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Why We Take Off Our Shoes In Our House

My family rule is that you take off your shoes before coming into the house. Leave them in the garage, at the front door, or even on the shoe rack.  This goes for guests and even people working on the house. No shoes inside the house.

I grew up farming and muddy boots were always shed at the door. So, I never thought twice about the rule of no shoes in the house until I’ve seen recent debates about wearing shoes indoors. But in my house, you take your shoes off at the door no matter the season or the occasion.

I’m not saying my floors are perfect, I have dogs and it’s a farmhouse in the country.  But we make a big effort to keep the outside filth where it belongs.  We have mats by every door and a place to take off your shoes comfortably.  But here are a few reasons WHY you should leave your shoes at the door


Please take your shoes off before coming inside the house.

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Shoes Are Dirty

Did you know that the average shoe sole is covered with hundreds of thousands of units of bacteria that can be transferred right to your floors? From mud to feces, shoes are dirty and by simply removing them at the door, you keep that from landing on your floors and transferring to furniture and beds too!

Viruses Can Be Tracked In On Your Shoes

Did you know that your shoes can carry viruses? Throughout the day, shoes pick up germs and viruses everywhere from public bathrooms to hospital floors.  These little hitchhikers then catch a ride back home with you and can then be deposited onto your clean floors!

Be A Kind Guest

While my family knows to take off their shoes at the door, I’m often asked by guests if they should remove theirs as well.  And while it might be awkward to ask your guest to remove their shoes, it is common in most other countries to go shoeless indoors.

Tips For Keeping Toes Warm

When we have friends and family over, we expect our guests to take off their shoes. And often I have a basket of new socks for anyone who would like to keep their toes warm.  We have hardwood floors and I get that those floors and be a little chilly. So, think ahead and be prepared to give your guests a little comfort in exchange for removing their shoes.

How To Ask Your Guest To Remove Their Shoes

When we were in Seattle, we had a rainboot mat just outside the door.  It’s common to look at the porches in Seattle and see house after house with rain boots by the door.  But in other less damp areas, it might be a little harder to figure out the house rule on shoes.

You could make a cute little sign above a shoe area inside the door asking guests politely to leave their shoes and worries at the door.  But usually greeting your guests, without your shoes, is a subtle sign that shoes shouldn’t be brought past this point.

Do you wear shoes in your home?  Why or why not?  We want to hear your thoughts in the comments below. 

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