Frugal ideas for a housewarming party

Photo Credit: D Sharon Pruitt via Flickr

Photo Credit: D Sharon Pruitt via Flickr

Now that Brian and I have settled into the new condo, we’ve started having people over to show off the new house.  It’s a small condo, so we’re having small-ish batches of people over at a time.  So far, we’ve had Brian’s work colleagues and a group of my computer-y friends come over.  Any time you have a party, it can get expensive.  Food, snacks, soda, alcohol… it adds up!  As a result, we’ve been trying to think of housewarming party ideas that are fun AND affordable.

Buy snacks… but not too many

When people come over to my house, I like to be able to offer them snacks. But there’s no need to go overboard.  At a housewarming, I don’t think people are expecting a lavish dinner.  I usually put out a veggie tray, a few meats, cheeses and crackers, and two types of chips.  This costs us about $20.  Unless you’re specifically hosting your housewarming as a dinner party, you shouldn’t feel obligated to provide heavier foods.

And don’t stock up on drinks

This is sort of dependent on personal preferences.  I like to have a bottle of white wine, a bottle of red wine, and a few bottles of beer in the fridge to offer people when they first arrive.  No one likes to have a warm beer after all!  I’ll also have water, juice and teas.  But I’m expecting that most people will bring their own booze.  And usually (I’ve had quite a few housewarmings…), people will bring bottles of wine as gifts so I’ll end up with more wine that I could possibly need for one night!  As a result, I try not to go too crazy when buying drinks for a housewarming.

Play games!

We love playing board games, regardless of the occasion.  But I think breaking out a board game during a housewarming is a great way to make a new place feel more like home.  It’s a good way to get people engaged and talking to each other, and unless you’re buying a new game, it’s free!  At our housewarming, we played Cards Against Humanity.  If you’re not into board games, maybe one of your friends could bring over a game system.  One of my friends brought his Wii and we played a few rounds of Smash Brothers.


For me, the whole point of having a housewarming is to get some friends together and “break in” the new place.  You don’t need to get fancy appetizers or expensive wines to do this!

What other housewarming tips do you guys have?  

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