Clever Airbnb Design Hacks You'll Want To Use In Your Own Home

Did you know that design is one of the reasons people choose to book Airbnb units instead of hotels? According to Statista, almost 25% of those surveyed stated "uniqueness of unit" as a motivating factor. Many hosts know this and go to great lengths to make their units stand out. But Airbnb accommodation is a business, and so hosts have to carefully balance cost with visual impact. The result? Some super clever decorating ideas that look great and won't break the bank.

And you don't have to own an Airbnb unit to take inspiration from these tips. Lots of these interior design tricks can apply to a regular home. They range from using wallpaper to make a statement, to how to make paint look like wallpaper, and how to make faux plants look deceptively real in a matter of minutes. If you've ever stayed in a beautiful Airbnb and secretly wished it was your home, here are some of the cleverest interior hacks that savvy hosts deploy (and that you can copy).

Create an accent wall close to your entryway

Accent walls can be a great way to add interest and create a focal point. Got a bland entryway that you're not sure what to do with? Why not wallpaper one side (or the far end) and mount a mirror? Or, paint out the inside of a mudroom closet or liven up dead space under the stairs with a geometric DIY wall pattern. Accent walls can also help to define spaces, so if you have an eating area that feels like it's "floating" in the room, adding an accent wall behind it can help to ground the arrangement. 

Add depth with mirrors

Using mirrors to make rooms feel bigger is an old trick — but there are times when hanging up a regular mirror might look out of place. In this video, the Airbnb host combined four mirrors to create a feature that feels like an art installation while also reflecting light and creating extra visual depth. To steal this idea, measure the wall space you want to decorate. For a modest area, you might be able to go with something like this basic wall-mount mirror from Amazon. For something larger, Amazon also sells these square vanity mirrors.

Keep the color of your towels and crockery consistent

One of the simplest ways to get that luxurious Airbnb vibe is to have matching towels and crockery. Only selecting white towels for your bathroom is probably the most practical option. Not only is it easy to match white towels, but you can bleach them without ruining the color. Not sure what to do with all those mismatched mugs? Using them as planters, scoops, and bird feeders are just a few examples of creative ways you can repurpose coffee mugs around the house.

Fiddle with your faux plants for a more realistic look

Faux plants can  a double-edged sword in design. They can get you that lush look minus any maintenance or natural light requirements, but obviously faux plants can feel cheap and tacky. For a more realistic look, try tinkering with the shape of the leaves and stems. Bend out the branches, flatten the leaves, and manipulate them until you achieve a more natural look. Placing moss, stones, or bark around the base can help disguise a clearly fake stem. And if you want to make faux plants look real on your home's exterior, mix them into an arrangement with real plants.

Pick one accent color per room

Want to experiment with more color in your home décor? Picking a single accent color per room is an easy way to start. This Airbnb host keeps his design cohesive by creating a base of neutral tones and incorporating one eye-catching color through things like scatter cushions, blankets, and art. Not sure what accent hue to choose? Look at the neutral tones that are already in the space. If they're predominantly cool, such as shades of gray, adding some warm tones to the mix, like red or yellow, can create balance. 

Hype up your fireplace

Making an Airbnb listing pop is all about hyping up noteworthy features, such as great views or amenities like fireplaces. To turn your fireplace into a focal point, consider creating an accent wall that goes from the hearth up to the ceiling. In this video, the creator installed thin timber strips vertically and horizontally, which adds dimension and frames out the fireplace. But you can achieve a similar effect by simply painting the wall your fireplace is on in a dark, moody color and making the mantel white. 

Put a hotel touch on toilet paper

There's nothing cute about extra toilet rolls — unless you give them the hotel treatment. You can make spare rolls decorative by removing 6–8 squares, placing these on top of the roll in opposite directions, and then pushing down the middle of the pile to create a flower effect. Alternatively, if you don't have the time or patience to pretty up new toilet rolls, you can quickly hide them away by mounting a hook for a hanging basket, or use this clever IKEA TRONES hack to create a cabinet for spare TP. 

Use black accents to inject some sophisticated attitude

Contrast is key to preventing designs from feeling flat. If you've got lots of light furnishings and pale walls, pops of black can add the perfect edge. In this video, a black accent wall makes a strong statement as you enter the apartment. The color is repeated in the bedroom, on the kitchen island, and on the dining room ceiling, which creates cohesion. If you're not keen on feature walls, keep in mind that you can achieve a similar, just subtler effect with small items like lamps, art, side tables, and accent chairs.

Add personality with wallpaper

Installing wallpaper is a surefire way to elevate a basic space, which is one of the reasons why it's so popular with Airbnb hosts. If you're scared of commitment or don't own your home, you can install renter-friendly, removable products and skip the mess (and learning curve) associated with traditional wallpaper. If you're wary of pattern and color, you can always go for a very subtle design, such as this faux grasscloth wallpaper from Amazon. Craving a dramatic transformation? Create a big moment by opting for something like this forest mural (also available on Amazon).

