With fewer couples having kids right away in recent years, fewer of them are ready when they open their homes to friends and family who do. Whether you’re throwing a party or simply inviting a dear friend over for a visit, you’ll need to take a few steps to prepare for house guests with children. This article will cover some of the basics to help you get ready.
Make Your Home More Child-Friendly
When only adults live in your house, its design likely won’t have children in mind. That means that kids won’t be able to reach certain things, and your furniture won’t have adequate protection against them. Unless you want to spend a large portion of your time grabbing things that are out of reach for the kids, make sure you move any items they’ll need regularly to a lower location. You’ll also want to shield your furniture from any possible messes kids make with slipcovers. That way, you won’t have to worry about them ruining your favorite chair.
Set Up an Area for Them To Play In
If your guests’ kids are young enough, they probably won’t be involved with anything that you and your friends will be doing, so you’ll want to give them an area of their own to play in. Spare bedrooms or finished basements are perfect for this, but you could also set up a discrete corner of the living room if there’s nowhere else to put them.
Regardless of where you decide, make sure you give their kids something to do as well. They’ll probably bring some of their own toys, but setting up a TV or giving them some crafts to work on will help keep them occupied.
Remove Any Possible Hazards
Most people don’t have dangerous objects like swords or other weapons on display. However, some do, so make sure to lock those away when kids are present. Not all hazards are that obvious, though. If you have a coffee table with jagged corners, you might want to move it to your room temporarily or find a way to cushion it. Anything that presents a poisoning or choking hazard should go into an upper cabinet or a locked drawer. No matter the object in question, kids have a knack for finding unique ways of hurting themselves, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Ask Their Parents Questions
At the end of the day, no amount of our advice will help you prepare for a child that you know very little about. Talk to your visiting friends or family about how you should prepare for their children. Maybe their child is terrified of loud noises, and you have a clock that performs a blaring chime every hour. Maybe they’re allergic to peanuts, and that’s all you have in the pantry. That’s something you probably wouldn’t have considered without asking.
If their kid has special needs, you’ll likely have to do a few things to make your home more accessible to them. Regardless of what you do to prepare for house guests with children, nothing will make you more ready than being open and honest with these parents. As long as you do that, everything should go smoothly.