Traditionally, when a family finished building a new home, members of their community would come over with firewood and build fires in every fireplace to ensure that every room was properly warm before the family properly moved in. This came to be known as a housewarming party, and though the practice of lighting fires may have fallen away with introduction of central heating, the desire to celebrate a new home and new homeowners remains very much present in our culture.
Buying a home for the first time is more difficult than ever, with home prices soaring around the country and interest rates through the roof. Therefore, if you know someone who has managed to become a first-time homeowner, you should consider honoring them with a gift that will help them feel more comfortable and established. Because firewood might not be the most practical option nowadays, some other ideas for excellent housewarming gifts include:
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Every homeowner needs a set of tools to complete simple projects around the house, but lifelong renters with reliable maintenance services might not have bothered to accrue the essentials. Therefore, you might warm a new homeowner’s life with a set of high-quality hand tools, to include hammers, screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches and perhaps even saws. Though power tools might be more powerful, they are also more difficult to use and store, and they are much more expensive; you should allow homeowners to make their own power tool investments. However, a good set of hand tools will never go to waste.
Just because new homeowners might move in with a few bottles of cleaning solution leftover from their renting days doesn’t mean they have enough to get the old grime out of every corner of their property. You might gift your homeowners a subscription to high-quality, natural cleaning products, so they will always have refills to keep their counters and floors spotless.
Then again, if you or your friends are of the more spiritual sort, you might give a few herbs to burn for the removal of negative energies. Smudging with sage is a common practice, but other incense like cedar, yerba santa, rosemary and mugwort can be just as essential for creating good vibes in a new space.
Cabinet and Drawer Organizers
There is nothing less satisfying than opening a kitchen drawer to find all manner of utensils floating freely inside. In fact, every drawer and cabinet in a home can and should be neatly organized with the help of equipment like dividers, racks, shelves and the like. Many first-time homeowners don’t think to buy these essential organizational tools, so you can make their lives easier by supplying it as a housewarming gift. If you can, you should measure the exact dimensions of drawers and cabinets, or else you can supply a gift card to the Container Store, IKEA or some other organizational haven.
More and more homeowners are removing old, dirty carpets and replacing them with tile, laminate and other hard flooring that is more attractive and easier to care for. Yet, hard floors do have downsides; they don’t hide dirt and dust very well, and they can be uncomfortable to stand on for long periods. You might help solve this problem for your new homeowners by giving them a few floor mats to use in front of doors, in the kitchen or generally where they might need them. In addition to choosing mats that fit the homeowners’ aesthetic, you might opt for machine washable mats that are durable — and perhaps pet- and kid-friendly.
If you are afraid of overstepping with your housewarming gift, here’s an idea that is generous, practical and simple: tea towels. Kitchen towels get dirty fast, which means it is all but impossible to have too many; plus, tea towels tend to be small pops of décor in an otherwise functional space, so you can ensure that your gift has some personality alongside its usefulness. You should consider the homeowners’ aesthetic preferences when making your tea towel purchases, so the towels will integrate beautifully into their interior style.
Many new homeowners quickly become new furniture owners because their old furnishings are either too small or too shabby for their new lodgings. However, new furniture can look old and unfortunate fast if it is not properly cared for. Perhaps the simplest way to protect furniture from wear and tear are coasters, which collect condensation from drinks to prevent unsightly moisture stains. As with tea towels, one can never have too many coasters around the house, and coasters come in a great variety of styles, so you can find the right set to give your unique recipients.
New homeowners deserve to feel excited about their big purchase, and supplying them with some things they’ll need will help them settle comfortably into their new responsibility. Of course, if none of these sound like items your homeowners will enjoy, you can always offer a stack of firewood.