Proper Etiquette for Stopping by a Friend's House

Make sure to follow your friend's house rules.
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Whether it's to cheer her up after a rough day or to drop something off, you may want to stop by your friend's house for a brief moment. Remember to follow proper etiquette and mind your manners at her home. She'll think of you as a courteous and polite visitor and won't mind if you stop by again.

1 Give a Buzz

Calling ahead will prevent you from stopping by a friend's house at an inappropriate time. Ask him if he wouldn't mind having your company today and what time is best for you to drop in. You don't want to visit him during a busy hour, such as when he is eating dinner with his family. He'll also appreciate the time to prepare his bedroom, or his home if he lives alone, for your visit. If you don't give him notice, you may risk him not being home when you arrive or completely ignoring your knock at the door.

2 At the Doorsteps

When you arrive at the front door, ring the door bell once and wait for your friend to come. If she's aware of your visit, she'll likely be there right away to open the door. You may also want to ring again after several seconds just in case she didn't hear it the first time. If she steps outside the door when she opens it, she probably only has a few minutes to chat with you and can't invite you inside at the moment. However, if she beckons for you to come in, remember to take off your hat and leave a wet umbrella in a rack or outside before entering.

3 Inside Your Friend's Home

Once inside his home, remember to mind your manners. If this is the first time you're visiting his house, compliment his family's decorating skills but don't express your feelings about anything you find distasteful. Never go off on your own, as you don't want to impose on his turf, and politely ask to use the bathroom or phone if you need to. Follow any house rules, such as taking your shoes off at the door, even if you don't agree with them. Don't ask for any food -- wait for him to offer you something to drink or eat. Always respect his furniture by not putting your feet up on the tables and by placing drinks on coasters.

4 Come Bearing Gifts

Giving a small gift to the friend whose home you visit is a nice gesture. Your reason for stopping by will ultimately determine the type of gift you give. If you're just dropping in to see her new place, bring her a bottle of sparkling apple cider or a bouquet of flowers. For a friend who is sick, prepare a pot of homemade soup to help her get well soon. An inspirational book will be an ideal choice if your dropping in to cheer her up after a bad day at work or school.

Wannikki Taylor is a professional writer with a Bachelors of Arts in journalism from Temple University. She serves as a children's columnist and covers family entertainment for several print and online publications. She specializes in games, crafts and party planning ideas for kids and their families.