This is the time to buy a house, so the odds are, more than a few of your friends, family members, coworkers, and maybe even yourself will do it. Buyer demand has stayed strong, thanks to historically low mortgage rates that make homeownership more affordable than renting.* So, expect those housewarming invites to start rolling in.
Once they do, you’ll be prepared, with the help of this list, to give a thoughtfully distinct housewarming gift its recipient will be excited about using.
The top 14 housewarming gifts no one else is giving
Because a coaster set isn’t going to cut it. Try gifting one of these unique housewarming gifts to the new homeowner in your life instead:
1. Banana hats.
Silly as it seems, a banana-saving hat serves a very important purpose. It breaks the mold of fun housewarming gifts by doubling as a banana preserver and an accessory. Just slide a silicon cap on the crown of a bunch of bananas (preventing the release of ethylene gas that causes ripening), put a fuzzy hat on top to hide the cap, and you’ve got yourself some fashionably fresh bananas.
2. Bluetooth speaker.
Because of the pandemic, homeowners have placed even greater priority on alfresco entertaining and enjoying their outdoor spaces. Set the new homeowner in your life up for success with a convenient, portable outdoor speaker. Make sure its waterproof to provide protection from the elements.
3. Canned food organizer.
While it may not seem flashy at first glance, it’s undeniably handy. A canned food organizer is the kind of utilitarian gift your loved ones will be thanking you for later. Gift a stackable can organizer with a sixpack of sparkling water and a handful of tasty soups so the new homeowner will have something to snack on.
4. Custom art.
Custom art immediately touches the heart, especially when celebrating a couple’s or young family’s first house. Browse through Etsy to find the artist that catches your eye, and then commission a portrait or illustration of a family photo posted to Facebook. Note that custom art takes time and may need to be ordered several weeks in advance.
5. Decorative fire extinguisher.
Who knew these bad boys existed? For the sake of both safety and appeal, thank goodness they do. Safe T Fire Extinguishers are intended to be kept on display, making them easy to access while also making for a fun conversation starter. Popular designs include the classic tomato soup can, a whiskey label, Salvador Dali, Porsches, and a hemp wrap, among others.
6. Digital frame.
Step one: Make sure the new homeowner doesn’t have a digital frame yet. Step two: Buy them one and watch their ecstatic reaction as they open it. Everyone loves a digital frame, allowing for a seemingly endless display of photos and videos versus the single-use, “analog” picture frame. Uploading photos is relatively easy, even for those who consider themselves tech-challenged.
7. Funky serving platter.
Just like the food it’s presenting, a serving platter can be a work of art. Seek out one with a special message its recipient will appreciate. (Etsy, again, has a great variety of message platter options.) Or, look for a cool, stackable serving tray set that’s fun to use and will also take up minimal cabinet space.
When’s the right time to buy your first house? Market factors support buying now.
8. Gag candle.
If you don’t know, now you know: Trick candles are out there, and not just the kind that bring you joy at a birthday party because they’re impossible to blow out. These tricksters look like your everyday candle, but they come in much more diverse scents, such as potting soil, chlorine, ramen, and even vomit. Gift it to the new homeowner who can take a joke.
9. Lime tree and a bottle of tequila.
Just call this a deconstructed margarita. A small lime tree to adorn a windowsill isn’t only great to look at — it can also be used to make a mean marg when the limes are in season. Fun fact: Lime trees are fairly easy to care for, provided that they get plenty of direct sunlight, making them a popular, user-friendly housewarming gift.
10. Personalized glasses.
A new homeowner is likely to need dinnerware, glasses, and cutlery, and personalization adds a thoughtful element to what might otherwise be typical housewarming gifts. Level up your average wine glasses with a custom painting of a friend’s new home, or stay traditional with monogrammed napkins, napkin rings, or plates. (Just make sure your friend doesn’t already have a full dinner set.)
11. Power outage kit.
Make your own DIY blackout kit or buy one premade online. Either way, you can count on the fact that this is a gift that any new homeowner will appreciate the first time the lights flicker. Include a lighter, candles, a flashlight, extra batteries, hand sanitizer, first aid items like Band-Aids and medications, a multi-purpose tool, and bottled water. All that’s left is to put a bow on it.
12. Subscription box.
These days, there are subscription boxes for everything. So, think of what makes your loved one tick — and what could make their transition into homeownership easier — and sign them up for a subscription. Popular options include subscription boxes for cleaning, cooking (in the form of a meal kit), comfort foods, spices, coffee, wine, pet treats, candles, and air/refrigerator filters.
13. The Personal Popper.
An incredibly easy-to-use personal air popper that produces movie-theater-quality popcorn in the comfort of your own home? Dreams do come true. Gift this personal popcorn bowl with the kernels of your choice and a plush blanket. Throw in a Netflix or Hulu gift card for extra credit.
14. Yard game.
Remember how homeowners are getting more use out of their outdoor spaces? Give them something fun to do while they’re relaxing on the deck or entertaining. When it comes to housewarming gifts, jumbo Jenga is always a crowd-pleaser. Other yard game favorites include giant wooden dice (for Yahtzee), cornhole, lawn bowling, and bocce ball.
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*“Home Ownership More Affordable Than Renting in Majority of U.S. Housing Markets.” ATTOM, 2022.
For educational purposes only. Please contact your qualified professional for specific guidance.
Sources are deemed reliable but not guaranteed.