Preparing your holiday home for high season

The high season is when you’re likely to get the greatest return on your holiday home investment, and diligent preparation is key to ensuring that your busiest booking period goes smoothly. Follow these tips to make sure your holiday home is ship shape before the busiest time of the year gets underway.

Maintenance
The run-up to high season is the time to get any routine maintenance done on your holiday property, as the extra use your property will get during this intense period may exacerbate any existing issues. Check that electrical appliances are all in good working order, and go from room to room keeping an eye out for things like:

● Low batteries on smoke or carbon monoxide alarms
● Dripping taps and blocked drains
● Blown lightbulbs
● Stained carpets, dirty floors and marks on walls
● Peeling paint or bathroom grouting

Some of these repairs are easily carried out yourself, but others may require a professional to do the job for you, so make sure you allow enough time for this to be done before your bookings take off for the summer.

Summer essentials
With the maintenance taken care of, think about equipping your holiday home with the essentials your guests will need for summer. Inside, make sure they can keep cool by testing the air conditioning and getting it serviced if necessary. If your property doesn’t have air conditioning, invest in some freestanding fans for each room. If flies or mosquitoes are likely to be a problem, you may also want to equip your property with some fly traps.

Outside, make sure your guests have everything they need for outdoor living – think barbecue, patio furniture, and maybe even some fun garden games, such as giant Jenga or chess, badminton racquets and shuttlecocks, or lawn bowls. Ensure the garden is tidy, patio slabs are even and unruly shrubs are pruned back. If you have a swimming pool, get it cleaned and test the heating before opening it for summer.

Make sure the local information you leave for your guests is up-to-date with summer activities and this year’s events, and plan how you’re going to adapt your welcome hamper for summer visitors (for example, a bottle of lemonade or Prosecco to replace winter mulled wine).

High season for ski properties
For ski properties, high season falls not in the warm summer months, but in the depths of winter. That means that getting ready for high season will be a different process, and one that starts with ensuring that the heating is in good working order. Get the boiler serviced if you have central heating, and the chimney swept if there’s a log fire; order oil for the central heating if necessary, or more logs for the fire. Ensure you have some electric heaters on emergency standby in case anything happens to the boiler over the winter.

Make sure your home is equipped for cosy après-ski evenings, with winter essentials such as blankets, thick winter duvets and hot water bottles. For the finishing touch, leave some board games, DVDs and an iPod dock so guests can enjoy some quality family time after a day on the slopes.

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