How to Stand Out in a Busy Market Place.

February 2020

In a competitive marketplace, how can you make your holiday property stand out from the crowd? Having worked in the property market for over twenty years, Hannah Cooper, property recruitment manager for Suffolk Secrets, shares her secrets to success.

It’s no secret that in recent years, the popularity of the Suffolk staycation has soared. Not only are more holiday makers heading to Suffolk for their weekend break or annual holiday than ever before, but there’s never been more holiday properties, and of a higher quality, to choose from, either.

The question for savvy investors then, is: ‘how do you ensure that your holiday let captures – and holds - customer attention?’ Knowing the answer could make the difference between potential holiday makers scrolling past or pressing the ‘book now’ button.


Styling your property

If there’s a winning formula for successful styling, then this is it: ‘Make it memorable.’ Whilst there’s a balance to be struck between ensuring your property has broad appeal, so it ticks the wish list for as wide a demographic as possible, it’s important not to go too generic.

There is such a thing as beige (and, in recent years, grey) boredom. 

Some of the most successful properties in the Suffolk Secrets and Suffolk Cottage Holidays portfolios are when holiday home owners have deviated from the norm to create visually inspiring properties with the ‘wow’ factor: think copper baths and lighting, inflatable conservatories, cinema or games rooms, a property styled with 1950’s fixtures and décor and not a white tile or brown leather sofa in sight.

Candler's Lane
Candler's Lane, Harleston: From the outside, there’s little to distinguish this Victorian brick cottage from its neighbours. Inside, though, and you’re transported to an eclectically furnished, colourful and quirky holiday property complete with stain class windows, velvet sofas and carefully curated antiques. The epitome of what it means to ‘stand out from the crowd'.

However, it’s obvious that the owners have had both the budget to be able to indulge in the latest and most eye-catching design and the bravery to make their property truly unique. 

Still, there are ways that every holiday homeowner can add pops of colour, injections of style and furnishings with class without blowing the budget. Including some eye-catching soft furnishings, such as cushions, rugs, or throws is an easy and budget-friendly way to instantly upgrade any interior – easy to refresh on a regular or seasonal basis, too. 

White Sailes
White Sails, Aldeburgh. This owner hasn’t broken the bank with this renovation but has created a bright and nautically inspired interior that’s classy, not kitsch’.

Preparation, preparation, preparation

If ‘location, location, location’ is the key phrase to inform where to purchase your holiday let, then ‘preparation, preparation, preparation’ is the mandate for making sure your holiday let is photography ready.

Once you’ve styled your property, the next crucial key to success is window dressing; making sure your holiday homes is as welcoming as possible for the camera. Think of yourself as an upmarket estate agent, to ensure that your property is shown off to its best potential, even if you don’t do all of the preparations when you soon welcome your home to its first guests. 

Silver Shore
Silver Shore, Southwold. The ‘bee cushion’ and poster are clever additions to the soft muted colours, giving a memorable hook for potential bookers searching online.

If your home has fireplaces or wood burning stoves, light them, maybe with a few logs or tealights in the hearth, or fairy lights draped across the mantlepiece. Dress the tables as you would at a dinner party with candles, cutlery, crockery, glassware and napkins; put fresh flowers in vases throughout the house, perhaps in a main bedroom or on a dresser. Add any touch that makes your property looked its been lived in and guest-ready, so those beds need to be immaculate, perhaps with neatly folded towels on them, books by bedside tables, magazines and games on display in other rooms to appeal when out of season. 

If you want to stand out from the crowd, then treat your photography or photographer as you would a VIP guest.

Inspirational imagery 

It’s a truism that first impressions count, so why gamble with what is the most effective selling tool of all: photography. 

If you’ve ever come across a property in a brochure or website where there’s a yellow hue throughout or seen the interior of a house where the view from the window is either obscured or worse, lit with a clearly visible flash and ‘ or photographer, then you’ll know how off-putting these common photography faux pas are. 

As part of the Original Cottages family, Suffolk Secrets and Suffolk Cottage Holidays have a fully trained team of in-house photographers who know what works. By utilising the latest in HDR (high dynamic range) photography, a technique which simultaneously utilises five different exposures, not only eliminates common photography problems, but ensures your property is shown to its best potential. 

If you’d like targeted, tailored advice about how we can help let your holiday home, do get in touch. Myself and my team would love to hear from you!

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