How to Choose the Best Housewarming Gift
When you get invited to a housewarming party, you can’t rock up there empty handed and just eat all the free food. If you want to be seen as a good friend or family member, you need to take some time and find an appropriate housewarming gift.
Selecting the perfect gift is a very personal endeavor. Sure, you can just randomly grab something at the supermarket, but there’s something special about taking time to select the perfect housewarming gift.
The following are a few tips to make that process a little bit easier.
Things to Keep in Mind When Selecting a Gift
When buying a gift for someone else, you must try to remove yourself from the equation. Just because you are an avid wine enthusiast, doesn’t mean the person you are buying a present for shares your passion.
Try to connect memories to the gift. If your friend can’t stop talking about gardening, you can’t go wrong with buying them a pot plant. If you really feel that you can’t find anything appropriate, buy a gift voucher at your local homeware store.
Consider the circumstances of the homeowner.
Selecting a gift for someone moving into their first home is a whole different story than someone who’s been a homeowner for years. If it’s someone getting their own place for the first time, then you could buy a practical gift such as a kitchen appliance or towels.
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes.
Do they like the outdoors? What are they passionate about? If you still feel completely clueless, try asking a few candid questions to gauge what the person might need for their new home.
A good way of thinking about a housewarming gift, is that you have the opportunity to buy something that the other person wouldn’t usually buy for themselves, but that would still be a useful addition to their home.
You don’t have to break the bank.
To use the cliché, it’s the thought that counts. The person will appreciate a thoughtful gift much more than a flashy, expensive gift. Sometimes a gift could even be priceless, create a little voucher book for offering babysitting or pet-sitting services free of charge.
People are more perceptive than you think, the person will sense the effort you put into finding the perfect gift. You could just grab something before the party at the local supermarket, but that almost seems more like a slap in the face.
It’s not just about the gift, it is about showing that you appreciate the person in your life and that you value them for who they are. Taking time out of your busy schedule to find the best housewarming gift will show that you care about them.
Ancient Housewarming Gifts
Should you be a big fan of keeping traditions alive, you could pick one of the following and enjoy the baffled expression on your friend’s face when you give them a very odd housewarming gift.
Christopher Columbus discovered the wonderful fruit when he landed on Guadalupe, the Caribbean island. After it became an established port, more and more seafarers just couldn’t resist taking a few pineapples home with them. Over the years it became a special symbol of hospitality.
Bread, Salt and Some Wine
Churches in Northwest Florida are big fans of this one. Each symbol has meaning. Bread – may the house never know hunger. Salt – may the lives in the house always have flavor. Wine – may joy and prosperity reign in the house forever.
This one was started in Germany. Ancient Norse legend sees the oak tree as the “tree of heaven.” The Norsemen saw the acorn as a protective symbol and placed them in the windowsills to ward off evil spirits. Now you know why the acorn shape is so popular on home decorations!
A practical gift with a bit of symbolism attached to it. In the olden days people believed that you could use a broom to sweep out all the bad spirits, to prepare your home for all the kids you will soon have in your new house.
Traditionally people would place a “burden basket” at their front doors, to invite their guests to leave their troubles outside. The symbolism behind it basically implies “leave your daily life worries and stresses outside so we can preserve the home’s harmony”.
Top 10 Best Housewarming Gifts
These are a few gift ideas you can’t go wrong with. But remember to still keep the person you are buying a present for in mind when making your choice.
1. A Cool Corkscrew
You can’t go wrong with a funky corkscrew. If you know that the person you are buying the gift for is a wine fan, throw in a bottle of their favorite wine as well. Want to be really fancy? Why not buy an electric corkscrew for a bit of luxury.
2. DIY Starter Kit
This one is perfect if the person you are buying the gift for is moving into their first home. You don’t have to be a DIY whiz, but everyone needs access to the basic tools. If you are compiling the kit, add the following: hammer, multi-bit screwdriver, measuring tape, nails and screws.
Is the person already a DIY guru? Then put together those little items one always need around the house: duct tape, Scotch tape, Command hooks, plastic baggies and any other household necessities you can think of that will be useful.
3. Something Smelling Nice
Did you know that traditionally candles used to symbolize the gift of light for someone’s new home? Scented candles are a great way to make a home smell clean and fresh. Or you could consider buying an aromatherapy diffuser.
4. A Cute Pot Plant
Another great traditional housewarming gift. You could try get a low maintenance plant, such as a cactus if you know the person you are buying the plant for isn’t a big plant fan. A plant livens up a place in a natural way. Want to be really practical? Buy a set of herbs for the kitchen.
5. A Brewing Basket
Most people enjoy relaxing or waking up with a cup of warm comfort. For a coffee or tea lover, you could create a little set with all the necessities. Gourmet coffee beans or speciality teas, sweeteners and creamers. Add a final personal touch with a fun mug or two.
DID YOU KNOW?
People used to interpret the term "housewarming" very literally, before central heating. If you were going to an ancient housewarming party, you wouldn’t have to worry so much about the gift. Back in the day, each guest would donate a bit of firewood, to keep all the fireplaces in the new home burning.
6. Something Personalized
Consider giving embroidered bathroom towels or an engraved wooden cutting board with a personalized monogram or maybe even a quote about home-life. Monogrammed bath towels are a very sophisticated gift to make your friend or family member feel special. If it’s for a family home, use their surname.
7. Board Games
Hosting a game night in your home is always fun. If the person you’re buying the gift for is moving into their very first home, the prospect will be even greater! Before deciding what game to buy, just make sure the person doesn’t have the game already (hint: ask “could I borrow your Pictionary for a dinner party I’m hosting next week?”)
8. Bath Goodies
Before deciding to pick this one, just make sure there is a bath in the person’s new home. This one is definitely a winner for a woman. Bubble bath, bath salts, scrub or body butter plus some nice body lotion will be a great pampering treat. You could try select a combo pack that’s packaged in a nice container, for an extra personal touch.
9. Dinnerware Set
A great gift for people who like hosting events at their home. Stick to plain white, as people’s taste differ vastly and with white the person can add different colors as table decoration. It’s always nice to have the plain everyday plates and the fancy ones for when you have guests over for a special occasion.
10. A Cool Home Gadget
If you want to really splurge on a nice fancy present, why not buy one of the latest home gadgets? These include a smart speaker, security camera, fancy light bulbs, voice control smart home hub, smart garage door opener and more. Tom’s Guide created a list of the best smart home gadgets currently available.
Bonus Gift Idea
A welcome mat is always a fun addition to any home. Stick with a simple design, unless you know the person’s taste very well.
Choosing the Best Housewarming Gift
In the end, you can’t go wrong with a gift from the heart. And remember to keep the person you are buying the present for in mind when choosing a housewarming gift. Also, keep little practical things in mind, such as the person’s tastes and for instance whether there’s a bath so that they can enjoy your lovely bath products basket.
About the author: This article was contributed by Nadia S, who is the Chief Author over at HomewareStuff.com. HomewareStuff.com is a blog that helps people make their house into a home by giving advice on choosing the right homeware for their needs, as well as general advice on home related topics.