tile-ready-holidaysThe holidays are approaching and that means lots of guests in your home. Whether you are having a party or family staying over, you need to make sure your home is ready. Most people focus on general cleaning and decorating, but getting a home ready for the holidays should go a little deeper. After all, your guests will notice things you may not think about.

Below are five things you can do to get your home ready for the holidays:

  1. Clean your tile, stones, and grout.

You probably spray cleanser on your bathroom and kitchen tile every week when you clean, but that doesn’t get the deep-rooted dirt. If you look closely, you will likely see some staining on the grout. It’s not the worst thing in the world, but it makes your space look less bright than they should and you want it to sparkle for your guests.

You have two choices with grout cleaning. You can do it yourself or hire a professional service to clean it. While this type of thing can be a DIY job, you may not have the time with holiday activities.

Be sure chemicals used on your grout are mild. Allow for time to get the job done, It will need some time to dry and could even need resealing, depending on how long it’s been since it was sealed. You may also find a cracked tile you didn’t notice before and you will want to replace.

Polished stones look great in a home. However, tumbled stones can get dull. Those in the kitchen collect grease and those in the bathroom collect soap scum. These can be a little tedious to clean yourself, although the process is fairly simple. A gentle cleanser and a microfiber cloth is best, but a professional could advise on proper equipment.

  1. Clean your fireplace.

A fireplace is the center of holiday décor. The mantel makes for a wonderful place to highlight color, holiday family heirlooms and cards. It also is the place where the stockings are hung and, likely is a spot where family pictures will be taken. You need to make sure it is ready for a closeup.

First, clean out the ashes and soot. If you have a gas fireplace, check the inside walls to make sure there isn’t any cobwebs or other debris. A professional inspection of the chimney could be in order if you haven’t done it in a few years. Years of fireplace use typically leads to soot build up, which could be a safety hazard.

Second, clean the outer area from the front of the fireplace to the hearth. Clean the stone and grout or brick and mortar. Marble and other types of stones and tile may require certain cleansers or professional service people to make them shine and not damage them.

  1. Freshen up bedrooms.

Nothing welcomes your guests more than a fresh, clean bedroom. That means get new sheets and a lovely bedspread. Something like a red and green patchwork quilt adds a homey, holiday feel.

Sweep the ceiling and the walls of any cobwebs, especially if it is a bedroom you don’t often use. Clean the windows for a picture-perfect view and finish by adding a holiday scent candle or spray.

To make it even more welcoming, turn on a small lamp on a dresser or night stand. A small light adds an extra touch of hospitality to visitors.

  1. Fix up bathroom.

Bathrooms are important aspects of hospitality because your guests will want to freshen up after a long trip. Clean it thoroughly, but also check for necessary repairs. Make sure the toilet handle works properly and the sink doesn’t drip.

Also check for caulking around the toilet and the tub. Caulking doesn’t last forever and it is something many people forget about, but it will be important with more use from guests. That is especially true if it is a common bathroom that several will share.

Re-caulking is a relatively easy task for those who know what they are doing. It will save you tons of headaches later.

While you are looking at your tub, see if it needs re-glazing. Tubs, depending on what they are made of, tend to lose their shine after a number of years. Re-glazing can brighten it back to its original glory and make your guests feel like they are bathing or showering in luxury.

  1. Organize closets.

Your guests will need a place to put their coats and clothes and will often use closets as the family changes for various activities. Many closets are overstuffed and unorganized, making it difficult for guests. Get rid of old, unused coats and clothes, provide plenty of strong coat hangers and make sure the bar is strong enough to hold additional items. This may require replacing the wall brackets, as they come loose over time.

The holidays don’t need to be complicated or stressful. Doing these simple things now will help you start out the holiday season ready to welcome guests and showcasing your hospitality!