Do you want your house to be a place where people love to gather? If so, then you probably know how expensive it can be to make it feel like a welcoming home.
Which is why I’m always on the lookout for great ways to make my home a more hospitable place without it costing me a bundle.
So for those that are in the same boat, I wanted to share a few ideas I’ve gathered over the years.
Then, hopefully, you can make your home the place to gather and just in time for the holidays too.
Ways to Make Your Home Welcoming
Here is how I make my home a welcoming place on a budget:
1. No Room for Clutter Bugs
Making your home more welcoming and hospitable to guests isn’t all about home décor. In fact, I’d say the most important part of the process is having a clean home.
So don’t get all antsy thinking that someone is going to give your home the white glove treatment.
But you should want your guests to feel like they have room to breathe. Which is why it is so important to declutter all visible areas.
Believe me, I understand how quickly clutter builds up. I live in a smaller home with 5 people. I’m actually staring at the clutter that seems to have gathered overnight on the top of my fridge as I’m typing this.
So when I say, I know how easily clutter builds, I really do. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t stay on top of it. Try spending 15 minutes a day to declutter your home. Just pick a spot and go for it. When the timer goes off, then stop.
Then you can pick up where you left off the next day. This is a great way to manage the clutter in your home without going crazy trying to stay on top of it all.
Plus, if you declutter daily, then you are more likely to have a clutter-free home when unexpected visitors pop in.
2. Clean-Up, Clean-Up
This next step sort of goes hand in hand with the previous step. It is important to keep your home looking clean.
Now, I understand, if you have kids, a job, a homestead, or anything else going on, finding time to clean can be really difficult. This is why I break my cleaning down into daily chores so I’m not overwhelmed.
Even living in a smaller home, I don’t always find the time each week to deep clean my house. But as I mentioned, with 5 people in a home, if you don’t stay on top of certain areas things get gross really quickly.
But if I stay on top of these areas, then my house just feels cleaner. Then when I have the time, I’ll dust and do the other tedious jobs.
However, if I can keep my floors, kitchen, and bathroom clean, then I’m satisfied and prepared for guests almost any time.
3. Centerpieces Add Charm
My home always feels more welcoming, even to me, when I have a centerpiece on my kitchen table. This can range from fresh cut flowers to a DIY centerpiece.
So don’t think that you have to spend a bundle to keep a centerpiece. In fact, you don’t at all. You can grow flowers in order to keep fresh flowers on the table.
Or you could create a great centerpiece, like this one, for only a few dollars. Adding anything unique and eye catching to a home’s main point of attraction (the kitchen) is always a great way to make your home feel more welcoming.
4. Yum… That Smells Good
Do you remember walking into your grandmother’s home and it always smelled so delicious? Yes! Mine was the exact same way. It didn’t matter if she was making cookies, chicken salad, or supper, her home always smells wonderful.
Naturally, people draw to food and have fond memories that occurred over food.
So if you want your home to be more welcoming, then try to keep baked goods around. I did this for many years. I had a cake stand that a few times a week, I’d fill with fresh baked goods.
Then I’d leave it out on the counter until they were gone. This was great because most days my home smelled like a bakery (which is always a welcoming fragrance), and I always had something to offer anyone who walked through my door.
5. Keep the Home Fires Burning
What I mean by this step is to light a candle. Candles have a way of offering delicious scents while also giving off a warmth that just makes people feel right at home.
So change out your candles depending upon the season. You could do pumpkin spice for fall, freshly baked cookie scents for winter, fresh linen smells for spring and fragrant flower scents for summer. Those are just ideas, of course.
But don’t feel like you must spend a fortune on candles to accomplish this. Instead, you can make your own candles to help save money.
Either way, it will add a fresh smell to your home which is always welcoming. As well as offer a warmth to your home as well.
6. Home is Where the Heart Is…So Show It
Do you keep great grandma’s homemade quilt she made locked up in a closet? If so, pull that thing out. Why?
Because your guests will love your home décor. I seriously doubt when your grandma made it that she intended for no one to ever see it. My mother-in-law was such a crafty woman. She crocheted and quilted all of the time.
In the beginning, I put all of her items away because I treasured them.
Finally, her frustration with my lack of use and my frustration with running out of space to store them all came out in a very candid conversation between us. It was such a relief that she wanted me to use these items and show them off.
Now, when you come in my home, you see her stuff everywhere. We have her handmade quilts on our couches, her crocheted doilies on my end tables, her canisters on my kitchen counter, and the list go on.
And you know what? My guests love it! They are conversational pieces that everyone notices.
