Woman giving a housewarming gift

So, candlesticks are nice, but seriously, what would be the perfect housewarming gifts for a first-time renter? Following are some great out-of-the-box suggestions:

Home Depot Gift Card

Any apartment dweller knows that things like appliances do break, and other odd items like outlets, doorknobs, window treatments and toilets occasionally need repair. Instead of waiting for the landlord to send someone for a minor problem, many tenants just try to handle things themselves, and that will necessitate a trip to your local home improvement store. An excellent gift would be a nice Home Depot card with just $50 on it.

Storage Facility Fees

Let’s say your first-time renter friend has downsized from a 3-bedroom suburban Chicago home to a 1-bedroom place in nearby Milwaukee, Wisconsin, they may need extra storage space. A thoughtful gift would be a prepaid couple of months at a local storage facility.

Downsizers typically don’t do a good enough job of culling their belongings and would probably really appreciate a couple of months of free storage for the rest of their things.

Individual Solar Panels

Eco-friendly tenants may want to put solar energy to use, but if their apartment isn’t set up for solar, they’d think they were out of luck. You can, however, purchase individual solar units that sit on a windowsill and can create enough energy to light a single room and simultaneously run a computer. Once the original investment—maybe only $50—is made, the new tenants will be able to cut their carbon footprint while saving money.

Restaurant Gift Certificate

You probably know exactly where your first-time renter friends like to go for dinner, and a gift certificate to that restaurant would be thoroughly welcomed. Moving can be quite stressful, and the last thing you want to have to worry about is where you are going to get dinner. A nice evening away from the frenetic pace of relocating and getting settled can be a great gift.

Pet Care

If your friends who have just moved in are harried, no doubt their pet will be also, so a prepaid visit to the neighborhood vet can be both cost-effective and constructive as it’s important for both pets and their owners to set up good veterinary relationships before something serious happens.

Oil Change

Who has time to get their oil changed anymore, and how many times have you felt like you got into the wrong line at the grocery store while you’re at the oil change place because the person in front of you has a newer vehicle with an almost impossible-to-reach oil pan? Save your busy first-time renter friends some serious time and offer to take their car in for service so they don’t have to.

Pet Sitting Service

If you’re low on cash, offer to watch your friend’s pets for free while they are away on vacation. Pet boarding can be a daunting task, and volunteering to take care of pets while your first-time renter friends are away for even a weekend can be a win for both of you.

Sure, monogrammed coffee cups, flowers, and kitchen cookware are great gifts, but think creatively like we have, and give your friends something different for a house-warming gift.