Preparing your home for holiday visitors

Photo (c) fstop123 - Getty Images

A few simple ways to get your home guest-ready

A record number of consumers are expected to travel over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. If you’re not among those who will be traveling, you may have weary travelers headed your way.

There are a number of things you can do to get your home ready for guests before they show up on your doorstep. Even those who are short on time can turn their home into a comfortable and relaxing place to spend the holidays.

From leaving empty shelves for guests’ belongings to stocking up on toiletries, here are a few low-hassle ways to help guests feel welcome in your home.

Ways to prepare

  • Corral clutter. Declutter guest rooms and main living areas. Clear away anything unnecessary from countertops, coffee tables, and ottomans. Don’t have much time? Simply bag up the clutter, store it in an out-of-sight place (such as a closet or basement), and wait until after your guests leave to go through and organize it.

  • Create space for guests’ belongings. Make room for your guests’ belongings by clearing out closets or racks for coats and setting out baskets to hold shoes and purses. Additionally, make sure there’s a spot for guests to set down their bag or suitcase. If you don’t have a luggage rack, a small table or chair will do.

  • Move your coffee station. To prevent guests from clogging up the kitchen when you’re busy cooking, move your coffee preparation station to a family room. Better yet, consider putting a small coffee pot or water heater for instant cider or tea in your guest’s room. This can help ensure early risers don’t wake anyone up while getting their morning caffeine boost.

  • Create a kid-friendly space. If your guests have small children, you may want to kid-proof your home. Add outlet covers, put breakables out of reach, and secure window treatment cords. To keep kids entertained, fill a safe play area with toys, games, pillows, and perhaps a TV/DVD player for playing movies.

  • Stock up on supplies. Prepare for guests by making sure you’ve got plenty of toilet paper and other necessities, and keep them out in plain sight so guests can find them easily. Keep towels color-coordinated and distinct from others. Finally, add a bath mat to each tub to prevent falls and make sure there is a plunger near each toilet.

  • Print out your wifi password. Amid the holiday hustle and bustle, your guests may not remember to ask for your wifi password until everyone has gone to bed. For a polished way to display wifi information, consider printing out an editable PDF with your network name and password. You might also want to provide instructions on how to operate your TV and sound systems.

Take a Home Warranty Quiz. Get matched with an Authorized Partner.