Investing in a vacation rental is no small expense, and you want to make sure you get your money's worth from the property. As such, you aim to keep the place in tip-top shape for as long as you can. There's one big factor working against you, whether you've bought a beachfront abode, mountain house or city apartment. The sun can brighten the space until the furniture starts to fade.
It may seem as though you can't do anything to stop this from happening — the sun's not going to stop shining. However, you can take steps to keep its rays at bay or otherwise protect your wares from them. Here are five of the best fade-prevention tips:
The best way to prevent fading from the sun is by keeping excess light out of your property. One of the simplest ways to do so is by adding curtains and/or blinds to your rental. They won't be foolproof, of course — perhaps your guests will leave them open to enjoy the scenery around the property. However, you can at least ask that guests close all blinds and curtains when they leave to keep the place shady.
Perhaps your guests' potentially inconsistent curtains usage isn't enough of a guarantee for you. In this case, grab a UV-blocking window cling from your local hardware store. The initial cost is low and the installation doesn't require much expertise, either. So long as you buy a high-quality brand of film, you'll have solid protection from the sun's rays. Specifically, seek out a cling film that touts a 99.9 percent ray-blocking rate so you know your property's safer from fading — even without curtains or blinds.
You can take things even further by installing a solar screen outside of your vacation property. These motorized and retractable additions will make a huge difference at your rental property, and not just because they'll block fading UV rays. Retractable screens can keep your rental much cooler, saving on air-conditioning costs when it's spring or summer. Plus, they look great on the exterior of your home, and guests will love the luxury of remote-controlled shade.
It might be the biggest investment we suggest on this list, but new windows can also fight against faded furniture. Newer versions of your current panes can block out about 85 percent of the sun's damaging rays. Plus, like solar screens, windows help you to run a more energy-efficient household. The latter might be even more effective in the long run, though, as they keep both heat and cool air inside — no more energy-depleting drafts.
Not all of your fade-fighting options have to do with blocking the sun at its source. You can keep furniture fresher for longer by moving it around so that the same parts aren't always in direct sunlight. It may sound daunting to have to rearrange the living room every few months, but it can be fun — get creative with layouts and see what your guests like.
Make sure that your regular rotations include that of any area rugs, especially those that cover your hardwood floors. Of course, the tapestries can easily get faded in the sun. However, if they stay in the same place for too long, then the planks beneath them will remain their original color. Meanwhile, the floor in the sun will start to fade. You don't want to have to refinish your hardwoods anytime soon, so make routine rug and furniture rotations part of your rental maintenance.
The sunshine might be a selling point for your vacation rental, but it's doing nothing to keep your property in its best shape. So, follow any one of the above tips to preserve your property — and keep it colorful — for many years to come.
Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Guides for Brides, Hotel Online and more!