When we brought out a large amount of freight from the UK last October, we wondered what we would do with it all as we already had furniture for the house we were renting in Cyprus. But although we did throw out/give away vast amounts of stuff, we still brought rather a lot, and it felt right to do so.
When we found the house we eventually bought here, with a guest flat as well as a three-bedroom house, we realised where the extra stuff would go. And sure enough, although we've had to buy a few extra things, we found that it did all work out very well, giving us - effectively - two fully-furnished houses.
We did wonder how much the guest flat would be used. Shortly after we bought the house, friends and relatives asked to come and stay, but the first ones were booked for February half-term next year. As described before, we had to put the guest flat into unexpected use at the end of July, with an Australian refugee from Lebanon; then a work colleague of Richard's stayed overnight when he couldn't find a hotel, and our Australian friend returned for a further week before flying back to Lebanon at the end of August.
Last week some friends from the UK stayed there for a week, on a last-minute break booked only ten days in advance, and tomorrow we're having yet more people staying - a family with four children, who are taking a few days' break from the country where they usually work. Hotels are almost impossible to find at the last minute - our friends couldn't book one, so I should think it's impossible for a family of six - so they're going to stay here from tomorrow evening until Sunday.
It works out very well - people can be entirely independent if they wish, or (when it's friends or relatives staying) we're just up the outside stairs, so we can spend time together and have shared meals. I feel much more relaxed about people staying there, in general, than I ever did about having folk staying in our other house, where we tended to trip over each other somewhat. And since people stayed last week, the guest flat is tidy and clean, so all I had to do to prepare for tomorrow was a quick dust and mop, and make up beds. There are basic supplies (tea, coffee, sugar etc) in the guest flat, and they'll be bringing or buying their own food.
It all works out so much more neatly than I could ever have imagined!