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It's maybe been a while since you've hosted friends and family. Brush up on your hosting skills by avoiding these mistakes.

With the holiday season just around the corner, you can expect the number of holiday parties and get-togethers to increase. Thinking of hosting your own party? Having people over can be a lot of fun, but it also requires some thought and planning to pull it off well. Here are a few mistakes our real estate agents say to avoid making.

  • Asking guests to remove their shoes.
    Many families remove their shoes at home to cut down on flooring damage caused by dirt and excessive wear. During a holiday party, however, everyone dresses up, and shoes are a part of that tradition. For just this one night, drop the rule and don't worry about people's shoes. The exception, of course, is when removing shoes is a cultural thing, and your guests will have the same expectation.

  • Forgetting introductions.
    If you're hosting a large party, introductions may be difficult to stay on top of, but for most household parties you should expect to make introductions as people arrive or as you circulate around the room. This gives your guests an opening to start a conversation and get to know one another.

  • Not planning music.
    Music is part of what brings a party to life. A party with no music tends to feel awkward and strained, while music can help to soften those awkward moments and set the tone for your party. Plan your playlists ahead of time and set up your music to play throughout the party with little to no interaction from you.

  • Confining yourself to the kitchen.
    Avoid planning complicated food and drinks that will keep you in the kitchen too much of the night, and away from your guests. Instead, opt for easy or catered foods so that you don't have to do a lot of prep work to get it all ready. Mix drinks in batches and have pitchers of mixed drinks prepped and ready to go as the night goes on.

  • Making food and drink hard to find.
    Often at holiday parties, hosts will provide a self-serve buffet of food and drink. This is great, as long as it's easy to find! Avoid the temptation to set a single food and drink station up in the kitchen, away from the rest of the party. Instead, set up smaller stations throughout the areas of the house where the party will be held, so guests can easily see their food and drink options wherever they are.

  • Letting guests mix their own drinks.
    While some self-service drinks are a good idea, preventing you from needing to circulate and take orders all night long, you don't necessarily want people mixing their own drinks. Letting people mix their own is likely to get messy and may result in a lot of abandoned, undrinkable drinks. Instead, mix large batches of drinks ahead of time and have them in pitchers in the fridge, ready to go.

  • Only providing alcoholic drinks.
    Whether or not you have anyone underage at your party, it's always a good idea to provide some non-alcoholic drink options, like sparkling water and soft drinks. Some people don't drink, for one thing, and ensuring you have something for them is the polite way to host. Besides, even your guests who do enjoy the alcoholic drinks may want to hydrate between drinks or to pace themselves.

Hosting a holiday party can be a lot of work, but also a lot of fun. If you're ready to upgrade to a home that's better for entertaining, contact us today, and we'll help you start your search for South Bend homes for sale.

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