You’ve drawn up the plans and you’ve poured the foundation… you’ve waited, you’ve dreamt, you’ve revised, and dreamt some more….what’s next??? Only the best part of being a new homeowner! It’s time to start thinking about the housewarming party!
Once your furniture is in place, and you’ve kicked up your feet, it will be time to share your dream home with friends and family. After all your hard work, here are some tips to keep it simple, so you can focus on laughing and loving in your new home:
- Invitations: It’s a good idea to give folks a little time to plan, generally 1-3 weeks. Send a map (hand-drawn for a personal touch!) with the date and a timeframe. Neighbors and casual acquaintances may just drop by for a short time within the hours you specify. Consider adding (+1) to your invitations, as single friends may want to bring a date or a buddy.
- Foods:Remember the pre-planning you did for the flow through your house? Whether you will plan a potluck or a catered soiree, enjoy your new layout and strategically place refreshments in several areas for your guests to congregate. For more time with your guests, think of easy and carefree finger foods-and don’t forget to label them for dietary restrictions. To avoid the constant “where-did-I-leave-my-drink” predicament, purchase tags for guest’s glasses at your local party store (or markers for disposable cups!).
- Seasonal Fun: For a fun treat, depending on the weather of course, try adding a touch of the outdoors. This clever “smores” idea can incorporate the kids (and the inner kid in us all!) and is a nice way to cap off the evening!
- Gift table: Guests may want to give a gift to bless your home, so set up a table in a discreet place, so as not to appear that the party is all about presents. Open gifts afterward, to allow time for mingling.
- Guest book: Place a book near your entry that guests can sign, and include a column for something unique to share (tips for homeownership, favorite feature of the neighborhood, funny story about your relationship…). Not only a (clever!) way to remember the names of your new neighbors, you can get their addresses for the all-important next step.
- Thank you cards: This often-overlooked step reminds your friends and family how important they are to you. Thank them for celebrating this important milestone with you. Cards can be as simple as a few sentences, and they can stick around on their kitchen counters for quite some time! Thank them for the ways they have enriched your lives, their willingness to show up and be happy for you, and their continued friendship. Thank them if they left a gift, but also thank them for their presence.
Your new home is a shelter and a refuge, a place for you to live life and make memories. May your housewarming party be a wonderful beginning to the life you will live in it.