A checklist for cleaning your house for guests

The busy holiday season is almost here, and with the holidays comes out-of-town guests. Get your home ready for visitors with this cleaning checklist.

  1. Start in their sleeping space.

Whether they are staying overnight or for a few weeks, guests appreciate having their own space. In the guest bedroom:

  • Remove excess clutter or storage. Guests don’t want to feel like they are sleeping in a storage room! Move tubs, boxes, and clutter to another part of the house.
  • Change the sheets. Clean sheets and refreshed bedding can make a space clean and comfortable.
  • Open up dresser space. Give guests at least two drawers of dresser space, as well as a place to hang their clothes in a closet. Consider investing in a suitcase stand to give them a place to keep their bag.
  • Add homey touches. It’s often the little things our guests remember. Add homey touches such as local maps, bottles of water, a copy of the WiFi password, or spare charging cords to give guests a memorable stay.
  1. Make the bathroom sparkling clean

Even if guests will not have their own bathroom, ensure the space is clean, tidy, and has plenty of towels for everyone!

  • Deep clean everything! The floors, toilet, shower, tub, mirror, sink, countertops, and even shower curtains should all be cleaned and washed before guests arrive.
  • Set out clean towels. Make sure guests have at least one bath towel and one washcloth per person. Women often use more than one towel, so providing extras is a thoughtful touch. Make sure guests know where to put their dirty towels and offer to wash them as often as they prefer.
  • Provide toiletries. Guests flying or travelling with limited luggage may have forgotten toiletries at home. Stock the bathroom with extra shampoo, conditioner, mouthwash, toothpaste, a hairdryer – and plenty of toilet paper!
  1. Tackle the rest of the house

Focus your cleaning on areas of the house your guests will be in. If they won’t be in the master bedroom or basement, don’t waste time cleaning there!

  • Clean out and stock the fridge. Take five minutes to wipe down shelves and remove any expired food. Make sure your fridge and pantry are stocked with plenty of guest-friendly essentials including milk and juice, coffee, fruit, bread, and fresh produce.
  • Vacuum and mop. Clean floors can help the rest of the house feel fresh. Vacuum and mop in the last few hours before guests arrive to leave your home fresh and sparkling.
  • Final touches. Make one final sweep through the house, emptying trash cans, replacing flickering light bulbs, or picking up clutter from counters or tables. Light a scented candle or other air freshener to give your home a welcoming smell.
  • Don’t stress! Your guests are coming to see you, not your home; a stray book or magazine on the coffee table or some toys in the living room are a part of visiting someone’s home. Likewise, save painting projects, minor remodels, and other renovations for another time.

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