I’ve been fortunate to be a guest to many, whether it be visiting out of town family or staying with a friend in a nearby city, and I’m always so grateful when someone opens their home to me. As a guest I often fear I might be putting my host or their family out. Luckily I’ve never actually felt that way as all my hosts have been amazingly accommodating. As a host, I am usually hosting family and they always express how at home they feel, which is exactly how I want it as they enter my own personal chaos! That being said, I’d like to share a few tips to help your guest feel like part of the family, whether it be an overnight visit or a week-long stay.
- Know how long your house guests will be staying with you. Make sure you or someone in your household will be available during their stay. If you cannot be around at all times, have a vehicle available for your guest to use or arrange for someone to take them out.
- Have a well stocked fridge and pantry! Find out what your guests do or don’t like. Have some easy-to-prepare breakfast and lunch staples on hand so you or your guest can whip something up in a hurry.
- If you don’t already, make sure to have a room prepared in anticipation of their arrival. If there’s a washroom that could be allocated to them alone that’s a bonus for both of you! Your guests will feel truly welcome in your home.
- Give your guests the full tour! Let them know what they can help themselves to; the more familiar they are, the more comfortable they’ll be.
- Fresh linens on the bed and lots of fresh towels available are a must! If your guest is staying for more than a few days, empty a drawer or two in the dresser. This will allow them to unpack their suitcase and settle in.
- Some bottled water on the night table and an alarm clock are two important necessities.
- In the bathroom, be sure to keep some extra amenities available. Fill a basket with new toothbrushes, toothpaste, body wash, shampoo and conditioner and leave it out on the bathroom counter for easy access.
- Have a plan – it doesn’t have to be a fixed plan, but put together some sort of schedule to share with your guests. Whether it be a day seeing the sights, or a night on the town, it’s nice to show your guests you want them to have a great time. If they prefer to hang out with you at home they’ll tell you and you can plan accordingly. There is nothing more comforting than dinner in and games night with the family!
The bottom line is be yourself and don’t strive for perfection. If someone feels you”re working extra hard to please them, they might feel guilty and a little out of sorts. People are much more at ease if your home is still running as it usually would on a normal day. Treat your guests like family; your home is their home!
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