Make that 5 relatively quick, inexpensive ways to make yourself feel right at home after a big move!
So you’ve made a big move to a new house -- the hard part is over, right? While moving is inarguably awful, it’s easy to overlook how tough the next phase can be. Settling in and turning that new house into a real home can be difficult. The good news is that there are ways to speed up the process -- and they aren’t too expensive or too difficult. Here’s where to get started.
Don’t Procrastinate on the Unpacking
You just packed and moved -- that’s a lot of work. It’s understandable that you would look at a pile of full boxes and think, “It can wait.” But that’s a mistake. You will not feel settled in with boxes lying around. Unpack your bedroom first, then move to the kitchen and bathroom. Apartment Therapy has a great tip: don’t set up your TV until you get the unpacking done.
If you’ve ever painted a room before, you know that this seemingly simple task can transform the feel of the space. Living in a home painted (or wallpapered) in someone else’s style will remind you that you’re sitting in a new (to you) home. If you choose the colors of your home, it will begin to feel like yours. If you’re unsure what you really want, check out this guide. And before making a purchase, be sure to shop sales on paint - the cost can add up quickly if you don’t.
Cost: Home size dependent, $100-$300
Decorate on the Cheap
If you already have a good amount of decorative items from your previous residence -- photos, artwork, mirrors, pillows, plants, candles, etc. -- make sure you get them put up in your new place ASAP. However, many of us don’t have that much -- especially if you’ve just moved into your first real place. Here’s a little secret: the costs of your decorative items have no bearing on whether they make your place feel more personalized. Cheaper will work.
Some good suggestions include using stackable storage units to make a side table or dresser ($20 or so), painting old lampshades, and hanging mirrors. You can always check out local second-hand stores and look out for ways to save online, but there are ways to save money beyond that -- like cashback opportunities at home improvement stores like Lowe's. Dollars spent turn into dollars saved on future projects.
Cost: under $100
Take a Weekend and Do a DIY Project
Nothing makes you bond with a new home more than putting your blood, sweat, and tears into sprucing it up with a home project. Online tutorials and modern tech are making it easier for anyone -- regardless of skill level -- to be a do-it-yourself hero. Don’t be afraid to try and fail. Be wary of projects that involve electricity, plumbing, or structural work, but apart from that, take a look at these projects you can start today.
Cost: under $100
Get a Pet
Pets can survive and thrive on just long walks, love, water, and food. They are “expensive” in terms of time committed, but not necessarily money. As long as you can keep your home clean and pet entertained, fed, and loved, you can make a house feel like a home with a new companion. It’s a lot of responsibility, but as Moving.com says that “there are few things that make a house feel more like a home than being greeted by someone who is immensely excited to see you when you walk through the front door.”
Cost: worth it
Moving to a new house brings with it infinite possibilities. Just by virtue of living there for a while, you’ll eventually begin to feel like it’s truly your home. But you can kickstart this process by making some easy, inexpensive moves toward settling in.
Photo by Nathan Fertig
Special thanks to my new friend Natalie Jones of Homeowner Bliss for sharing this great little piece. You'll find Natalie perfecting her nest in her new home with her husband, Jason. This gal is resourceful and has loads of great ideas on settling in quickly and beautifully. Thanks, Natalie for sharing with us. xo Mindy