How to Help Your Hosts Keep a Clean Home - dummies

How to Help Your Hosts Keep a Clean Home

By Gill Chilton

If you are a long-term house guest, help your friends for helping you. Take the necessary steps to help them maintain a clean, stain-free home. Hopefully, they will return the favour when it is their turn to stay with you. This isn’t just for cleaning up the room that you spend most of your time in. Pay attention to messes in every room of the house.

Take responsibility for your party

Children and pets you bring into someone else’s home are under your instructions to behave cleanly. Sometimes, this gets complicated because your host doesn’t know kids and hands around sticky chocolate or realises too late that claws and paws can ruin a leather sofa. If you bring messy people with you, bring your own clear-ups. Carry wet-wipes and small plastic sacks and a bag that you can dump them into.

Leave the bathroom clean

There is an area where personal preferences are everything – your host’s preferences, that is. Take just five seconds when you go into the room to notice the position of the seat lid and towels and whether the soap stands in a dish. Then leave everything exactly as it was before your visit.

If you can do so without too much snooping, re-freshen the toilet with cleaner if needed and pop on a new roll of tissue. Always report any sink or pan blockage.

If you’re staying over, don’t take over the bathroom shelf: Your flannels (washcloths), toothbrush, and make-up belong in the guest bedroom.

Most domestic hot water tanks hold enough hot water for a maximum of two baths though electrically-heated showers can go on forever. So you can shower without worry, but ask before taking a bath. Lay a towel on the floor where you’ll step out, then put that towel into a wash basket. Vent the room afterwards, and take it as your responsibility to close the window a short time later.

Know when to stop in the kitchen

Offering to do the dishes is great, especially if you’ve just enjoyed a meal prepared for you. But before you get going, and without making it into a huge event, ask a few questions about how your host likes things done, and which items go into the dishwasher.

It’s fine to put cutlery back into the drawer afterwards, but leave out plates and pans, unless specifically instructed. Putting food back into the fridge and cupboards is also a no-no – you don’t know the correct places. It’s also an intrusion to start wiping down the table or worktops. Your host may feel you’re criticising him for not being sufficiently clean.

Keep the guest room neat and clean

Unlike at a hotel, you don’t get maid service when you’re staying with friends or family, so keep to good habits. As you leave, strip off the sheets and take the cover off the duvet. Leave the duvet and pillows neatly folded on the bed, with the used bedding piled alongside. Empty the rubbish bin into a plastic bag, and put this inside the main rubbish bin.