Be a Great Houseguest

I love to travel during the summer and visit family and friends across the country, and I usually stay with them to make sure we have tons of time together. Some things I worry about when staying with people is wearing out my welcome and not being invited back. No host wants to have houseguests where they are happy to see them come and even happier to see them go. So here are my tried and true tips to ensure that you will be invited back to your host’s home next year and the year after that.

  • Do clean up after yourself.
    There is nothing worse than having a houseguest who thinks that they are staying at a hotel. If you want to make sure the door will always be open to you, treat your host’s home better than your own home and meticulously clean up after yourself. You may not neatly make up your bed at home, but make sure you are the ideal houseguest and make up the bed as soon as you wake up. Try not to use a lot of towels; as a matter of fact, you should reuse the towels that you are given. If you are disgusted by using your towels more than once, be sure to wash your towels before you leave to go back home.
  • Do not bring your pets.
    I love animals, and I am crazy about my little dog, Kobe. Even though Kobe is my baby, I understand that everyone does not feel the same way about animals as I do, so I leave him with his favorite sitter when I go away. When staying at someone’s home (even if it’s only for a day) try not to bring your pets. Find a nice sitter or kennel that will take care of your fur baby while you unwind with friends and/or family. Now, if your hosts are pet people, by all means bring your pets, but be sure to get permission first.
  • Do offer to help with meals and any out-of-pocket expenses.
    It can be quite a bit of pressure being a host to a houseguest. One way to lighten the load for the host is by offering to pay for some of the meals and toiletries. You should also assist with cooking while making it a bonding experience for everyone.
  • Do not forget to get a “thank you” gift for the host.
    Always bring a “thank you” gift to show the host that you appreciate their hospitality. It does not have to be anything expensive, but something that the host will enjoy. A good bottle of wine, candles, a houseplant or even dinner at a nice restaurant are always great go-to gifts for the host.
  • Do find out the rules of the house. 
    When staying at someone’s home, you should always find out the rules of the house, such as what time everyone goes to bed and rises, or if they wear shoes in the house. When on vacation you may want to sleep in, but if your hosts are early risers you may come off as lazy if you are still asleep while everyone else is awake.
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