How to Be a Good House Guest?

While some people are sincerely hospitable and always opening their homes to distant relatives and friends, it is possible for a house guest to overstay their welcome. Staying as a house guest in someone’s home is an honor; and while your host or hostess may encourage you to make yourself at home – there are house rules and boundaries that should be followed. For this matter, house guests who take advantage of their gracious host may not receive a second invitation. Here are a few tips to ensure a happy stay.

1. Wait for an Invitation

Because of a busy life, most people look forward to quite weekend breaks or vacations at home. For this matter, never assume that people want a house guest. Even if the person you are visiting is your best friend in the world or sibling, sometimes, they may prefer a weekend of rest and home relaxation, minus the pressure of being a good host. To avoid becoming the irritating house guest, always ask in advance or wait until you are invited.

2. Avoid Extended Stays

Prior to arriving, hosts and guests should confirm a time frame. Although rational thinking people avoid overstaying their welcome, some people have the tendency to remain at a friend or relatives home for several days or weeks. Of course, situations occur that justify longer stays (divorce, loss of employment, need a change of scenery, etc.) Still, house guests should receive clearance for extended stays.

3. Contribute to Average Household Expenses

The occasional weekend guest is usually not required to contribute financially to household expenses. On the other hand, if staying with a friend or relative for an extended period, offering a monetary contribution for grocery shopping or utilities is a kind gesture. Furthermore, house guests may also contribute by tidying the house or preparing a few meals.

4. Avoid Making a Mess

Some people are neat freaks. When staying as a house guest, assume that your host or hostess falls into this category. With this said, keep your sleep area neat and clean at all times. Moreover, if sharing a bathroom with the hosts, avoid leaving personal items lying around, and clean the wash area before leaving.

5. Never Bring Additional House Guests

Even though your host or hostess is looking forward to your weekend visit, he or she may not be expecting your children, friend, or pet. If bringing along a stowaway, ask for permission in advance. Your host or hostess may prefer to bond without having screaming children running through their house, or your annoying friend chattering uncontrollably.

6. Show Respect for Boundaries

House guests should remember that certain areas of the home are off-limit – unless given verbal permission to access these areas. Thus, avoid entering the refrigerator at leisure, or raiding your friend’s medicine cabinet, household drawers, or closet.

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