Smart Design With Suzette: Simple Steps To Prep For Holiday Guests

Pamper guests with special touches such as fresh flowers, bottled water and chapstick. Courtesy image

Los Alamos

Now that it’s November the holidays are upon us, and with them, holiday guests. Hosting has its shares of anxieties, especially if you’re striving to make your home welcoming.

I’ve read that 40 percent of Americans—including millennials, people with kids, Gen X-ers, and a quarter of Baby Boomers have avoided hosting the holiday because of their clutter. Not only are most people concerned about cleaning and organizing their home for company, there’s also pressure to make it festive, too.

If you’re feeling less-than-enthusiastic about the idea of hosting the holidays in your home, you’re not alone. Here are a few simple steps for getting your home ready with affordable ideas to refresh and organize your home.

The day before guests arrive is no time to pull apart junk drawers and clean out linen closets. Declutter your home, especially the guest rooms and public areas — foyer, kitchen, living room, den and dining room. Remove anything unnecessary from countertops, coffee tables and ottomans.

Add Night Lights
Even though you can navigate your home blindfolded, your guests can’t. Make sure outside lights are working so they don’t trip on the way to your door. Put motion-activated night-lights in hallways, bathrooms, and bedrooms to ensure safe passage after the sunsets.

Identify And Anticipate Needs
I’ve said this before, but the only way identify what your guests might need is to stay in your guest room overnight. You might find you need an extra blanket, pillow, clock or reading materials. By staying overnight in the room, you can best identify the amenities your guests will appreciate. If you have a TV set or clock radio, create a guide with popular channels and stations, as well as programming instructions for the clock.

Pamper Them
Your thoughtfulness will be remembered. Pamper guests by providing them with padded and wooden hangers with plenty of room in the closet for their hanging clothes. Incorporate bottled water, chap stick (for our dry climate) and fresh flowers for an extra-special touch. If you want to feel like a super host – allow guests to feel as they’re staying at a luxury hotel – place guest robes and slippers out for them.

Thoughtful Touches
A small wastebasket, facial tissue, a jewelry tray and hamper can really make your guests feel at home. Make sure there are a few empty dresser drawers for folded clothes.

It’s also a good idea to have some info in your guest room about what there is to do in your area. I have a visitors guide handy so they can get an idea of what they might like to do. Visitor’s guides are free at your local visitors center.

Make Extra Bathroom Supplies Easy to Find
Bring toilet paper and towels out of hiding and place them on open shelves so guests can find them easily. If you don’t have enough wall space for shelves, place these items in open baskets around the bathroom. Also, outfit the tub with a bath mat (to avoid falls) and each toilet with a plunger (to avoid embarrassment). Supply toothpaste, an extra razor, soap, Kleenex, shampoo and conditioner in case they have forgotten something.

Easy Access For Charging Electronics
Everyone travels with his or her smart phones, laptops, and other electronic devices so be sure there’s an easily accessible spot for charging.

It’s easy to convert an outlet to a combined outlet/double USB port. You can order them for $20 on Amazon if you can’t find them locally (Metzger’s carries them.)

Wi-Fi Password
And the most important…the almighty Wi-Fi password! Write down both the name of your Wi-Fi network and the password so your guests can easily access it when visiting. This, I know, they will appreciate!

Getting your home ready for holiday guests not only prepares you for a smooth visit, but also makes them feel welcome. Give your guests a relaxing, comfortable place this holiday season and they will surely appreciate the effort.

Happy Holidays!

Suzette Fox is a local interior designer and real estate broker at RE/MAX First. Visit her website Find her on Instagram and on Facebook at

Supply guests with things they may have forgotten such as lotion, shampoo and conditioner. Courtesy image

Put motion-activated night-lights in hallways, bathrooms and bedrooms to ensure safe passage after the sun sets. Courtesy image

Make charging electronic devices easy. It’s easy to convert an outlet to a combined outlet/double USB port. Courtesy image