How to Accommodate Your Guests Through COVID-19
Due to travel restrictions and continued health concerns regarding COVID-19, many people are shifting the way they travel. Local trips have grown in popularity, along with the use of rental homes instead of hotels. Traveling to local areas gives them the feel of a vacation without having to be exposed to large crowds (i.e. airports and train stations).
Short-Term rentals give them the peace of mind because there’s less person-to-person contact and overall more privacy. However, with health and safety being at the forefront of everyone’s mind, many hosts are exploring new ways to make their guests feel most at ease. Whether you are a seasoned host, or a new host just starting out, continuously revisiting your procedures will only strengthen your listing. Sevenfold has composed some easy ways to make beneficial adjustments that we think will make your prospective guests feel comfortable and excited for their stay!
Create Contact-Free Check-Ins
Many rental hosts already use smart locks and lock boxes. If you don’t already have one in place, now is a great time to start! You can find key-less locks at just about any hardware store or online. We’ve seen some models as low as $50 and up to $200 or more. Whatever you spend, you will make up for by giving your guests that extra peace of mind knowing they can use a quick, simple code to get in.
When establishing a self check-in procedure, be sure to give clear instructions. We recommend changing the code regularly and sanitizing the lock after each visit.
Enhance Your Cleaning Procedures
Refining and enhancing your cleaning procedures is a vital step to creating an ideal listing. By implementing a regular and consistent cleaning procedure, you can ensure your home is as germ free as possible. If you haven’t already, including this process in your listing, or a statement regarding it, can bring comfort to your prospective guests.
We recommend doing your cleaning in various steps to make sure each room is treated with the same attention. Once you’ve done the initial spot clean, strip the rooms of their linens. Sometimes it can be hard to tell if a towel or bed has been used so we recommend cleaning all linens, even if they look unused. Always separate your linens into like colors and wash in small loads. By doing smaller loads while you clean, you can ensure you don’t over-dry the linens and overall save time. If you have back-to-back stays and need a quick turnaround, make sure you are stocked up or take the linens home to wash!
Next, would be the sanitizing. While we all are familiar with wiping down surfaces, it’s important to take extra precautions and sanitize all other areas/items, if you aren’t already. Sanitary wipes or sprays can be used on most high-traffic surfaces such as counter-tops, door knobs and handles, light switches, tables, and more. Consider sanitizing these items more regularly (i.e. after each visit): Dishes, Furniture, and Linens.
Quick Sanitizing Tips
For Dishes: Wash and Rinse with anti-bacterial dish soap. Then, soak in a diluted bleach solution of 2 teaspoons of bleach per 1 gallon of water. Soak for 2 minutes, then air dry.*
For Bed & Bath Linens: It is recommended to use bleach and dry on the highest heat setting allowed by the manufacturer. For Sevenfold Bed and Bath Linens, we recommend non-chlorine bleach on our white linens and no higher than a medium heat setting. There are color-safe bleach options as well, or you can also use vinegar solutions to disinfect and brighten your colors.
For Furniture: For both cloth and leather furniture, vinegar solutions are the best way to disinfect. Vinegar can often be used in a 1:1 ratio. However, we always recommend checking your manufacturer’s cleaning instructions for the best practices. If cleaning/disinfecting leather, always remember to treat/condition it after cleaning.
How many linens should I have in my rental home? The easy answer is 3x the number needed for one set. This is called a 3-Par. The “Par” or “Par level” is the number of linens you have for each room. For example, on a king bed with 4 king pillows, you would want 3 fitted sheets, 3 flat sheets, 12 pillowcases. If you have comforters, consider adding duvet covers and/or having an additional comforter per room to switch out. For bathrooms, if one “set” is 2 bath towels, 1 hand towel, and 4 rolled face towels, your total of linens would be 6 bath towels, 3 hand towels, and 12 rolled face towels.
Many hotels carry a minimum of 3-par and we encourage homeowners to do the same. Having 3-par allows one in use, one in the wash, and one in the closet. Other common par levels are 4 or 5. For post COVID-19, we’d recommend keeping a 3 par for most rental homes. However, if you are in a high-traffic area or have back-to-back listings often, we would recommend increasing to 4.
In addition to your linens, you may want to consider stocking up on cleaning supplies for your guests. AirBnB noted that guests are looking for rentals with various amenities, including cleaning supplies. You can see their list here. By providing cleaning supplies such as disinfecting wipes, hand sanitizer, anti-bacterial hand soap, and more, you make you guests feel valued.
With local travel being popular, that doesn’t mean you won’t get out-of-town guests. Many rental home companies (i.e. AirBnb, Vacasa, etc) have recommended that travelers keep up-to-date with the destination’s preventative measures and travel restrictions. For example, some areas required a quarantine for either 14-days or the duration of their stay if under 14-days. Other areas have mandatory face mask orders. You can be a helpful host by sharing the local restrictions, if any, or providing links to the sites where they can find that information.
In addition to helping inform your guests, you could offer recommendations on local restaurants that are open for dine-in and takeout. As many business are still working on re-opening or have shifted to a take-out only menu, you can offer some assistance by providing a list of places in the area that are open! You could also consider offering recommendations for outdoor activities or local parks or hiking trails that may be open. If you know there are still many areas closed to visitors, some hosts have indoor activities provided such as board games, streaming services (Netflix/Hulu/Etc), books/magazines, and other similar features.
How Sevenfold Partners with Rental Hosts
Sevenfold has been working with boutique hotels and spas for over 23 years. Our bed and bath linens are designed to withstand the busy hustle of the hospitality industry. Those same linens are available to you! As a short-term rental host, you have the ability to become a Wholesale Customer with us. Whether you have multiple listings or just one listing, we have an ordering program that will work for you!
In addition to our standard catalog, which includes Twin to Cal King sized bed linens, Towels from Face Towel to Bath Sheet size, easy-to-wash Bath Mats, Robes, and Slippers, we also carry Down and Down-Alternative products. We can offer customized products, as well! To learn more and get one step closer to meeting your rental home needs, fill out our Wholesale Customer Inquiry. Sevenfold is dedicated to bringing you the high-quality linens you want at a price you will love!
*Please note: This method is not recommended for non-stainless steel, aluminum, silver, or chipped enamel products. By completing the initial wash and rinse, you can prevent food particles from affecting the concentration of the solution.