Plus, since my mother-in-law is no longer with us, it gives me an opportunity to tell what a magnificent lady she was and share her talents with people who didn’t have the chance to meet her.
So any handmade items you have, whether you made them or someone made them for you, pull them out and use them to add character to your home. It will be a unique character that no other home has.
7. Let the Sun Shine In
When you walk into a dark cave, do you find yourself saying, “Ahhh, this is home!” Probably not. You feel a little uncomfortable because you can’t really see what is going on around you because of the darkness.
Well, guests kind of feel the same way. Most people like natural light when they enter a home so they can get a good view of where they are. It is helpful in locating the restroom, kitchen, and also getting a feel for the person’s home they just walked into.
Plus, it saves some embarrassment of having to ask where the restroom is and things of that nature. Natural light just has a way of making people feel a little more at ease with where they are.
Not to mention, they can see how clean your home is so they don’t have to worry about stepping on things or where they’ll sit.
So there are all kinds of benefits to just throwing back the curtains and letting some light in for your guests.
Again, I understand, that a little shade in the home is good during the warmer months to help save on the electric bill. I do it too, but when you know a guest is coming over, open the blinds, the front door, and the curtains to make them feel more at home in your home.
8. Keep the Coffee On
I love walking into people’s homes and smelling the coffee immediately. It has a way of immediately making you feel more welcome. I think it has to do with the fact that it is a familiar smell that most of us can identify with.
So when you know that you have guests coming over, put on a pot of coffee. The aroma will fill your home, and your guests will most likely enjoy the hot beverage too.
9. We’ll Just Call You Paula
Along the same lines, you’ll want to get in touch with your inner Paula Dean (or which ever celebrity chef you most identify with.) Because when you have company coming over, it is always a good idea to have food on hand.
Again, this doesn’t have to be super expensive or stressful on you. You can do what I mentioned above, which is keep a cake stand full of baked goods on the counter at all times.
Or you could make and freeze some appetizers to pop in the oven when you know guests are heading in your direction.
Finally, you could always can food so you can pop open a couple of jars and have a quick, homemade meal on hand for your guests too. These are all ways to feed company quickly and on a budget as well.
10. Slip Your Shoes Off
You want a comfortable home. I know a lot of people love to have very regal homes, but the fact is, those types of homes make people feel more uncomfortable than anything.
So when you decorate your home, decorate for functionality and comfort. You want people to feel like they can come in your home, slip off their shoes, and take a nap.
Actually, I get told that all of the time by my friends when they come over, and I take that as the biggest compliment because they are comfortable at my house. Keep your guests comfort level in mind when you begin changing your home around to make it more inviting. Don’t think so much of impressing them as you do about just making your house a comfy place for you and for your friends.
11. Create an Art Gallery
Do you have children? If so, then let your home reflect your family. Part of making your home welcoming to others is to give them a glimpse of who the people are that live there.
So if your kids have art work, go ahead and put it on display. The key to this is to do it in a way that it doesn’t create a cluttered feel.
For instance, you could put a couple of the pictures on the fridge. Then frame a few of the other pictures. If your kids do sculpting or other fun arts and crafts, then create a floating shelf to display those items.
Putting stuff on display that represents the members of your family is a great way to welcome your guests to your home.
12. Say Cheese
Again, this is your home that you are being kind enough to open up to others. Don’t feel like everything has to be based around everyone else. After all, this is your house.
But you still want a home that people enjoy coming to in order to hang out, celebrate holidays, etc.
So why not give them more of a glimpse of your family? If you love pictures, then find ways to display those family outings that were caught on film. If you have family photos taken, then display those as well.
Not only does this give your guests an idea of who you really are, but it is also a great way to spark up a conversation. If a guest can look over and see a picture of your family white water rafting, then it leaves room for them to say something like, “Oh, you’ve gone white water rafting. I have too! What was your experience like?”
Then the conversation can take off from there. This is helpful, especially for people you are having over for the first time.
13. Colors Make the Difference
Finally, consider the warmth of your home when painting your walls. If you are a very vibrant person who loves bright colors, that is great.
But keep in mind that warm colors usually make a home a little more inviting. That is why I usually do an accent wall in my home that pops (and represents me), but I do warmer colors for the other walls.
Not only does my husband appreciate this (since he likes less vibrant colors), but it also gives my home character and makes my home more welcoming to others.
Well, you now know of 13 budget-friendly ways to make your home feel more welcoming to your guests.
But now, you are up. What do you do around your home to make others feel more welcome?
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