Five Tips for Being the Best Guest when Visiting Someone Else’s House

Visiting a friend’s house is always a fun and exciting activity to look forward to. However, ensuring that you respect their home and their housekeeping rules is a crucial factor in keeping friendships strong and making your friend feel comfortable having you in their space. 

Language experts at Preply carried out a recent survey of over 1,000 people and discovered the home etiquette rules which mean the most to Brits and created a five-step guide on how to be the best guest possible when visiting a friend to make sure that you receive an invite back again.

The five house etiquette rules you need to follow to be the best guest and get invited back every time

Always take your shoes off at the door

62% of Brits said that they would always take their shoes off when entering someone else’s house. 

As a visitor, taking your shoes off at your host’s front door is a simple way to show respect to their home from the get-go. Leave all of the dirt and debris outside which could potentially dirty or even stain their floors. 

Opting to go barefoot also shows that you are relaxed in your host’s presence and comfortable in their home, which will create a nice atmosphere and help your visit get off on the right foot! The survey conducted by Preply also found that 36% said that they would only take them off if the host requested it and only 2% said that they never would.

Bring a gift for the host – depending on the occasion

Bringing a gift when you visit someone’s house is generally a very kind gesture and is an excellent way to show your gratitude and repay your friend for their hospitality and hosting. Preplys study found that only 38% of Brits would always take a gift for their host and believe it to be a polite gesture. The majority of people, 54%, answered that they would reserve this gesture for special occasions only. 

Preply spoke with Etiquette expert, John-Paul, who says: 

Traditionally, you would take a ‘hostess gift’ for the host to enjoy in their own time. Often it is a bottle of wine and it should not be assumed that this is for that particular evening as the host may have selected another for the table. The gift is at their discretion as to when it’s used. If gifting flowers, then these should be sent earlier on in the day, not while the host is trying to greet you as flowers need more immediate care. Most of this applies to long-prepared lunches and definitely dinners. Calling round for a quick coffee and a chat won’t necessarily require a gift.”

Time management – don’t leave your friend waiting

The time that you arrive for commitments, such as visiting a friend, can leave a lasting impression on both the host and any other guests. Knowing when is best to arrive can be tricky and online searches have increased 39% globally in the past year for “Is it better to be on time, early or late?”. 

Preplys research has settled the debate, finding that 61%of respondents prefer to arrive on time, this shows that you have respect for the plans and value your friend’s time. 29% of Brits opted for arriving early, this way you can give a hand setting up, and 10% prefer to be a bit late, to give everyone time to arrive.

Help the host with household chores

62% of Brits have picked up the respectful habit of contributing to the host’s efforts, answering that they would always offer to help with household chores. Being conscious about cleaning up after yourself at your friend’s house, or at least making the offer is a highly appreciated gesture, from washing the dishes and glasses used during your visit to wiping down tables after eating. 

It may not be your home and your responsibility, but the gesture will certainly go a long way as the study also found that 90% of hosts in the UK believe in extending hospitality and making guests feel welcome by offering a drink or a snack to guests – therefore, it is fair to return this hospitality by tidying any mess you make.

Try to finish the all of food given to you to show your gratitude

Finishing all of the food provided by the hosts is a gesture appreciated by a whopping 78% of Brits. This is a really kind gesture and shows that you have enjoyed the meal they have made for you, as well as acknowledging and appreciating all of the hard work that has been put into it. 

Of course, sometimes it may not always be possible to finish the whole meal as portions can be big and we all have different taste preferences. However, as the data shows, finishing all of your food would be appreciated by many!

Rachel Bartee

Rachel Bartee is a blogger and freelance writer dreaming of a tour round the world to write a story of her greatest life adventure. For the time being, she feels inspired by her daily yoga sessions and studies Interpersonal Relationships.