How to Prep Your Home for Holiday Guests

By: Sarah Beaumont

December 19, 2016

Sure we love gathering our loved ones around us during the holiday season. But gift-shopping, party-planning and holiday hosting can make the holidays way more taxing than relaxing. So how to cut down on the stress? Pour yourself a strong serving of eggnog and start prepping now!

Whether the whole fam is coming to your place on Christmas Day or they’re staying for all eight nights of Hannukah, these tips and tricks will ensure that your guests the five-star treatment without turning you into a nut(cracker).

Have extra blankets and bedding readily available. 

Whether you’ve set up a space in the living room or have a private suite for your guests, make sure their bed is made upon arrival and that they have access to extra blankets. Providing cozy throws and clean sheets will ensure that every visitor stays snug in bed.

Make the guest room work for multiple guests.

How to Prep Your Home for Holiday Guests, Laurel & Wolf, via Architectural Digest by Pieter Estersohn

via Architectural Digest by Pieter Estersohn

You’ve got grandma and a grandkid in one room and a couple of cousins in another. With differing bedtime schedules, sharing a room can be tricky. To make sure everyone gets a goodnight’s sleep, include task lighting and ear plugs, so habits like late-night reading or chronic snoring don’t disrupt any roommates.

Provide downtime entertainment. 

No matter how jam-packed your holiday schedule is, guests will probably have a little time to relax and entertain themselves. Designate an area like the den or a reading nook where visitors know they’re welcome to hang. Keep it stocked with books and magazines or toys and games for kids. And make sure to provide your WiFi password!

Bring in additional seating.

When there are more people in the house, more seating is necessary. In common areas, poufs and ottomans make for easy options. If  your guest room is big enough, consider adding a bench at the end of the bed or a chair in the corner just like they do in hotel rooms.

Keep fresh towels and key toiletry items handy.

How to Prep Your Home for Holiday Guests, Laurel & Wolf, Laurel & Wolf

Laurel & Wolf

It’s better for everyone if your guests don’t have to ask for things constantly. Put together toiletry packages ahead of their arrival that include mini shampoo bottles, toothpaste, a toothbrush and whatever else you imagine they might need. A basket of fresh towels in every bathroom or bedroom will save you a trip to the linen closet or the laundry room.

Have a place to stash coats and bags.

Whether it’s a hallway coat rack or a closet in a bedroom, designate a space for people to store their stuff, like suitcases, coats and winter wear. If you have a set of drawers in your spare room, encourage guests to unpack their clothes so they feel more at home. Living out of a suitcase is never a good feeling.

Build up your bar & beverage supply.

Let’s be honest — the holidays always feel cheerier with a generous dose of cheer (of the liquid variety of course). Keep the fridge fully stocked and use a bar cart as a drink station.

Deck the halls.

How to Prep Your Home for Holiday Guests, Laurel & Wolf, via Laurel & Wolf / New Darlings

via Laurel & Wolf / New Darlings

Nothing puts people in the holiday spirit more than festive decorations, seasonal sounds, and fragrant scents. Light candles to improve your space’s ambiance, play Christmas music and decorate the house with twinkling lights, evergreens, and cozy textures.

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