Having overnight guests at your house can be intimidating even though having house guests can be so much fun. By preparing for visitors ahead of time you will ensure that your guests will have a comfortable stay, and you will be able to take some pressure off yourself during their stay as well. It doesn’t take much but a few dollars and a little pre-planning to create a cozy space for overnight or weekend guest.
1. Bedside Amenities
Guests are not used to the new space so ample lighting is great for them to be able to move comfortably around the room. Lights on end table by the bed that they can easily turn on in the middle of the night are perfect. Guest may like to read a bit before falling asleep. Make sure to have proper wattage bulbs on each side of the bed to accommodate this. If your guest bedroom is smaller (which means you will have smaller end tables) opt for a Swing Arm Lamp that attach to the wall. This lighting set up will also allow one person to read with ample, warm light while the other sleeps.
In addition to good lighting in the guest room, leave the small lights on throughout the house at night so guests can find their way around at night. Also, a nightstand by the bed allows the guest to be able to keep their personal items by their bed. A recharging station is also a welcome sight for guests. A clock on a nightstand is helpful as well—ideally an illuminated face so that guest can view the time in the dark. Although the iHome clock is nowhere near as aesthetically pleasing as other clocks your guest will love it for its ease of use and bright display. Plus, it has an iPhone/iPod docking station. Win win.
If the space allows place a carafe of water on the nightstand. There are simple and inexpensive options of combination carafes with drinking glasses that are perfect for such a set-up.
2. Reading Materials
Stock a basket with local magazines and history of the area. Your guest will love looking through these periodicals and learning more about the state or city they are visiting.
3. Creature Comforts
Provide lots of pillows so that guests can choose how many they want to use at their own liking. Having an extra throw blanket at the end of the bed is also a welcome thought. Along with these comforts you can direct your guests to where you keep your extra linens so that they can grab them as they please.
4. Lotions and Potions
Sometimes guests forget things, or do not have room to pack some things. One way to provide guests with any toiletry item they may need is I have a glass container filled lotion, shampoo, conditioner, sunscreen, and more samples in the guest room available for the guest to grab & use whenever they need them. This works double duty as a great way to store your samples.
5. Cleanliness is King
There is no shortcut when it comes to bedding. You don’t need to spend big bucks on the most expensive bedding available, quality linens can be found at places like HomeGoods and Marshall’s. White sheets and towels present a clean boutique hotel feeling and are easy to bleach in order to retain a crisp look. To avoid the whole “guest didn’t have a towel when they went in the shower now I have to hand a towel to the guest while they are naked in the shower” situation, have towels visible & easily accessible for guests. Scrub the bathroom, leave extra TP and a plunger (to avoid any toilet awkwardness) and if you are not sharing a bathroom with your guests remove any personal items so that they don’t have to tip toe around your prescriptions and such.
6. A Place for Everything and Everything in its Place
Have an area where guests can unpack their bags. A dresser or a closet in the room supplied with hangers that guests can use is ideal, but if you do not have areas like this, a simple stool or suitcase stand can also work great.
7. Provide Privacy and a Fan
If you do not have a spare room, give your guests an area of the home that they will have some privacy. Whether it’s a separate living room or a specific area of the house for their stay. Your guests will thank you! Also, if they are in their own room be sure they have privacy on the windows with curtains or blinds so that they feel safe & secure. A fan is another great idea to have in a guest room for those that need a fan to sleep & for when temperature control in the guest room.
8. Extra Touches
Ask your guests if they have anything specific they want to eat or drink while they stay with you. Have coffee, tea, milk, and/or water available. Stock other staples that you think your guest could need or want & have them easily available either in their room (there are tons of cats and baskets that you can use). Also, to make things easy, have a meal plan before the guests arrive. By planning out the meals you will be cooking before they come it ensures you have all of the food in the house & it will allow more time to spend with the guests.
Place your Wi-Fi password in a place that can be seen easily—it is after all the 21st century.
9. Add Some Whimsy and Unexpected Fun
Offer a small polaroid camera so that guests can take a memory and place it in a guest book. They will love adding to the book and looking through messages and images from your past guest.
Another fun extra touch you could offer are medium sized smooth rocks with a sharpie. Invite guests to write the favorite experience from the trip on the rock and then leave it in a pretty bowl.
Grab a few postcards at local tourist spots, and keep them in the guest room. Your visitors will be able to send them out soon after arriving and to their recipients before they return from their trip. Don’t forget the stamps!
It can be a little stressful at times having guests because you want them to have a good time & worry if they are comfortable enough. If they are guests in your home, they are most likely comfortable enough to tell you if they need anything. So don’t stress. Have a great time with your house guests & enjoy!