31 May

How To Make a New House Feel Like Home

I recently moved to a new place, and when all of my things were in boxes, the rooms in my house mimicked how I felt: empty. When the physical remnants of your life and memories are packed away, a place that once felt so personal is just a bunch of bare wall space. Kinda sad, isn’t it?


Fortunately, the following quick fixes make it easy to liven things up and make a new place feel like it’s always been yours (or even help your current living space feel extra homey!)

1. Get out those rubber gloves and clean

This sounds kind of common sense, right? Even if your place has already been cleaned pre move-in, the fresh smell of citrus or lavender that’s in so many cleaners helps liven up a new place and get rid of that cardboard box smell that often permeates the air when you move and drag along 30+ boxes with you.

Green Works by Clorox cleans great, smells fab, and is eco-friendly without harsh chemical fumes.

2. Make your bed

Get your sleep space set up on the first day of your move. It’ll give you some sense of normalcy even if everything around you is an unkempt disaster. And, if any of your bedding has been in storage, wash it if you can. No one wants to sleep surrounded by the smell of a box or mothballs, do they?

3. Organize that closet

I can’t tell you how much I scrambled around before work last week trying to find my umbrella! I was so overwhelmed by my lack of closet space that I let everything lay scattered on my floor for a week. Take it from me, it’s worth sucking it up and organizing your closet. You’ll feel like you’re at home when everything has its rightful place.

Check out great organizational solutions at The Container Store. Their closet experts can make the most hopeless closet space functional.

4. Stock your pantry

On our second “move” day, we made a Trader Joe’s run. Even though the lure and ease of a ton of restaurants in our neighborhood was tempting, there’s something about having a stocked fridge and pantry that just feels homey and comforting. Plus, we were able to cook dinner, which warmed the flat with some yummy scents.

5. Unpack some books, pictures, and knick-knacks

Nothing gives life to an empty room like your personal belongings and snapshots of the people you love.

6. But, if you don’t unpack anything else at first, set up your kitchen

Even if you’re not a huge cook, chances are you’re going to want a glass of water (or wine) or something to store your leftovers in. Plus, if you like to eat breakfast and/or bring your lunch to work, it’ll make things easier and save money you’d otherwise spend at eateries.

7. Plug it in and light it up

Back to scents: smells are the biggest memory triggers and can also release feel-good endorphins. So grab some wall plug-ins and candles in scents that make you feel warm and fuzzy. Maybe it’s spicy cinnamon that reminds you of fall or a beachy scent that takes you back to your favorite vacation spot.

Bath & Body Works always has lots of wallflowers and candles in seasonal scents— often on sale!

8. Get inspired

Finally, you can always do what I’ve been doing in my spare time: scour Pinterest for decorating inspiration. I mean, don’t we all have a Pinterest dream home?

What have you done to make a new place feel more like home? What would your dream home look and feel like? Share your thoughts in the comments!

P.S. How to combine decorating tastes with your man.

{ posted: Thursday, May 31, 2012 }


Comments: {2}

  • Sarah Pope writes:

    Love this post. Everything you listed are ways to help you move in. I did a ton of these, but I like the way you talked about scents. I didn’t do anything like that. I think that would have definitely helped to bring home to our new place! Thanks.

  • Kelsey writes:

    I definitely agree about setting up your bed and your kitchen first! I always do those on the first day to give myself some sanity!

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