When you have your own place that comes with two bathrooms and a guest bedroom, you immediately want to dress it up, put some people in there and make them feel at home. Okay, so you don’t really need more than just your own place to want to make guests feel comfortable and at home.
There are a few things you can do to make sure you’re the perfect host for any and all home-guest occasions. Be it a party, dinner with the in-laws, a sleepover or a catch up over a cup of coffee outside on the patio, these are all opportunities to whip out your hosting skills and show everyone a good time.
Cleanliness is key
You won’t be making it easy for anyone to feel comfortable in your home if it’s a mess or dirty. Dusty floors, funny smells, wet towels in the bathrooms, laundry on display and having things lying everywhere will only make your guest feel like you forgot or didn’t care that they were coming.
If you’re going to be hosting a party, it’s understandable that at the end of the night you might just clear a few things before cleaning up in the morning. But you cant have guests arrive and think the party’s over already.
Make time the morning or the day before and give the whole house a sweep, mop, vacuum, dusting, folding, organising, scrub and disinfecting before anyone knocks on the door.
Be prepared on their behalf
Now if you have people staying over for a couple of days, or even for a night, you will be the perfect host if you can be prepared on their behalf. Gowns and slippers not included, otherwise, you’d have to stock every size, but smaller things like toiletries are always appreciated.
For those spontaneous sleepovers, your guest will need a toothbrush and some shower essentials, which is definitely something you can offer them. Not every guest will forget their toothbrush, so if you buy two or three you’ll be covering your bases. And there are various miniature shampoos, conditioners and body wash that you can stock in the guest bathroom.
lways have clean towels nicely folded on the beautifully-made bed your guest will be sleeping in (it will save them from having to ask). And from the word go, let them know what is provided and ask if there is anything else you can organise for them.
Keep it flowing
When throwing a house or dinner party, you need to keep the good vibes going and flowing throughout the duration of the party.
- Conversation: No one enjoys awkward silences. Silence is only acceptable when a good song is playing or everyone is eating and enjoying their meal. Keep the conversation and interaction going. Bring out the board games if you need to and find activities where everyone can get involved. If it’s a large party, make sure you talk to everyone and, as a general rule of thumb, don’t do all the talking. Your guests need to join in the conversation as well.
- Drinks: An empty cup is unacceptable, unless your guest has had enough. Not everyone is comfortable enough to open your fridge and pour themselves another drink. Put the drinks on the table in an ice bucket or be sure to offer another when you see the liquid levels are running low for some people. They will most definitely appreciate it.
- Snacks: Parties are great when there are snacks to nibble on while the fire is being lit or the main course is still a few hours away. The problem with snacks is that they don’t last very long and soon you have no more snacks and a hungry crowd. Try plating small helpings of snacks at a time. That will force guests to share and eat slowly to make them last. Then, when those are done, sneakily refill the bowls and platters with the rest of the snacks and you’ll have happy guests.
- Music: A great evening is always accompanied by music. Even if it’s just a soft acoustic playlist in the background. Making use of a Bluetooth soundbar will be the best way to control the music without getting up every five minutes to change the volume, skip a song or restart the playlist because you can do it from your phone. This way you won’t have to interrupt a conversation with your guests.
Know your guests
When you’re going to be catering for people, you need to know about any allergies or dietary preferences. It saves awkward moments of “Um, actually I can’t eat that” as you place your meal in front of your guest and it makes them feel cared for because you’re paying attention to their preferences.
You also need to know them on a different level. Like, how they are with kids and animals or how they feel about smoking, for example. Having your kids and dogs running around the house may be second nature for you, but it may seriously stress out the guests in your home. Make sure the whole family shows qualities of hospitality while the guests are there and if it’s necessary to keep the pets in the back for a few days, then make sure that is taken care of as well.
Hand over the reigns
At some point, your guests will be comfortable with you and your home and you will be able to hand over the reigns of “host” to them. Let them make their own coffee in the morning, show them where the washing machine is and, finally, you can relax a little.