13 Ways to Make a House into a Home

Columbus Chamber
The Columbus Chamber provides connections, resources and solutions that help small businesses and Fortune 500 enterprises grow Central Ohio's economy.

Member Insights by Core Developments LLC

Just because it has a living room, kitchen, bedrooms, and bathrooms doesn’t mean that a house will automatically feel like home. Getting to know your house takes time and it’s important to make the space personal to you so you can start feeling that homey feeling today. Because everyone defines “home” differently, there is no right answer. Rather, we’ve collected 13 different things you can do to make your house feel like a home.

1) Finish Unpacking
Moving boxes don’t scream “this is our home,” even if they’re just in the garage. Find a place, its own little home, for each possession. If you pull something out of a box and it doesn’t feel like you anymore, donate it for someone else to put in their home.

2) Photographs
We want a home to be a reflection of who we are. What better way to represent yourself and your life than with photographs. Hang photos in a collection on the wall or group them together on shelves or mantles to add a bit of life into the room.

3) Personal Mementos
Personalizing a home can be more than putting out photos of ourselves. Be sure to display your mementos, collectibles, your own artwork, awards, or anything else that invites a feeling of the space being “yours.”

4) Brightness
Home should be a place of cheer and happy memories. Create a bright and cheerful ambiance when you add bold colors to the walls, create interesting light features, or optimize natural light with window coverings and shade.

5) Aromas
Scent is the strongest sense tied to memory. Try opening the windows to clear out any existing smells. Add fragrance to a room with essential oil diffusers. You can also find scents tied to other homes you’ve lived in, to inspire nostalgia.

6) Small Upgrades
Since it’s likely you didn’t design the home yourself from top to bottom, it can sometimes feel as if you are living inside a cookie cutter home. Focus on small upgrades that you can DIY. Consider replacing cabinet pulls or your showerhead to make the space feel more like home.

7) New Things
Turing a house into a home may necessitate buying new items to fit the space, match a new theme, or just excite you. Be responsible with your budget, but shop for items that can set this home apart from the other places you’ve lived.

8) Utilities
They say that home is anywhere the wifi connects automatically. When you’re moving into a new home, you’ll want to set up utilities such as internet, cable, and electricity in advance so the moment you move in, it feels like a livable space.

9) Neighbors
A home is more than the building you live in. Your neighborhood and neighbors can also help inspire a welcoming feeling of home. Don’t be shy. Go knock on your neighbors’ doors and introduce yourself.

10) Clean
Cleanliness often inspires a feeling of order which makes people happy. Before you move in, consider having the carpets, windows, baseboards, inside cabinets, and every other little nook and cranny cleaned. With no trace of the old owners, you’ll soon feel at home.

11) Plants
Adding life to your space with plants creates warmth and invitingness that inspires feelings of belonging. Even keeping cut flowers in a vase where you can admire them will add excitement to the room.

12) Pets
Need a little more excitement and life than a plant can give? Try getting a pet! When you share your house with a pet, it becomes home for both of you. Building a family and making good memories together will soon have you feeling at home.

13) Time
Now that you’ve set your house up in a way that encourages feelings of home, you need to spend time there. Enjoy the house and get to know its secrets and quirks. Invite guests over for a housewarming to introduce them to your space.

Buying a new house and leaving an old one behind can leave you feeling awkward in your new space. Try several of these tips and your house will quickly feel like home.