If you’ve got a spare room going to waste and you wouldn’t mind having paying guests in your home, why not run a little B&B business? Here are 8 top tips to get you started.

Forget the doilies, nets and crinoline lamps of yesteryear. The B&B is enjoying a renaissance in 2015, thanks to a combination of soaring staycation figures, the popularity of hit TV show ‘Four in a Bed’ and the rise of Airbnb. 

[Related story: What is Airbnb? 12 questions answered on the world’s fastest-growing holiday website]

If you’re an aspiring B&B-er but you don’t quite know how to get your spare room ready for paying guests, eBay has teamed up with 5-star Scottish B&B Ayrs and Graces owner Rhona Meehan to help get you started.

Rhona, who has worked in hospitality for 30 years, says: “It‘s the little things that make people feel pampered and at home during their stay and leads to them returning time and time again.

‘Set boundaries for your guests’

“When people stay at Ayrs and Graces we treat them as an extension of our own family, but the sense of British reserve means it’s still important to set boundaries for guests when you show them round so there aren’t awkward moments in the corridor later on.

Start your own bed and breakfast

“Whether you’re asking them to take special care with period furniture in their bedroom, showing them which bathroom is theirs to use if you don’t have an en-suite, marking family areas private, telling them what time you’d like them to keep the noise down after or where they need to come for breakfast and at what time, there is a certain etiquette to running a B&B and being a guest.”

8 ways to get your spare room B&B-ready

  1. Have an up-to-date list or inventory so you can replace linen and towels regularly
  2. Give guests cold drinks and nibbles on arrival
  3. Invest in quality glassware and crockery (Rhona loves Waterford Crystal and Denby). Always hand-wash glasses as they will look their best for much longer
  4. Create pleasant ambience with scented candles
  5. The bathroom must have a plentiful stock of quality toiletries. Rhona’s top pick is Molton Brown hand wash and hand cream
  6. Make sure bedrooms have quality white linens. High thread count sheets, fluffy towels and robes are the way forward
  7. Invest in a decent iron. Rhona uses a Tefal Aquaspeed iron which saves time when you have a lot of laundry
  8. Good knives, a large toaster, and quality non-stick pans are all necessary to ensure breakfast can be kicked off without a glitch.  When it comes to cookware, Rhona opts for solid products due to their longevity 

Would you open up your home to paying guests? Tell us in the Comments below.