Posted in: Homeowner tips

How to prepare your home for holiday guests

How to prepare your home for holiday guests

Key insights:

  • When hosting holiday house guests, go beyond their basic needs to offer maximum comfort in their sleeping spaces and bathroom accommodations.
  • In charge of a feast for 12? Be sure to mark anything that's off-limits in the refrigerator to ensure your eggnog doesn't go missing before the big meal.
  • If you're hosting the next generation, the holidays are a great time to dig out old games and toys.

'Tis the season for house guests! Whether you've been living in the same home for many years or have recently purchased a new property and it’s your first time hosting holiday guests, follow these tips to ensure your overnight visitors feel warm and welcome in your home over the holidays.

The sleeping spaces

Whether your guests have a bed or will be relegated to a space on the floor, provide an assortment of blankets and pillows to ensure maximum comfort. While many people now use their cell phones as their alarm, you can also provide an easily programmable travel alarm clock on a small side table. Last, put out a small tray or bowl where guests can store their wallet, keys and other personal items.

If you want to go the extra mile to make your guests feel special, consider adding a welcome basket to each room. This assortment could include some or all of the following:

  • Mints or candy canes
  • Chocolates
  • Water bottles
  • Phone chargers
  • Earplugs
  • Linen spray

The bathing basics

Be sure to show guests which bathroom they should use during their stay, along with how to operate any complicated bathroom appliances (a tricky shower nozzle or a special heated floor system). At this time, you may also let guests know about hair dryers, towel warmers or other gadgets that they can use.

On the counter, provide easily forgotten essentials like shampoo, deodorant, toothbrushes and toothpaste. And, if the bathroom isn't connected to your guests' sleeping space, consider lighting the hallway with a nightlight.

Traveling and eating rich foods can take their toll, so consider offering some or all of the following as well:

  • Pain medication
  • Antacids
  • Melatonin or other sleep aids
  • Bandages
  • Moisturizers and lip care
  • A nail file and clipper

The fridge factor

Most houseguests won't touch the cupboards or refrigerator without asking. Still, you should be sure to label anything that's “off-limits” – lest you end up with Aunt Franny drinking all the eggnog before the party starts!

Conversely, try to have a few easy-to-access snacks on hand to tide your guests over as you prepare for the big holiday meal. Some quick and simple snacks are:

  • Vegetables and hummus
  • Crackers and cheese
  • Fruit
  • Olives
  • Holiday cookies
  • Nut mix

It's all relative

You know your guests and relatives better than anyone, so take them into account as you prepare your home. If your sister is a coffee drinker, be sure you can offer her some in the morning, taking into consideration how she likes it (with extra cream and sugar!). If your cousin is bringing their three children, set out your own kids' long-forgotten favorite toys and books to occupy them. These thoughtful additions can make all the difference and create a pleasant atmosphere for everyone.

A hygge house

Hygge is the Danish lifestyle of warmth, coziness and simplicity. This holiday season is the perfect time to embrace hygge. To fully encapsulate a house full of hygge, consider the following:

  • Baking a family recipe and letting the aroma fill the house
  • Enjoying the golden glow of the fireplace or decorative lanterns
  • Watching a movie or playing board games as a family, without cellphones
  • Cozying up in knit blankets or sweaters

A house full of hygge is bound to elicit positive interactions and memorable moments. After all, who isn’t happy wrapped up in a blanket with a mug of hot cocoa?

Above all, enjoy the holidays

Holiday house guests come but once a year. By being proactive, you can ensure their visit is pleasant, not stressful.

Hoping to upgrade your space so you can host next year’s holiday festivities? Reach out to Edina Realty or one of our agents today.

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