Let’s face it: Having guests can be extremely fun…or extremely stressful. And if you haven’t invited anyone over lately, your abode is probably less-than-ready for company. Avoid Lorelai and Rory Gilmore’s mistake of waiting until right before visitors show up to start frantically cleaning and get your house in hangout-ready mode before summer hits!
When your friends are discussing where to hang, do they leave out your apartment or house? Are you always the person who wants to go out on the town instead of hosting a wine night? If you answered yes to either of those, that’s a sign it’s time to buckle down and make some improvements to your space. Think how nice it’ll feel to finally open your door to friends.
Plus, if your house becomes the go-to spot of the summer, you’ll save the money you would have spent ridesharing, and you’ll spare yourself the drama of sweating through a perfectly good outfit on your way across town.
Here are four ways to take your place from “can’t hang” to “must hang” this summer:
Invest in Funky Seating
Retro is back, baby. If your hang-up about hosting a hangout is that there’s nowhere to sit, why not try some non-traditional seating that’s sure to set your place apart from the pack?
Modern bean bag chairs put a twist on a childhood favorite, and you can pick a color or texture that looks chic in your pad. You can create a similar effect with papasan chairs, because let’s be real: there’s nobody who will walk into a room and choose a place other than a big ol’ papasan chair as their throne.
One truly down-to-earth idea is creating a pillow nest in any free corner. All you need is a soft rug and a mix of throw and body pillows to seriously up the casual-but-cool vibes.
Turn on a Light (or Two or Three)
You don’t want your friends to think you live in a cave, do you? While a single table lamp might have cut it in college, now you need to rethink your lighting scheme. The right light fixtures will provide a mix of general lighting and task lighting so everyone can see what they’re doing.
Let’s say it’s your week to host game night. Not only will you need a solid surface for everyone to gather around, but you’ll need focused lighting from above. An iconic online brand like Tom Dixon has you covered with industrial-inspired light fixtures and furniture pieces that go together like wine and cheese (which you should also have at your game night for obvious reasons).
Play DJ for a Day
Some silences are comfortable; some are awkward. To avoid the latter, you’ll want to have a playlist—and a way to play it—ready to go. Whether you’re a big fan of commanding your Amazon Echo “Alexa, play some music” or you like to get the party started the old-fashioned way, make sure you have a playlist ready and a sound system that’s richer than your laptop’s speakers.
Stock Up on Refreshments
OK, so you’re not a parent at a soccer game responsible for bringing the entire team Capri Sun pouches, but, you have to assume that, at some point, your friends will get parched. It is almost summer, after all. Don’t you want to be the “host” or the “hostess with the mostest” and have something to offer your houseguests?
Stocking your kitchen with a few essentials—tea, coffee, sparkling water and some simple snacks—is a great way to break the ice and make sure your guests are at ease. You can always order takeout later if you’re still hungry!
Once you get a taste of the hosting life, you’ll wonder why you ever procrastinated in the first place. If you can provide a space that’s cozy and well-lit, plus spin some danceable tunes and pour some thirst-quenching refreshments, then your home will quickly become the place to be this summer. You already know that your home is great, but it’s time to show the world.
Written by Emily Green for Working Mother and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to [email protected]And last but not least, trust in The Official Air Conditioning of Summer to prepare your home for any occasion — and keep your guests comfortable all season long.