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5 Areas to Clean Before Guests Arrive

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Living in your house needs to feel comfortable, right? But what's comfortable to you might not be so comfortable to someone else. Leaving the rest of your everything-but- the-kitchen-sink ice cream sundae on your coffee table might feel completely fine to you, but maybe not to Uncle Rob. We're not saying live trying to impress people; we're saying that when you go to a hotel or a restaurant, you don't want to sit down to a table that hasn't been wiped off, or sleep in a bed that hasn't been made, right? You expect tidiness. Plus, making areas cleaner than you usually have them gives a welcoming vibe to people visiting your house, whether they're staying for the weekend or just for dinner. Here are the top five areas you should tidy before your guests arrive.

Living Room

It's the first room on the list because it's likely the first room your guests will gather in. Whether you're catching up on the latest news with your pals while reclining and sipping some decaf, or watching the hockey game with a few beers, the living room is a communal place to relax and unwind. Since the living room is typically shared between everybody in the home, it's probably going to need some extra elbow grease to make it shine. Allow a few hours for this, and really focus on making it as warm and comfortable as your favorite person to be around is. Here’s where to target when cleaning your living room: 

  • Clean under the couch 
  • Wipe the coffee table 
  • Vacuum the carpet or sweep the floor 
  • Wipe dust around the photo albums, TV stand, and anywhere else!


Who loves bleach? We do, and most people we know who love it love it because of...drum roll...their bathrooms. When a bathroom is clean and tidy, it takes the anxiety out of doing "bathroom" things that might be considered embarrassing. Your bathroom's appearance says a lot about your self-care, too. Get the rubber gloves out and start scrubbing, my friend. If you're going to really get to scouring, you should give yourself 30 minutes for a small bathroom and an hour for a big one. Here’s what to target when cleaning your bathroom: 

  • Clean in, around, and UNDER the toilet 
  • Scrub all soap scum from the shower 
  • Clean the bathroom sink 
  • Clean the mirror - no streaks!

Dining Room

For eating, playing board games, or blowing out candles, the dining room is perfect for bringing your party together in an organized, welcoming way. There's plenty of room for food, presents, and even Monopoly! There's also tons of room for accumulated newspapers, unpaid bills, and more space taking items. Since most of the dining room clutter is sortable, give yourself a good few minutes to move those items to an office, or if you have the time, sort them and put them in folders. The dining room is important to tidy up because a lot of social interaction goes on in there - almost as much as in the living room. Hop to! Here’s what to target when cleaning your dining room: 

  • Make sure the chairs and table are stain free 
  • Wipe the top clear and remove all junk 
  • Check to make sure there’s nothing left under the table

Guest Room

If you're having company over to spend the night, this is a given, but even if there are daytime guests, make sure the area is clear of anything personal you want to keep from (well-meaning) snoops. You never know when a guest might have an unexpected phone call, an unexpected headache, or a rough night. Vacuum up, dust away, and you're good to go. Here’s what to target when cleaning your guest room: 

  • Clean all the sheets, pillowcases, and bedding 
  • Dust the shelves, dressers, or anything on the walls. 
  • Keep the closet clear of junk


You might assume the kitchen isn't necessary to clean, but if it's the conjoining room of your living room and dining room (and even if it's not), it's important to keep your dishes washed and floor swept so your guests will feel like your home's cleanliness is up to par. It's one thing if it's your have a coffee cup laying around from the morning, it’s another if you’ve accumulated a week’s worth of food scraps and cutlery. Turn on some music, and you'll have it spic and span in no time. Here’s what to target when cleaning the kitchen:

  • Sweep all food crumbs and junk off the floor 
  • Use floor cleaner to get it clean and shiny fast 
  • Wipe down the counter and remove all visible food 
  • Take out the trash and recycling 
  • Scrub the stove if you must 
  • Clean the microwave, please!

Of course, it's important to tend to all of your house, guests or not, but these are the five most important areas to clean when you're having people over. It's not an exhaustive list by any means, but if you're panicking about hosting, this is the best place to start. Happy cleaning!

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