How Should I Clean for Last Minute Guests?

You Ask, We Answer: How Should I Clean for Last Minute Guests?

The holidays are wonderful in so many ways, but last minute guests can turn even the most festive mood into a stressful situation! Luckily, we here at Calcagni Real Estate know a few things about staging a home to look its best–and cleaning for last minute visitors is basically staging your home for your loved ones. The goal here is to dedicate no more than 30 minutes to cleaning the areas to which your guests will have access. With some focus and the help of the other members of your household, if they’re able, you can get a targeted clean that makes your home look effortlessly neat–like you were expecting them to drop by, all along! Here are our favorite ways to clean for last minute guests this holiday season.

Organize your entryway

Whether you have a dedicated entryway or your front door opens right into the main living space of your home, chances are, where you enter your Connecticut home gets a lot of traffic, especially during the colder months. Winter coats, rain coats, umbrellas, boots, shoes…they all tend to land right by the main door. Welcome last minute guests by creating an organized entryway that leaves room for them to slip off their shoes and hang their coat–a small gesture that goes a long way in helping guests feel welcome!
Begin by putting away any additional coats that aren’t going to be used while your guests are visiting, and organizing shoes the same way. Pare down duplicates and arrange shoes neatly, and you’re on your way to having a cleaner home already!

Vacuum your floors

Hosting last minute guests calls for strategic cleaning–and running the vacuum is one of the best ways to make your home look more pulled together. Focus on the rooms where you guests will spend time: a family room, the kitchen, a bathroom. Don’t worry about making sure all the bedrooms are clean at this time! The point is to make your home look neat without causing too much stress. Focus on high-traffic areas, taking care to remove pet hair or dust bunnies that may have accumulated on the floors. If you have pets, run the vacuum over furniture to ensure your guests can sit comfortably while visiting.

Wash, dry & put away dishes

Next, put away any clean dishes that are on the dish rack, and wash, dry, and put away dishes that have accumulated in the kitchen sink. Better yet, put them in the dishwasher if you have one and forget about them until your guests leave! The point is to make things look neat; you don’t have to do a deep clean here.

Wipe down countertops

Once your dishes are put away, wipe down countertops. If you have a kitchen island or table where you’ll be serving food to your guests, take special care to make sure they’re wiped clean enough to eat on. It’s amazing what countertops that are free of clutter and coffee stains can do for a home! Your kitchen will instantly look cleaner.

Shine faucets

After your countertops have been wiped down, take a moment to do the same to your kitchen faucet and sink. Ditto for the bathroom to which your last minute guests will have access. A shiny faucet and clean sink instantly make a room look more pulled together, and will leave you feeling more relaxed when the doorbell rings.

Clean the toilet

While you’re in the bathroom, give the toilet a quick clean. This will leave everyone feeling more welcome, and you can relax knowing your guests have a clean bathroom to use. Double check the trash; if the bathroom wastebasket is full, empty it quickly and voila! Your bathroom is now ready to receive your last minute company.

Throw away piles of mail and newspapers

Last but not least, throw away any piles of mail or newspapers that you’ve already gone through. Piles of mail are one of the “clutter culprits” in a home, and often, we hang on to mail we no longer need because we get busy with other things. Now’s the time to toss whatever you no longer need to give your home a neater appearance.

Go ahead and breathe a sigh of relief–you’re done! Now go enjoy your guests, and your cleaner house, too!


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