Create a faux wallpaper effect with paint

If you want to save some dollars and get the wallpaper look for less, @house_of_boggs shows how you can use tape and a laser level to paint a repeating pattern and create an accent wall. Simply mark out a grid with painter's tape, and then use a sponge brush (with the tip cut flat) to stamp an alternating pattern. This is just one of many faux painting techniques you can try, such as brushing wet paint for a fabric look or even using a rubber stamp like in this faux wallpaper TikTok hack.

Choose trundle beds over bunk beds

Unless you're decorating a small kid's room, bunk beds aren't going to look very classy. For situations where you want extra sleeping space but don't have room for a double bed, use this clever Airbnb host's tip and consider using a trundle bed. You can pick up a solid pine twin trundle bed from Amazon for just under $200, or opt for something like this upholstered daybed (also available on Amazon) if you're furnishing an office or living room.

Printed upholstery and patterned bedding are better at hiding stains

If you're looking to get more longevity from upholstered items and bedding, here's a smart piece of Airbnb host advice: choose patterns and prints over plain options. Prints can make marks and stains less visible, which is ideal for items that can't be bleached. This savvy tip also applies to rugs and mats. For ultimate stain-hiding power, choose a design with an intricate pattern, such as a Persian-style print or faux vintage rug, like this washable indoor doormat from Amazon

Large custom art can help tie your design together

In this video, @milliondollarrenter explains how he uses giant custom artwork to make his listings stand out. Not only does large art look high-end, but it can also create an impactful focal point and help tie your color scheme together. Don't have the budget to commission an artist? You can always DIY a piece using a technique like the plaster wall art trend, then paint the plaster to match your space. Alternatively, search online for prints using your desired colors as keywords, and hang them up in frames.

Install a sleek paper towel holder

If you want your home to feel like a well-appointed Airbnb, now is the time to create a convenient solution for your paper towel roll. @superhostbae shows how she makes guests' lives easier by attaching a paper towel holder to the underneath of the kitchen cabinets in her unit. You can pick up similar ones on Amazon for less than $10, or make your own for just a couple of bucks using a plastic coat hanger paper towel holder DIY.

Turn paper towel rolls into décor with a few well-placed tucks

If you want to display spare paper towel, @deetakesovercleaning shares how you can make rolls look cute with one fold, a quick tuck, and a napkin fan made from a torn-off sheet. Once you're done, you can place the roll in a guest bathroom, on your countertop, or on a shelf. As she mentions, there are numerous other methods out there, so feel free to get creative. You can also store paper towel rolls in plain sight by repurposing a shoe rack or sewing a fabric holder. 

Turn a closet into a mood room

Ever wished for your own private sanctuary to retreat to and meditate or read? Well, Airbnb hosts show that you don't have to own a mansion to get your wish. In this video, @agathers21 gives us a tour of a "mood room" created from a walk-in closet. After clearing out a spare closet of its contents and railings, all you have to do is create some comfy seating with cushions, mount a shelf for things like books, candles, and ornaments, and install some cozy lighting, such as a table lamp and string lights.

Look for lamps that have USB ports in their base

Tired of fishing around behind your nightstand every time you want to plug a device in to charge? This Airbnb host hack will solve the issue for good. Simply invest in a bedside lamp that has a USB charging port built into the base, such as this dimmable one from Amazon. If you love your current table lamp and don't want to replace it any time soon, then look into decorative charging solutions, such as this wireless option in genuine stone from Target.

White bedding gives classic hotel vibes (and is easily bleachable)

If you want your bedroom to feel like a luxury hotel, then white bedding is the way. Airbnb hosts like white sheets because stains are easy to bleach out. Wave goodbye to spilled coffee ruining your new comforter. White is also easy to match. And don't think that white bedding has to be boring. You can still jazz up the color palette by incorporating a richly colored throw blanket and some extra cushions. With this approach, you can switch out the colors seasonally while keeping your base bedding the same.

Incorporate location-themed décor

Even if you aren't decorating a holiday unit, it can still be fun to display décor that speaks to your location. No, you don't have to hang up mass-produced city signs, but some thoughtfully curated items, such as old photos of your area or even maps, can look very chic. For some free décor, look to your landscape. Things like dried grasses and flowers can all help make your home feel like it's part of its surroundings. Buying local art is also a great way to support and celebrate your community.

Protect your upholstery

This isn't a sexy interior design tip, but it can save you a lot of money and stress. Whether you want to make your home more pet-friendly, have kids, or simply want to preserve that white sofa, applying a layer of Scotchgard (or a similar product) is a smart move. Just make sure you do a test patch to ensure the colorfastness of your fabric, never use on leather, and avoid oversaturating upholstery with product, as this can cause discoloration and make you feel like Scotchgarding furniture is a big mistake