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SHARING: House rules poster template

Hey, y’all: I’ve gotten a TON out of this forum in a very short time – thank you all!

It occurred to me that I could share an editable template of our house rules poster for others to adapt for their own use. You’ll need a (free) Canva account, but otherwise can revise, tweak, etc. to your hearts’ content. Hope it’s useful!

Link here: Copy of Guide Cottage


A poster? Umm, no thanks.

We have around three or fours house rules, and they’re essentially just common sense.

They’d look a bit lost on anything other than A5/6!



Cool! Happy that you don’t need it; hope it’s useful to people who want something to frame and hang as a gentle reminder.


I have a question, why is it called Guide Cottage?

I also don’t need a poster but yours looks cool and obviously doesn’t have too many rules.

We’re just off a street called the Guide Meridian, which used to be the primary north-south route from Seattle to the Canadian border. Actually, from our guide book:

“You’ll find yourself in a freshly renovated, 700-square-foot haven in the heart of Bellingham’s Fountain District, an urban village filled with restaurants, taprooms, grocery options and parks. The neighborhood is built around the Guide Meridian, the north-south route for which the cottage was named and which was the primary road to Canada for much of Bellingham’s history.”

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It’s a nice layout, but I have a visceral anti-authoritarian reaction to a list of “rules” posted on the wall, and I may attract guests of similar bent.

The Guest Agreement is in hard copy in my welcome book, and I’ll continue to be the (tasteful, good-humored) laminated sign queen for things I want to emphasize, like the little thermometer picture by the thermostat.

To every host to their own.


Ha! I also have that streak but, as a guest who’s packing and usually in a last-day rush, I also hate having to flip through the house guide for checkout procedures. So, you know, figured I’d cover it in both places – little tastefully framed tl;dr version for the folks who don’t like to read everything, thorough deep dive in the handbook for the folks who do.


Thanks for sharing. I run an info. Tv with optisigns so my rules get scrolled over and over during their stay and guests will still ask me “should we strip the beds” :roll_eyes: its also posted in my welcome book. They just don’t read!

We have one little note, a kraft tag tied to the handle of the microwave: please note that some of the mugs and dishes have gold (metal) decoration and should not be used in the microwave. (or something like that). It happended once in the first month of hosting but never again, not sure if it’s the note or not.

My main 2 house rules relate to stuff prior to booking (dogs and vehicles), so I wouldn’t need to post them anywhere in the apts.

I have a couple notes about check-out in the house manual. I say please don’t bother stripping the bed. I know that guests sometimes read it while they are preparing to leave because every once in awhile I can tell that they started to strip the bed and then stopped or pulled the sheets back up. I added a note maybe a year ago, to not gather the towels but to just leave them hanging to dry and that has worked, no piles of sour towels.

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Very nice design! Thanks for sharing!

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My pleasure! Hope it’s helpful. :slight_smile:

Yes, I was able to make my changes and even scale it and print it out on an 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper. I think it’s cute and can be a nice accompaniment to our “covid check-out” rules.


@GuideCottage What I like about your poster is the way you have used graphic images and different fonts to make it easy to focus on each thing and draw attention to it. A little picture of a car next to the parking info will draw the guest’s attention to it, much more likely than if the info is just a bunch of text guests have to plow through.

I don’t need to post info like that or have a house manual, since I homeshare, but if I had an entire place listing, I would do something similar.


Wow, thank you! (I’m a teacher so … yeah. Very accustomed to having to get people’s attention on the instructions I need them to know.)

As a teacher, you’ll probably like this- when one of my daughters was in Grade 5, she got to go to a special class one day a week which was for kids who had been identified as gifted and/or talented. It was called the Challenge Program, and they pulled a few kids in Grade 5 and 6 from all the schools in the district, who then didn’t go to their regular school on Fridays, but to this classroom in one of the schools.

On the parent-teacher night, the teacher was telling us some of the things they did with the kids, and one was a listening exercise, although the kids weren’t told that’s what it was until afterwards. The teacher said that many gifted children are poor listeners- they are so used to “getting it” before the rest of their peers do, that they think they already know what others are going to say, or how to do things, and tune out.

So she would tell them to get out a sheet of paper and print their name on the upper left hand side. Before she had even finished the sentence, most of them had written, not printed, their name on the upper right side, because that’s how they were normally used to doing it in the regular classroom.

She would then carry on in the same vein, giving instructions that were contrary to the way they were used to being asked to do things. Almost all the kids failed that little exercise (although there were no grades given in that class).

Sometimes the brightest people are the ones who pay the least amount of attention. They think they don’t require instruction, they already “know”.


Not sure what you ask them but we would rather they do not - one of the many nice tidbits we learned here - so we can easily know if we need to pre-treat stains before laundry. So, we are of the “thanks for choosing us, please just leave the bedding and we’ll take care of it” camp.


I never really “got” the “don’t strip your beds” thing from the host perspective until I stayed at a LOVELY VRBO. The hosts left a note that specifically said, “Please don’t strip the beds! We want to inspect sheets for signs of wear so we can replace them.”

Obviously that’s hosting common sense, but as someone who was raised to clean up my mess as a guest and leave “invisibly,” that’s what finally clicked for me – ohhhh, I’m NOT doing them a favor!

But I’m a big fan of explaining things, anyway.

What a useful exercise. I think most of us could use it at some point in our lives! (Or many points, sigh.)

That sounds so much more pleasant than “I want to inspect them for types of stains you left so I can pre-treat them and to use my lint roller on all the pubic hairs you left behind before I put them in the washing machine.”


If you’re not IB message them before confirming booking, with whatever and ask them to confirm they are happy to abide by your house rules. Works for us.

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