Life is a special occasion

TOTW : Special Events At Home

Thinking of hosting a special celebration at your home? Why not? It's a great way to cut down on the cost. Or is it? A lot of my clients assume hosting a wedding at their parents house, or throwing a surprise 50th anniversary party at home is less expensive than an independent venue. However, an at home celebration can sometimes be a lot more expensive! Here are a few things that you should consider before sending out the invites:
  1. Parking
  2. House Capacity
  3. Bathrooms and Cleaning
  4. Rental Needs
  5. Electrical Capacity

Is there ample parking at your house? Probably not. Unless you have a super long driveway, your guests will have to park on your beautiful lawn and along the street you live on, which will probably upset your neighbors and a neighborhood association (if you have one). This may seem like a silly point until the night of your party when you have 50 to 100 people parking their cars.

In an effort to save your rep in the 'hood, invite your neighbors to attend the celebration. At least this way they won't be as ticked about the parking jam. They probably won't be upset about the late night noise either. But, if inviting your neighbors is not an option for your event, try dropping off some homemade cookies or a bottle of wine before the big night. Use the face-to-face time to make them aware of your event. Also, let them know just much you appreciate how understanding they will be! Remember, an army of cars will line the street the night of your event, and neighbors tend to be much easier going when they know the who, what, where, why and when in advance versus sitting in their living room and watching the event unfold live and guessing and stewing.

It is also wise to be proactive with your local police department. Give them a jingle and double check your town's noise ordinances and zoning laws. It would be a shame to have your big event cut short because of a 10 o'clock PM, or even worse, a 9 o'clock PM noise ordinance.

Depending on your budget, hiring valet is a great option. They will bring much needed organization and refuse the return of keys to guest who have had too much to drink. Note to the owner of the house, you will be held liable for irresponsible drinkers.

This is a five part posting. Check back next week for tips on Household Capacity.

Photo courtesy of Jason Walz on Real Simple

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