How to Set up a Cozy Guest Room on a Budget

Posted by Lyndsay Romeo on

Wondering how to set up a cozy guest room on a budget? Check out our super-easy and budget-friendly tips to make your guests’ stay enjoyable.

Love playing a host? Then, what better way to welcome out-of-town friends and family into your home than by showing them a perfect guest oasis where they can rest their travel-weary heads after a long day. Plus, if you’ve had your fair share of stays that included squeaky beds, lack of closet storage, and pancake pillows, followed by a lot of back pain, sleepless nights, and days fueled by crazy amounts of caffeine and ibuprofen, then you know the importance of a well-appointed guest room. Fortunately, you don’t have to break the bank to set one up. We’re breaking down how you can set up a cozy guest room on a budget.

Create a Restful Space with Your Tonal Palette

Begin by adding a new coat of paint. Not only is it the easiest and most budget-friendly way to update a room, but it will also ground all your other design and décor choices (not knowing where to start’s the worst, isn’t it?).

Purposefully choosing your colors is the most important thing at this point. You want to give your guests a great night of sleep, and a cozy, dark, moody vibe is a surefire way to do it. You might be a bit reluctant about going bold with your paint choice, but make no mistake: there isn’t a more fitting room in your house for experimenting with a dark tonal palette than the bedroom.

And, if you like the idea, that whole tone-on-tone look is HUGE right now. Not everything has to be the same shade, of course. Playing with tones helps you achieve that subdued, quiet, straight-up dreamy vibe while still keeping things interesting and visually layered. Think, for instance, dark walls combined with dark navy-blue headboard, denim blue, and cobalt sheets, blue-ish gray curtains, etc.

Pick a color, and sprinkle its hues around the room.

Dress Up the Bed

A good night’s sleep is central to ensuring the most enjoyable and memorable stay for your guests. So, although you can find one on a budget, you should still make sure not to skimp when it comes to picking out the right bed for your guest room. Avoid uncomfortable mattresses, old, ratty, hand-me-down linens, and pillows from your bedroom of years past.

Finally, a few things can transform a bed quite like throw pillows and blankets. If you want to set up a cozy guest room that won’t cost you a fortune, this is THE hack. Just add a few chic decorative pillows and a plush throw blanket to the mix to make everything go from comfy to utterly cozy in a second.

Add Furniture

Designing a perfectly cozy room for your guests requires more than just a bed. So, if you have space, consider adding a small nightstand so your guests have somewhere to place their books, glasses, drinks, and knick-knacks near the bed. Another necessity is storage. Therefore, make sure to count in a small chest or dresser with available drawer space for your visitors.

A nightstand is a must-have in any bedroom.

Next, if your budget allows, you can throw in a bench at the foot of the bed, a couple of stools, or a comfy armchair. It will give the room a finished look and a place for your guests to retreat and use the space for more than just sleeping (everyone needs some alone time, right?).

These are usually available at all price points. Still, you can always look for sales and try to get the best deals possible. And, of course, be careful when moving bulky pieces of furniture, like that chest or a dresser. If you are moving it yourself, make sure you’ve learned the proper ways to do it beforehand. Otherwise, you could damage the object or, even worse, injure yourself.

Add Some Homey Items

What better way to make your guests feel at home than ensuring their room has all of the home essentials? We’re talking basic creature comforts and niceties like:

  • a basket with toiletries
  • Kleenex
  • carafe and glasses for water
  • slippers
  • towels
  • bathrobes
  • a pen and pad of paper

Each of these items is something you can “borrow” from another room in your home for temporary use in your guest room. In other words, this won’t cost you a dime.

Shop for décor pieces

If you’ve ever shopped for décor pieces before, you know exactly how pricey they can be. And, in the twinkling of an eye, that budget you so carefully devised is completely shot, all thanks to those little decorative touches. If you want to set up a beautiful and inviting room for your guests on a budget, you’re in luck. You are actually supposed to keep things simple, decluttered, and tasteful rather than decorate with a busy theme and cover every square inch with your personal taste.

You can still decorate your setup according to your style – after all, it’s your home; only make sure to keep the lid on the self-expression and artfully accessorize. Carefully choose the pieces you want to purchase. Pick out a few stylish ones to elevate the design you’ve carefully put your thought into, and sprinkle them here and there. Finally, look in second-hand stores for as-good-as-new items for a fraction of the cost if you’re trying to stay within your budget limits.

Hang Non-Custom Curtains

Investing in exorbitant draperies isn’t at all necessary. Your guests can just as easily enjoy those simple luxuries such as light regulation, privacy, and sound dampening with pre-made drapery panels available online or on the shelves. These are a fantastic way of setting up a cozy ambiance without the cost of custom-made window treatments. Up for an expert tip? Consider putting up two panels on either side to create a luxurious fullness.

Infuse the Room with a Subtle Scent

You want your guest room smelling fresh and clean, of course. But you can't go wrong with gentle fragrances of a natural aroma, either. How a bedroom smells can significantly influence the power of a good night's sleep, as well as the tranquility of your living quarters. You can do this with a scented candle, a room spray, or a reed diffuser. As for your finishing touch, treat the guestroom to a fresh, artfully-arranged, gorgeous-looking, divine-smelling bouquet. Think roses, magnolia, or lily of the valley. These never fail to raise the spirits.

Add fresh, natural scents using fragrant plants or make your own air freshener.

Create an Ambiance with Lighting

If you're trying to set up a cozy guest room, there's no better way to create a vibe than layering lighting. Simply leaving the bedside light on for when your guests arrive would make an impactful impression. It's a simple – and inexpensive – way to make your visitors feel welcome and super cozy!


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