Treat Your House Guests Properly....Expert Commentary

Having houseguests for a overnight is a wonderful way to catch up with friends in the relaxed atmosphere of your own home.  Being organized is key to having a successful houseguest visit.

The best way to be certain that your guest room will satisfy your guest is to give it a test run by sleeping in it yourself.  You'll quickly discover if the radiator pounds incessantly or a loose shutter bangs in the wind.  Before the guests arrive, see that the room is aired out, that there's an empty drawer or two and that the bed has clean, fresh sheets.

A checklist for the perfect guest room is:

Alarm clock

Few carefully chosen books

Recent magazines

Pencil and pad of paper

Sewing kit

Thermos or pitcher of water

Radio and/or TV

Vase with fresh flowers

Extra pillow and blankets

Bowl of fresh fruit




The guest bathroom should also be stocked with such essentials such as; towels, soaps, lotions, shampoo and conditioner, glasses, toothbrush and toothpaste, comb, blow dryer, hair spray, razors, tissue, aspirin, band-aids, sanitary napkins, toilet paper, room deodorant and don't forget toothpicks are also personal hygiene and should only be used in the bathroom.

It is the host's responsibility to have activities arranged such as tennis, golf, movies, etc.  Although, for some friends a quiet, restful weekend will be preferred to a more socially active one.

The next step is preparing the meals for your family and your houseguests.  Houseguests are usually divided between those who like a 6 a.m. jog on a weekend and those who like to luxuriate in bed until nine o'clock or later.  As the host, you should not attempt to legislate the breakfast hour for your guests but rather tell them they are welcome to fix their own breakfast whenever they get up.  The night before, you can show the early risers where the dishes, glasses, flatware, coffee, cereal and other things they will need for breakfast are.  It's also a good idea to prepare ahead of time some muffins or bagels to have sitting out for your guests.

Some other great tips to know before having  a houseguest over are:

  • Ÿ If you're asking friend over for Labor Day or some other holiday weekend, be sure to ask them well in advance, so there's a better chance they'll be able to accept.
  • Ÿ Think twice before asking someone you don't know well or aren't particularly fond of to spend the weekend. Two days with anyone who bores you or who needs constant entertaining can seem like forever.
  • Ÿ Tell your guests just when you expect them to arrive and leave. Send them plane, train, or bus schedules, or, if they are driving, a road map and directions. Also, let them know if you will meet them somewhere or how to get to your home.
  • Ÿ Be specific about clothing. Don't leave it to your guests to figure out what to bring. Tell them exactly what the dress code for the weekend is. A houseguest will feel terribly out of place if he or she is dressed differently from everyone else.
  • Ÿ If you are inviting friends for the first time, ask them if they have any special dietary needs and what they usually have for breakfast.
  • Ÿ If you don't allow smoking in your house, be sure to tell this to smokers when you do the inviting.
  • Ÿ If you have extra sporting equipment, such as tennis rackets or golf clubs, tell you guests so they have the option of bringing or not bringing their own.