You have exactly three hours, 20 minutes and eight seconds to choose a gift. Even worse, you have a very strict budget that eliminates most of the fancy, high-tech gifts in the store. Your good friend and her husband have just purchased their new digs, and in a couple of hours, they will host a housewarming celebration. All week long, you have been scratching your head trying to figure out what to purchase. As you stroll down the aisles of ACME Home and Garden department store, you actually consider showing up empty-handed – major faux pas. In this day and age, would-be gift givers have plenty of options when giving gifts to new homeowners.

New homeowners might receive gifts from family and friends for a variety of reasons. Granted, not everybody can afford to spend oodles on appliances and technology for a gift that homeowners might or might not use, or even appreciate. However, the importance of giving a present to new homeowners is not related to the cost of the item but to celebrating this milestone with the homeowner. Another reason friends and family give gifts is to help new homeowners – homeowners who have already spent a good chunk of money – defray the cost of needed items such as appliances and home and garden tools.

When buying a gift for a new homeowner, gift givers have many options. Gift givers can draw from the homeowner’s life for inspiration. For example, if a friend is a novice wine taster, give her a six-month trial subscription to a wine club, and for those on a budget, a carafe or a wine-tasting kit would also suffice. In fact, would-be gift givers can draw from a variety of sources for inspiration.

For those homeowners who love to cook and eat, give the person an apron, monogrammed if possible. Another good gift choice is a recipe book that contains the homeowners’ favorite type of food; for example, Italian food, Mexican food, soul food, Chinese food and vegan food cookbooks are great ideas. Purchasing cookware is also a good idea for novice chefs. For instance, purchase a small grilling pan for someone who likes to grill, but not on an outside grill, or a rice cooker, to avoid uncooked rice. Food items such as specialty hot chocolate, wine, cheese and crackers, tea and flavored coffee can also be inexpensive gift items.

For those homeowners who like to spend time in the yard, gift givers have numerous gift ideas from which to choose. Lawnmowers, edgers, planters and garden hoses are common gifts. Gift givers do not have to go to into the poor house, though, to give to those with a green thumb. In fact, potted trees and flowers that can be transferred into a garden are inexpensive gift ideas. Other gift ideas for those gardeners include a gift bag that contains small packets of both flower and vegetable seed kits, in addition to directions on how to grow these plants.

For those homeowners who are all-around homemakers, candles, potpourri and incense and their burners are all excellent gift ideas. In addition to these aromatic gifts, collages, framed pictures and art can also be given to someone who likes to decorate their home. Pricier gifts can include area rugs and glass vases. For those homemakers who despise yard work, gift givers can arrange for a gardener to mow the lawn for a month. Furthermore, those would-be handy men or women would appreciate a set of tools.

For those homeowners who are tech-savvy and need the latest and greatest gadgets, consider purchasing a traveling doorbell that lets the homeowners take it to wherever they are in the home. Another techie gift can be a smartphone-friendly garage door opener or even smart bulbs that can be controlled from a smartphone.

Those gift givers on a tight budget can purchase small gift items such as key chains that hold the house keys, cutting boards for the kitchen, measuring cups, a nice table cloth, and martini shakers and glasses, in addition to a plethora of items under 20 dollars.

If all else fails and the new homeowners are fussy beyond measure, purchasing a gift card to a favorite department store and enclosing it in a beautiful card, hand-made or not, so they can choose a gift, is also acceptable. The point in purchasing a gift is to let the homeowner know that their milestone of purchasing a home is being celebrated. Furthermore, for every visit to the home, the gift giver sees their contribution to their friend’s home.


Cheryl Posner is the owner of Winey Mommy. Of course, she loves wine, her family, and writing about it all (in no certain order).

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