure you attract guests with ease. Enough space for clothes, a dressing table with mirror if there is space, bedside tables with reading lamps as well as soft furnishings such as throws and cushions will add a little touch of luxury.

Bathrooms: A Blend of Luxury and Practicality

Bathrooms should be fitted out with high quality fixtures and fittings and decorated to ensure they are easy to keep spotlessly clean and well-maintained. Guests will expect a mix of showers and baths, and again for a property of three or more bedrooms guests will expect a second bathroom. 

Underfloor heating, somewhere to dry towels and a consistent hot water supply are absolute musts. And soft and fluffy towels and bathmats deliver that quality feel to guests.

two beautiful Cotswold cottage bathrooms

Bathrooms are another area where your holiday let management team will want to ensure maintenance is kept on top of. Leaky taps, limescale build up on tiles and shower screens along with any first signs of damp are all elements that you should be having checked between each departure and arrival of guests.

Outdoor Areas: Embracing the Cotswolds Charm

With the Cotswolds being a year round destination, having outdoor space for  guests to enjoy is an added bonus. This obviously depends on the location of your cottage – with village centre properties more likely to have a small terrace compared to edge of village or more rural properties benefiting from a garden – hopefully with sweeping views of the Cotswold countryside.

Whatever the size, your garden or patio area will need to be well-maintained and inviting to guests. All weather outdoor seating and space for a BBQ will work well for those property photos and help guests to envision themselves enjoying the outdoor space. But always remember your outdoor spaces on your checklist to ensure you keep on top of your holiday let management all year round.

Preparing for photos: presenting your property well

At the start of your holiday cottage ownership journey you will need to prepare your Cotswold holiday let for photographs to feature on the booking website. It is crucial to focus on creating a welcoming and appealing environment with rooms staged with props to allow your guests to imagine themselves, using your holiday property in person. To find out more about preparing your holiday let for photography read our comprehensive guide.

Preparing your property to make it easy for you to attract guests involves attention to detail and an understanding of your guests’ needs. That’s where the expert team at StayCotswold can help. Our team can offer advice on every aspect of preparing your Cotswold holiday cottage to deliver an outstanding guest experience. With thoughtful Cotswold holiday letting management, your property can stand out in this competitive market.