How to Furnish your Entire Airbnb on a $500 Budget

How to Furnish your Entire Airbnb on a $500 Budget

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Let’s face it: hosting a space that’s uniquely yours while creating mass appeal isn’t easy—especially on a tight budget. The places we live in are a reflection of ourselves and our values, and we value our guests above anything. So it’s important that these spaces appeal and cater to them.

But you also have to make sure you’re not losing money on your investment by overspending on decor and essentials. Whether you’re just starting or looking to spruce up, here is how you can furnish your entire Airbnb space on a $500 budget.

Break Down the Size of Your Space

Do you know how much real estate you’re actually furnishing? That’s key to planning how to budget and spend your dollars. If anything, you should place the most focus on furnishing the bedroom. Then use the remaining funds on the living or seating area followed by the kitchen—unless you plan to market your space as a fully-stocked kitchen and not a place for sleeping or staying the night.

Just make sure that’s specified in your listing.

Bedroom: $160-$250

Why is the bedroom going to be the main focus of your budget? Because hosting without actually providing a stellar place to sleep might not be the best idea. Unfortunately, the beds and everything you put on them are also some of the most expensive pieces of furniture and decor you’ll need to invest in. The bed alone could be where the majority of your money goes.

And Amazon has some quick solutions delivered right to your door, so you don’t have to pay extra for delivery. This queen mattress is only $160 and is a best-selling item. Make sure you plan for a quality bed frame, too, unless your aesthetic calls for floor mattresses. If you’re looking for the most bang for your bedroom bucks, investing in a futon could be a great solution as well. While it’s not the cream of the crop as far as comfort goes, it does combine couch and bed to make the most of a small space. 

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You’ll also need bedding. Typical bedding sets will usually range from $18 to $75 depending on the number of sheets and pillowcases in the set, as well as the quality. So shop around and see what you can find. You can also go thrift shopping for a vintage style but plan to give them a good wash or have them dry cleaned before laying them out for your guests.

Seating Area: $50-$100

A seating area is another great addition to have in your listing. A space for guests to set down their personal items is key to furnishing your space—and it doesn’t have to break the bank. All you need are a few focal features in the room, like a dresser handpicked from the thrift store with a quality mirror hanging on the wall above it.

Don’t have the space for a full-sized dresser?

You could use a small side table to accommodate your guest’s personal items and at least one nightstand with a lamp to invite a cozy atmosphere. If a closet is an option in your listing, snag at least one pack of hangers for guests who need to keep their garments pristine.

A handful of staple pieces are meant to fill the room but not overcrowd the guest. A reading chair and a coffee table are additions that can lift the space from an ordinary listing to an outstanding one. You can find affordable furniture with character at Goodwill or any second-hand store.

It only takes one key item for your listing to stand out and make the space feel like home. And if it’s not in your budget, don’t worry—you can always add later.

Bathroom – $70

Thankfully bathrooms come fully stocked with appliances, but towels are a necessity. You’ll need at least one per guest, along with hand towels. Depending on the type of shower, you’ll most likely need a curtain and liner. White is recommended for all of these items to help them look and last longer since it’s the easiest color to bleach.

Yes, you can (and should) bleach your shower curtain. 

You’ll need a trash can and a water-friendly rug or bathmat, so your guests are comfortable after stepping out onto the cold tile. Plus, it will help protect your flooring from messy guests. And a plunger is an absolute must. While you don’t expect guests to clean, you’ll want one on hand for accidental clogs. 

Also, plan for basic amenities like toilet paper, hand soap, and tissues. To recap, here’s a list of bathroom items needed:

  • Towels
  • Trash can
  • Shower curtain
  • Rug
  • Toilet paper
  • Plunger
  • Hand soap
  • Tissues
  • Q-tips/Cotton balls (Optional)

Don’t forget to pick up some basic toiletries for guests who’ve forgotten theirs:

  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Body Wash
  • Lotion

Dining and Kitchen – $130

Again depending on your space, you’ll need a dining table and chairs. Ikea has some cheap options, but your best bet is going to be the gems at your local thrift stores. Make sure that the chairs are comfortable but sturdy for the volume of guests you’ll have. Double-check that the table height is ADA friendly to help every guest feel cared for. 

Aside from where guests can eat, your kitchen should be stocked with dishes and silverware. Remember, you don’t need everything, just the essentials. Kitchenware typically comes in sets of four, so make sure you have at least enough for as many guests as your Airbnb listing says you can handle.

With any leftover money in your budget, you can purchase extra countertop appliances like a toaster or coffee maker. 

Designing an entire space for your Airbnb can be intimidating. But it shouldn’t overwhelm you or your guests. Don’t forget to ask friends, family, and neighbors for any items they might be willing to part with and donate to your space for free. Explore creative options for what works in your space to balance necessity, function, and fun as you furnish your entire Airbnb on a budget.

About the Author Rachel Jones

Rachel Jones is an award-winning writer and editor from Oklahoma City, OK. Her work has been published on influential sites, including Entrepreneur and International Business Times. She spent several years in property management and leasing, handling short-term rentals, student housing, and community rentals. Rachel is also experienced in staging and real estate photography. With a B.A. in English in her back pocket, Rachel combines her passion for property management with her storytelling ability to offer Airbnb hosts helpful advice as they monetize their homes.