You live in Florida. Know what that means?

Visitors.

If you’ve just moved to Florida or are planning to, be sure the new custom home you’ll build with us is equipped with at least one guest room and handy guest bathroom.

You probably have extended family members and friends who can’t wait until you move, so they can visit you and enjoy the nearest beach, Florida attractions and balmy weather. And yes, plan for that guest room to get a regular workout.

Never had a guest room? Read on for helpful hints on how to keep yours prepared year-round.

It can’t be the junk room

That extra bedroom shouldn’t look like a rental storage space.

When your guest arrive, they won’t want to step over boxes of stuff, have nowhere to sit down or find the closet so jammed, they can’t squeeze in a suitcase.

It’s perfectly okay for your new guest room to pull double duty when it’s not hosting guests, Just limit the functions — a craft room or a home office — and figure out an efficient storage system so that cleanup is quick and easy when guest are en route.

Use versatile furniture

This is key if your guest bedroom serves more than one purpose.

Try a table that can fold up out of the way, or a more solid piece of furniture that can double as a place for guests to place their belongings. It also can serve as a storage base for fresh bath towels, books, a small coffeemaker and/or a television.

Bedding-wise, consider a day bed, which is compact and functions as a twin bed and a sofa.

Even if you use an office chair, tuck another small armchair and ottoman in the room. It’s more comfortable seating for guests who may simply want to lounge at night and watch TV.

Provide all the comforts of home

Guests are in your home, but they may not want to admit they can’t find soap for the shower.

To prevent omissions like this, think about hotels where you’ve stayed. Basic toiletries and clean, fresh bath linens are always welcome. Extra blankets, pillows and decorative throws help guests fine-tune their own comfort level.

Closet space and plenty of hangers allow them to unpack. It’s also nice to have a fabric-lined bin or two on hand for small items such as socks and T-shirts, especially if your guest room doubles as a home office and contains no chest of drawers.

And good lighting! Mix an overhead light (preferably attached to a ceiling fan) with targeted task lighting. No one wants to strain to read, or try to figure out if that’s a gray or black shirt.

Don’t forget the bathroom

If your guest room isn’t a self-contained suite that includes a bathroom, there’s likely one nearby. Make sure your guests know it’s theirs to use and outfit it as such.

Again, plenty of toiletries and towels are important. So are toilet paper supplies. And a small plug-in night light makes those overnight pit stops a bit safer.

Ready for your new custom Florida home? Start the conversation here. opens in a new window