A couple of kids recently moved into the neighborhood and they are great kids that my daughter is having a really good time with. Rules at their house are pretty lax - they can go all over the neighborhood (as far as three blocks) on their bikes and even visit other houses while mom doesn't actually know where they are at.
I am absolutely comfortable with having them at my house and with my daughter bicycling with these kids when I am in earshot, but as we are in a neighborhood where there have been wild dog attacks not too far away, I prefer that my daughter stay in view of the house and that she report to me whenever changing households (going inside) just so I know which house she is visiting.
My inclination is to do what I can to encourage the kids to play at our place and insist my safety rules be followed even if she does visit the other's houses. When she is visiting elsewhere though, how do I politely (to the other parents, I don't really care about being polite on this front with my daughter) insist on things like checking in with me say - before lunchtime, at 2:30ish and before dinner or before switching houses as well as staying within view of my house - there is also a third friend they all like to go "visit." (both parents live within a few blocks from here, but are separated so the other kids go back and forth quite a bit - all houses in question are in view of each-other except the father's house.)
A part of this question is also, how reasonable is it for me to expect my seven year old to be able to express what my rules are for her, remember them and follow them? The kids are all six, seven and eight (two eight year olds), mine is currently seven.
In the past, she hasn't been allowed to be on her own - usually I'm working on the garden, or in the garage (with the door open) and at least hearing things if not seeing them. I get concerned when things suddenly become quiet (which is why I insist she tell me before going inside to any of the other houses). However, she is starting to want to go visit the others at other times too (when I am inside) so I'm trying to figure out where to draw the line (the dog thing is truly of concern to me - a woman was killed here not long ago, I keep mace near always etc etc. but is not of concern to the other parents)