Southbound Stays Improvements

You’ve seen our polls asking for input, our construction updates & even pictures of one of our homes debuting its little makeover. However, you may be wondering exactly what we’re up to (and why) with all these changes.

When we purchased our first short term rental home everything about it started out as a hobby: hosting, design, DIY projects. We put a lot of thought and intention into setting up the space but there were simply things we did not know. Over time from our experiences and from guest feedback, we’ve redesigned our spaces (a few times – ha), added amenities and made continued, small improvements.

We do this across all our homes however, this especially pertained to the first few spaces we setup: Country Cottage, Little House & The Nashville Nest. With these spaces, it was getting to the point that some things were beyond what good design and amenities could account for and we were limited as to what more we could do. For instance, having only 1 small closet, 1 bathroom and no dishwasher at The Country Cottage. Over at the Nest, it had just been remodeled by the prior owners before we bought but the floors, kitchen and finishes were never really our style.  

Add to that, we never knew this little hosting hobby would grow to what it was and that we would end up with multiple homes. Since they were all purchased and setup at different times in our journey, the finishes and furnishing levels were a bit inconsistent. We now have so many repeat guests staying with us across all our different spaces that we want to make sure that the experience across the board feels as close to consistent as possible. Here’s how we plan to make that happen:

At the studios: We have 3 studios in the same complex in the Melrose neighborhood of Nashville. In full transparency, the complex building the studios are in is from the 1950s and well, they’re 440 sq ft so there are always going to be limitations we just must work within. The studios have always been affordable and accessible accommodations for our guests, and we plan to keep it that way even though we are now elevating the experience(s) there. The timeline for the studios is:

  • Vibe studio has already undergone renovations in October 2020
  • The Nashville Nest is well underway in its renovation. The studio will be ready to welcome guests again in May
  • We’ll be looking at plans for Lonestar later this year or next year, but no set plans are in place at this point

At our houses: Lyric, our home in Leiper’s Fork has always been setup as a more of a luxe property due to its size and location. Our goal is to bring this level of comfort and experience to all of houses. The timeline for the houses is:

  • The Little House has already had its upgrades in March of this year- check out the link online for updated photos.
  • Country Cottage will undergo the biggest renovation of all our properties. The home will turn 100 years old in just 2 years. This started with plans to reinforce the structure, level the floors, make sure the doors all lock, etc. However, as we get deeper into conversations with the contractor, we decided to use it as an opportunity to make significant changes to the function of the home as well. This will include enlarging the back bedroom to make a huge primary suite and the addition on an en suite bathroom, updating and enlarging the existing bathroom, adding closet space, opening the kitchen and dining areas (which also means a whole new kitchen, the addition of a dishwasher and upgraded appliances) and last but not least, there will now be an enclosed sunroom where the back deck is today. Construction begins in June and we anticipate welcoming guests back in early October. 

A bonus of all the change is that we get to redesign these spaces literally from the ground up this time and interject our style even more: a bit of vintage, a bit of quirk, pops of color. In the end our goal is to offer elevated, functional, and comfortable spaces that reflect the community we are in.

Growing our portfolio: as I said earlier, we never imagined out hosting journey would lead us here and we never want to get too big for our britches (had to use that analogy because my Nanny used to always say that)!  We do, however plan to grow just a little in the coming year or two. In all, we are looking to 2-3 more properties over time but we do not plan to grow larger than that. Here’s how we’re looking to do that:

  • We are looking to add a “non- tiny tiny house” to our offerings (ie it will be setup like a tiny house but most likely be more like 1,000-1,200 square feet). The location is yet to be determined thanks to this crazy market but we’re actively on the hunt for something in the Middle Tennessee region.
  • Sunshine state here we come! We are both originally from Florida and our families are still there. We are hoping to find a home near our hometown on the beach that we can offer to guests later this year or next (again, depending on this crazy market).

Well, folks, that is what is up with your hosts and our spaces – and all of those “A” or “B” polls we’ve been posting. We would love to hear your feedback (ie we are always open to suggestions) and answer any questions so as always, do not hesitate to reach out to us.

The McCreas

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