April 2, 2019

Hosting a Move-In Party: Tips & tricks


With your long distance moving experience finally over, there comes a realization that you are still left with a lot of work and a lot of stress. Even if, hopefully, moving your valuables to a new home you carefully chose has gone without a hitch, the job of moving is still not over. Sometimes you still have to renovate parts or all of your new home. You have to get used to new surroundings, neighbors, distance from friends and family and, of course, unpacking. This after-move process can take a month or more and can just make it look like your life isn’t getting more stable even after you finished the move. So, what to do to finally put some kind of a (mental) end to the whole process? Well, hosting a move-in party might just be it!
It’s a great way to finally put an official end to your move, meet your neighbors, catch up with your friends and family and show off your new home, and therefore, come to terms with the beginning of your new life in this new house.
With all the benefits mentioned, you shouldn’t be surprised that this is no new thing. Its a tradition and has its own etiquette and tips and tricks to help out.

To bring warmth to a new home – a tradition

Hosting a move-in party is nothing new. This kind of event is also known as a house warming party (or Food pounder in the Southern USA). This name comes from a tradition back in the day in which people brought firewood to literary “warm-up” the house, in a time before heating was widely available.

In the past, guests would bring more than just emotional worth to the new place… they would bring the literal fire.

Today, of course, central heating is widely available and such acts by guests are not necessary. However, the tradition to host a party after moving to a new home has remained. After all, the secondary function of such an event was to ward off evil spirits… why take chances?
On a more serious note, however, the benefits are still there. If you just, for example, used the movers Fairview TN to relocate away from your Tennessee home to a city on the East coast, you might want to be able to get the know your new neighbors. With that in mind, here is the common etiquette.

Common etiquette for hosting a move-in party

There are a few things to keep in mind when throwing such a party.

  • You don’t have to have it right away – Moving in is hard and often messy and exhausting. Give yourself time to settle in. Usually, hosting a move-in party should happen around a month after moving in.
  • When to invite – For a casual party, you can call a few days ahead. For a more formal event (wine tasting, dinner, etc.) call at least three weeks in advance.
  • Gifts from guests – they don’t bring firewood anymore, but gifts, either for the house or for the party itself, are expected.

How should it look like?

Consider what do you have time for and what kind of an event those who you invite are likely to enjoy. Consider these options:

Open house

If your friends and other invites all work different hours, you should consider an open house event. Get some snacks around the house and, for one afternoon, welcome guests as they come and show them around the house. This is a perfect solution if you are to invite a lot of people and you are afraid about how to fit them all.

Room for hosting a move-in party
Always compare the number of expected guest to a realistic amount of space your new home has to offer. If you don’t have enough, try to make them arrive at different times.

Also, it is far easier for your neighbors to come than for your cousins from Mt. Juliet TN. In other words, convenience is important both for you and attendees, and an open house might be a good solution. For this kind of move-in party, you should consider the afternoon.


Does your new home have a backyard? Excellent! A perfect excuse to invite your friends and neighbors to some barbecue. Of course, while there, they can tour the house and see all the interesting things about it, but also enjoy the fresh air and (hopefully) a sunny day. The afternoon is also the preferable option for this one.

Fancy dinner

Or, maybe, you are trying to impress? What better than throwing a fancy dinner. This will take some thorough preparation (early invitation, very ordered rooms, especially the one with the meal, homecooked dinner, etc.). This is recommended if the move went smoothly or if you find a respite in that perfectionist drive for a flawless party.

Three wine bottles
Wine tasting is a common theme for such parties.

For this event, we recommend the evening, as it is much more suited for a fancy dinner (it is dinner after all). Also, at least three weeks notice for the guests is recommended.

Other tips and tricks – hosting a move-in party

So, few more tips and tricks to help you out.
When cleaning your new home after a move you don’t necessarily have to make it all flawless. Some unpacked boxes here and there on a more relaxed party is completely fine. After all, everybody knows how much of a hard process moving really is. However, make all rooms at least presentable. Humans are a curious bunch and you will be asked to make a whole tour for sure
Also, consider inviting neighbors. This is a really good way to start your relationship with them.
Take special care for friends that helped you move – they deserve a special treat.
Make an invitation to the party personal – don’t be afraid to send them by mail… written rather than electronic. It gives out more personal vibe and is especially suited for a fancy party.
And, last but not least… have fun.¬†With moving finally done, hosting a move-in party should be the final phase of your moving process and the beginning of your new life in a new home. Don’t forget to enjoy it.


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