How to politely ask guests to remove their shoes at your house

shoes left outside of door

Enforcing a “no shoes” policy at home helps keep out dust and allergens. It also protects your floors from dirt and debris, allowing you to go longer between cleans. But how do you encourage guests who pop over on a whim or come over for dinner to remove their shoes without sounding like a stickler?

Shoe removal is common in some countries, such as Asia, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. Keeping them on can be a sign of disrespect.

Different shoes on shelf near wall

Is it rude to ask guests to remove their shoes upon arrival? We don’t think so as long as you follow a few simple steps when asking. This way you can still make people feel welcome while setting a “no shoes” boundary.

Ask Nicely

Requesting guests to remove their shoes is best when done directly upon entering. It might take a little practice getting used to it, but we suggest you keep it simple by saying, ‘Would you mind if you removed your shoes before you came in?’ or ‘I’d prefer if you went shoeless, thank you.’

Most of the time it will be a non-issue, but if anyone balks, simply explain your reasoning by saying it’s better for your allergies or it’s been very muddy out, etc.

Best Senior Shoes For Women
Getty Images | Sean Gallup

Be Prepared

Not only should guests have a place to sit when they remove their footwear, but it’s also nice to have a few extra pairs of socks or slippers nearby for added comfort. Clear a designated spot for people to place their shoes so no one trips over anything.

Having a few pairs of house shoes or a few pairs of socks can help soften the request. It’s also a good idea to have guests slip-on socks if they borrow any house shoes while they’re at it. House shoes have grown in popularity since the pandemic. They offer more support than traditional slippers, thanks to their durable, non-slip soles.

Give Notice

When it comes to hosting larger events, if you want guests to remove their shoes, it’s best to give some advanced warning. This way, people can plan their outfits around the idea. Some guests may decide to bring along a pair of slippers or socks, and some women may choose to wear different hosiery. This means at the bottom of the invitation, you might want to add something like ‘Please plan on removing your shoes once inside.’

It really boils down to what you and your family feel most comfortable with. If you don’t mind people wearing shoes but your spouse can’t stand picking up the little pieces of leaves that inevitably get tracked in, it might make sense to set a blanket rule for guests.

It’s your house, after all, so it’s perfectly fine to set boundaries. Now if only we could train our dogs to wipe their muddy paws before entering, we’d be all set!

, , ,

Related posts

writing in journal
Why you should make tomorrow's to-do list before you go to bed
5 kids smile at the camera with their heads together
This is the rarest hair and eye color combination
Boats anchor at the sand bar in Torch Lake
This lake in Michigan seriously looks like the Caribbean Sea
A spray bottle sits in front of a plant.
These DIY all natural pesticides will keep bugs out of your house

About the Author
Emily OBrien
Emily O'Brien is a freelance writer based out of Raleigh, North Carolina. In addition to Simplemost, she also writes for Don't Waste Your Money and loves to shine the spotlight on products worth buying.

From our partners