Fun & Functional: Gift ideas for new homeowners

Gifts for new homeowners often fall into two categories: things they’d like, and things they need. It’s not unusual for people to move in with a slew of hand-me-down objects for cleaning and tools for light handiwork, which can simplify your gift-giving decision. But it’s a good bet they’ll find plenty of items they need to keep up with the demands of housework and home maintenance. Sometimes, a good plunger is worth its weight in artisanal chocolates.

If you’re buying something for a new homeowner, don’t just opt for the obligatory framed print or door wreath. There are some very practical and useful products out there, many of them featuring new technologies that make cleaning and fixing things a whole lot easier. A day will come when your friends thank you for your housewarming gift, even if it isn’t as sexy as a Zero Spy camera or a thermal imaging app for your phone.

Clean and clicking

  • You recall what happens when the lights go out: no one can find the flashlight. Help your friends stay prepared for the next power outage with a Cat brand CT6515 rechargeable utility light and camping lantern. It has a 200 meter beam distance and a 12-hour operation time (on low setting).
  • How about a portable doorbell? You can take the Honeywell Wireless doorbell with you, literally. It can be removed from its wall mount and carried into the backyard or toolshed so you don’t miss anyone who comes for a visit.
  • Do your friends have a dog or cat? If so, they could have trouble acclimating their pet to its new surroundings. That can lead to some inadvertent urinating on the new carpeting. The automated Bissell SpotBot uses a rotary brush and spray component to clean even the heaviest stain. Best of all, you can walk away while it does its work.
  • Sometimes new homeowners don’t care for the shower head attachments they inherit, either because they’re not removable or because they aren’t aesthetically pleasing. The Moen Magnetix handheld shower checks both boxes. It magnetically attaches to the shower arm and has multiple spray options.
  • Why not give the gift of you? Offer to help your friends rearrange furniture and heavy appliances, or stand in for them if they’re expecting home delivery on a new item.

Just for fun

If you’re feeling a little guilty about giving a gift that seems like it’s all work and no fun, consider adding something that has a touch of whimsy and a dash of frivolity. Every housewarming holiday gift should have an element of fun.

  • Try a set of wine labels (4 to a set) that celebrates your friends’ new home. Each label is adhesive and features sayings that commemorate the occasion and congratulate the happy couple.
  • An Etna sofa side table is a cool yet functional with a base that slides under your couch and extends up to the seat. Its table surface is big enough to hold your TV remote, a drink, a magazine and more.
  • If a house-shaped garlic keeper isn’t fun and whimsical, nothing is. Its roof provides venting and can hold a whole lot of garlic if you’re into cooking dishes with a little kick.
  • What new home would be complete without a welcome mat? It’s a great way to give a useful gift that you can personalize and have a little fun with, too. has other great gift ideas for the homeowner

There’s no right or wrong when you’re choosing a housewarming gift (or gifts). Picking the right one just takes a little imagination, a sense of fun and a knowledge of the proud new homeowners’ likes and dislikes.

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