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Ask the Experts: What type of garden furniture do you recommend for our holiday cottage?

Ask the experts…

Q. What do we need to think about for the garden of our holiday home and do you have any recommendations of the type of furniture or equipment we should provide?

A. The Helpful Holidays team say:

The garden of a holiday home often provides the first impression for guests, so it’s especially important that it looks inviting and welcoming. In between lets, you need to ensure that the grass is tidy and flower beds weeded, exterior paintwork is fresh, steps and paths aren’t slippery, gates open and close easily and that fences are secure and debris is removed. Handrails beside flights of more than two steps are recommended. Garden tools should be removed or securely locked away during bookings.

There should be a table with sufficient chairs for the number your holiday home accommodates. Choose good quality furniture to withstand wear and tear; we recommend wood, although aluminium can also be durable and may suit a little courtyard or patio best. A parasol or sunshade and perhaps a couple of loungers is an attractive touch.

A barbecue is appealing to holidaymakers, unless your cottage has a thatched roof and the fire risk worries you; gas barbecues are popular and easier to clean than traditional ones.

Play equipment is appreciated, but it must always be well maintained and you should inform your insurers. A trampoline with a safety net, for instance, would be a relatively cheap and appreciated addition if your garden is large and flat enough. A cupboard stocked with croquet or badminton sets, balls and other outdoor games is appreciated by the young and young at heart.