You’ve successfully completed the home-buying process. Now it’s time to navigate some tricky etiquette rules centered around being a new homeowner. For instance, how to pull off a housewarming party without everyone thinking you’re just seeking gifts. To help, Realtor.com consulted a few etiquette experts to find out what is, and isn’t, considered appropriate when it comes to celebrating this huge life achievement.
Who throws a housewarming party?
Many people think that a housewarming party is thrown for the new homeowner by others, like a bridal or baby shower. According to etiquette experts, it’s fine for the new homeowners to throw their own housewarming party. In fact, inviting friends, neighbors and family over to check out your place not only is acceptable, but it’s expected.
Is it rude to ask for housewarming gifts?
Asking for gifts for your new home is considered impolite, even if you just spent a lot of money on the house and would love to have some help filling it with the essentials. Throw yourself a housewarming party in good faith, but don’t hope for—or hint at—gifts you need to finish getting the place in order. That means you definitely shouldn’t put a link to your gift registry on the invite. If guests insist on some ideas of what to bring, maintain a no-gifts stance to sidestep any mixed messages about the party’s intent. Most guests likely will show up with something—like a bottle of wine or a potted fern—which you should accept graciously. Just avoid suggesting specific ways your friends and family can spend their money on your new home.
How do you gracefully host a housewarming party?
Still feel a little weird about navigating the whole gift-receiving/hosting thing? Enlist a close friend to help with logistics and greeting guests at the door. If not handled carefully, a self-hosted housewarming can come off as drinking a toast to yourself. Have the friend who is hosting the affair accept gifts at the door or indicate to the arriving guests where to place them. Keep in mind that it’s all about hospitality and making others feel welcome. Toward that end, mix up a special signature cocktail named with a nod to some feature of your home (Red Door Rum Runner, anyone?), offer tours of the house and maybe even send guests on their way with a cute parting gift or favor like a specialty cookie decorated with your address.