6 Emily-Post Approved Tips for Preparing Your Home for Overnight Guests

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Become a better host with these tips from the Emily Post Institute

One of the best parts of having a home is being able to share it with the people you love and care about. However, hosting overnight guests isn’t always an easy feat. There’s a lot a host needs to do in order to ensure that their home is a place where guests feel at ease. Learning how to be an accommodating and welcoming host takes practice, but with these tips from etiquette expert Daniel Post Senning, and great-great-grandson of etiquette trailblazer Emily Post, you’ll become a better host in no time.

Spend time in your guest’s space  

Before your guest arrives, take the time to inspect the space in your home that they will be staying in. Whether your guest is staying on the living room couch or a designated guest room, ensure that the area is as comfortable as can be by de-cluttering the area, doing a thorough clean of the space and bringing fans or space heaters into the space as needed.

“Put yourself in your guest’s shoes,” Post says. “Think about what they’ll see and experience and what you might like in their situation.”


Display your Wi-Fi password

Home is where the Wi-Fi connects automatically, right? All kidding aside, visibly displaying your home Wi-Fi username and password is becoming the modern etiquette norm, Post says. Print out the Wi-Fi information on a card or display the information on a written board in order to avoid any input errors

Buy bottled water and special snacks

Play it safe and stock up your guest room with some extra bottles of water and some local packaged snacks your guests can much on if hunger strikes.

Chances are that you’re used to the taste of your tap water, but your guests might not be,” says Post.

Get some fresh flowers

When you’re hosting a guest in your home, the smallest of gestures go the longest ways. Put a sure-fire smile on your guest’s face and place a small arrangement of fresh cut flowers in the guest bedroom, Post recommends. Opt for a classic bouquet of carnations if you’re on a budget: they have a long shelf life after cutting and can be found at your local grocery store.


Place out fresh towels

We recommend buying white towels that are solely designated for guest use. High-quality guest towels are a good investment purchase since you can really feel the difference with a thick, luxurious towel and can last last a long time because they’re not being used everyday.

“Every good host rightfully focuses on giving their guest fresh clean sheets, but fresh towels are equally as important” says Post.

Stock up on first aid and everyday essentials  

Save your guest from an unexpected errand-run by providing everyday essentials in their bedroom or bathroom. In addition to that spare toothbrush, make sure their space is stocked with an extra first aid kit and home pharmacy basics including acetaminophen, ibuprofen, sunscreen, insect-repellent, menstruation supplies, allergy medicine and Pepto-Bismol. Your guest will feel much more comfortable if they don’t need to announce that they’re looking for a particular medication and can see that they have some of these essentials on hand.