I always find this an interesting topic, because most events in life, such as graduations, marriage, or the birth of a child, all sort of hover around the same gift idea. Which is to say, if there isn’t a registry attached to the event, most people just write a check and call it a day.
While I’m sure the recent homeowner in your life isn’t going to kick you out for writing them a check, I’ve always felt these kinds of moments should be both personal and practical.
Take this for example. When I moved into an apartment years ago, a friend of mine gifted me a plunger, a toilet brush, and a bunch of cleaning supplies. And you know what? It was the perfect gift. You get so caught up in the bigger items like appliances, furniture, and dinnerware, that you often look past the things you’ll need when you need them most.
Don’t have a plate to eat off of? You can improvise. But if you don’t have a drain cleaner, a plunger, or a mop when you need it? Better toss on your shoes, grab your car keys, and head out to the store. Note: This will probably always happen when you least want it to, at the most inconvenient time.
Some other fun and personal gift ideas include kitchen towels (try and go with a neutral color, void of aggressive patterns), toothbrush holders, a bucket (I know it sounds funny, but it’s going to get used for something. I swear), and serving trays.
If you want to take the gift card route, consider Home Depot for all those upcoming projects, Home Goods for the cosmetic side, or even a gift card to the local grocery store to help them stock up the fridge all over again.
We also can’t talk about gift ideas without talking about the ones I suggest you avoid, too. Things like generic artwork/prints may seem like a good idea, but once they get settled in the new homeowner will want to personalize those kinds of things. The same goes for area rugs, and even dish sets, both of which enter into the area of taste and preference. However, if you know the homeowner well enough to think, “They’ll love this,” then go for it.
Most of all, have fun with it.