The purchase of your very first property can be quite a costly experience. But once you are finally ready to move in, with potentially limited funds left available, how do you furnish your new house to make it your dream home?
As a first time buyer, your new home is probably your largest expense to date and one you have inevitably saved long and hard for. So, when you excitedly turn that key for the first time, you deserve to feel proud and empowered. Having survived the whole purchasing process, you can now breathe a sigh of relief that you have finally moved in. But this is usually when reality kicks in and a whole series of questions may be running through your mind – do I need a painter? New furniture? New carpets? So, where do you start?
This is an experience all first-time buyers go through, some are lucky enough to only consider how to furnish their new property, whilst others may need to refresh with a new lick of paint or embark upon a complete renovation. All these are costly expenses that you may or may not have budgeted for, but having forked out so much already you would understandably like to keep expenses to a minimum. Before you go about furnishing your home, there are a few things that you will need to consider, such as the type of build. With new builds, for instance, you will find a range of integrated appliances have been built into the kitchen, along with an array of additional fixture and fittings. At the same time, with pre-owned homes, you may find the owners may be leaving behind some furnishings, appliances or even curtains and blinds. Such items will certainly prove useful to you for the interim, as it gives you the option of saving a little more and investing in quality items. These details will usually be verified by your solicitors during the purchasing process, and do be pro-active in gaining this information, as it could save you much time and money in the long run.
So, here are our top tips…
Consider the essentials
Our top advice would be to initially move in with the bare essentials; an air bed, some cutlery and a sofa to sit on. This may have always been the plan for those planning to renovate or update the home, but for those looking to settle in, it may be wise to only consider filling the property once the housewarming is over. Leaving you to have a great time with your friends and family without the stress of potential damage to your new home.
Once the party is over and your new home empty, you now have a blank canvas that you can settle into. This additional settling-in period will give you time to refresh paint or carpets or put together your to-do list.
Upcycle the old for new
Upcycling is a great way to give your home that personal touch and individuality. This may not be an option for everyone, as it calls for creativity and a bit of hard graft, but the sense of pride you feel when guests compliment your striking furnishings will certainly make this a worthwhile exercise. Ultimately, this is a versatile exercise as anything can be upcycled, so if you are a little sceptical of your skills, start with something simple like a lampshade. On the other hand, if you are feeling more daring, why not make a project out of an item of furniture the previous vendors have left behind, or even head down to a charity shop or car boot sale to grab yourself a bargain.
Invest wisely in the most-used furnishings
With budgets to adhere to, it may be worth weighing up how much to spend on each item, based on consumption and wear. Some household furnishings and appliances are set to last you years, so it is there worth investing more and making a quality purchase. In terms of furnishings, what is more valuable to you will inevitably be dependent on your lifestyle, so take time to consider your top five most-used items before you splurge. It may also be worth taking up additional warranties for household appliances, as your home insurance may not cover some items such as washing machines which are made considerable use of. Here are our top five:
Based on the recommended eight hours sleep, we would typically spend 1/3 of the day in our beds, which accumulates to a 1/3 of our lives. As a typical bed would also last you about 10 years, this calculation rationalises that a quality bed is an investment worth making. At the same time, it is important to bear in mind pricier does not mean better, although a quality mattress is worth splashing out on.
After a hard day’s work, a comfy sofa is all you need, coupled, of course, with a good glass of wine.
A quality dining table could last you years. It could also make a great feature when entertaining friends and family. Whilst it easy to upcycle existing furnishings or cover up with a table cloth, it may be worth splurging out on a statement dining table when possible.
This household appliance is crucial to any home, and there are so many varieties available nowadays, from the smart fridge/freezer that helps with creating a shopping list to the more traditional and basic models. The prices of such household appliances can vary considerably and as it is a one-off expense it’s worth taking the time to shop around.
The washing machine is another household appliance that we take for granted, whilst also one we cannot do without. Washing machines come in a variety of styles and price ranges, offering just a basic spin and wash, to the washer/dryer ranges with digital features. Again, this is a household item you would only like to splash out on once, so it is worth making a quality purchase.
You have finally moved into your first home, but there is honestly no rush in getting it finished and furnished straightaway. These things always take time, even for those moving to their second or third home, as each property is so different and essentially, you want to get it right the first time. Understandably, there is only so long you can sleep on an airbed or use boxes as a table, but is all part of the experience! On a more serious note, taking the time to browse around and make sensible quality purchases can save you a considerable sum of money in the long run.
Housewarming gifts are a first-time buyers dream. Whilst these welcoming gifts will prove useful to you as a first-time buyer, the last thing you want to do is accumulate a series of unnecessary items, after all, how many candles does a home really need? If friends and family request suggestions for gifts you require, it may be worth requesting gift vouchers, or if they are looking for a nudge, items such as cutlery, pots, pans, storage containers, towels, soft furnishings and lamps would all be everyday essentials that you would need.
A vibrant bunch of flowers instantly spruce up any home, making it fresh and fragrant. And if you do not have a vase hanging around, why not upcycle an old bottle or jar?
From all of us at Mackenzie Smith congratulations on your first home.
We hope these tips will help you settle into your new home, but if you require any further advice, or need help looking for your first home, please contact the team at your local branch:
Ash Vale – firstname.lastname@example.org – 01252 353030
Farnborough – email@example.com – 01252 375999
Fleet – firstname.lastname@example.org – 01252 812121
Hook – email@example.com – 01256 764666
Hartley Wintney – firstname.lastname@example.org – 01252 844015
Lettings – email@example.com – 01252 514000