9 Ways to Be a Good Host

Are you a social butterfly that enjoys entertaining people at home?

I always follow a set of rules to make my guests’ stay as comfortable as possible, especially if they’re staying over night. Below are nine ways to be a good host to your friends and family.

botanical interior style bedroom idea home uk blog essex

orange accent cushions pattern design for sofa citrus yellow

I shot all of the photos featured above at the House of Fraser home press event

1. Tidy up

This one is a given. Clean the place up and make the place all comfortable and cosy. Although you don’t need it spotless, it’s nice to have a tidy space. Nobody likes to see other people’s grime (let alone their own) or climb over dirty underwear that’s been lying around for weeks (I never do this by the way – yuk!) so do grab the hoover and do our washing before the guests arrive.

Top Tip: Add some lovely fresh flowers. It’ll make the place smell great and look beautiful too.

2. Stock up

Food and toilet paper are the two main things I recon that you’ll need to stock up on. Firstly, check your fridge and make sure there’s enough food to last the duration of your guests’ stay, think about breakfast options and snacks too. Toilet roll is an obvious one. It’s super embarrassing, for both the host and the guest, if you run out of paper midway through their stay…

3. Check your guests’ needs

Every guest is different! Be sure to ask your guest if they have an allergy or if they are vegetarian or have other dietary requirements. You might even want to check if they have hay fever so that if they do, don’t buy fresh flowers!

If it’s a grandparent or another elderly relative make them feel as comfortable as possible, offering good seating areas and facilities that don’t require stairs if possible. In the end, just try and be accommodating to their needs.

4. Get them fresh towels

As your guests will be sleeping over they’re more than likely to want to wash their face if not shower fully. So, you can assume this and place a couple of fresh towels on their bed. It’s much more comfortable that way.

5. Make and style the guest bed

Put some clean sheets on the guest bed and open it up, if you have a sofa bed like I do, before their arrival. Have a think about giving them extra cushions and pillows as everyone sleep differently, they might like to sleep on top of lots of extra pillows.

Once you’ve got the basics done, I like to do a bit of styling in the room. Whether it’s matching the cushions to the throw or add decorative accessories, it’s an opportunity to have fun with the room design. For example, I love the orange accent in the photos above, plus the botanical bedding pattern!

6. Plan activities but be flexible

Suggest things to do during your guests stay. I don’t recommend that you print out a whole itinerary for them but do have some options in mind. Be flexible with your plan though because your guests might not want to do anything at all. Plus, everyone changes their mind once in a while so don’t take it personally if they don’t want to do what you’ve suggested either. Offer things to do and then see where that takes you!

7. Let your guests help

Many guests love to help. Perhaps not my sister, but other guests would definitely offer to clean up after themselves haha. Depending on the guest perhaps but do let your guests look after themselves. It will be easier for both you and your guests to have some freedom. After all, they are meant to feel themselves ‘at home’.

If you don’t feel comfortable that your guests tidy up, at least let them bring drinks or a dessert to the dinner you’re all sharing together. This will not only make them feel involved but help them thank you for letting them stay.

8. Allow for Privacy

A good host leaves their guests to their own devices when it’s right to do so. Don’t pry and don’t follow your guests around the house. If they want to go to bed early, let them!

9. Enjoy their stay

The most important thing is to have fun. If you’re relaxed then your guests will be too. What’s the point of your guests coming if you’re not going to enjoy their stay?

Top Tip: if it’s your not-so-favourite relative staying then try your best to be nice. Excuse yourself early if you need to before a potential argument breaks out!

Whether it’s family or a friend, or even maybe an Airbnb guest these tips should help you be a great host. Have fun!

What is your top tip for being a good host?

Writer / Blogger on The Fairytale Pretty Picture. Currently working in the head office of a large retail company in London, UK and living in Essex.

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