Hosting 101: 9 Quick Pre-Party Clean-Up Tips

How to make your house look presentable in less than 15 minutes.

You prepped and cleaned days in advance, but clutter and crumbs keep appearing. It's OK — life happens. We understand the struggle, so we came up with nine quick tips for tidying up before guests arrive.

Royal Blue Rug Defines Contemporary Living Room

Royal Blue Rug Defines Contemporary Living Room

Because the home has an open floor plan, designer Natalie Myers took care to differentiate one room from the next. Thus, a royal blue rug defines the living room, while a brown leather sofa serves as a wall between this space and the entryway.

Photo by: Phoebe Chauson

Phoebe Chauson

Focus on High-Traffic Areas

Don't get caught up on rooms guests won't even see. Now is not the time to clear out the closet.

Remove Clutter

Mail, bags, old magazines, empty cups — anything that doesn't have an immediate purpose should be put away (even if it needs to be stuffed in the junk drawer, temporarily).

Make Space for Guests

Clear an area for guests to lay their bags and hang coats. If you have overnight guests, make sure they have a spot to hang wet towels and keep their toiletries.

Light Candles

If guests are expected any minute and you don't even have time to clear clutter, just light some candles and pour yourself a glass of wine. Candles instantly make your home feel put-together and mask any unpleasant odors.

Even if you only have a short window of time to straighten up, these actions will make a noticeable difference. Watch the video below for five more tips on cleaning up in a pinch.

9 Pre-Party Clean-Up Tips 01:00

Get your home party-ready in a snap with these tips for straightening up.

Now you're ready! Go forth, and host like the pro, last-minute entertainer you are.

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