I've entered the age bracket where having friends gets expensive. They are all getting married, having kids, and buying houses and I'm left coming up with gift ideas for each event. I refuse to give another friend a vanilla scented candle or a white orchid so I've put together this list of underdone gift ideas. Bonus: all come from small businesses. Take that, big box stores!
1. Copper Mugs
Because. Moscow Mules. This set of 4 from HomeWetBar.com will only run you $89.95.
Copper mugs are something everyone wants but no one can justify buying for themselves. Nothing says 'you better still be fun and have me over for drinks' more than a set of copper mugs.
2. A Return Address Embosser
The Stationery Studio has a wide range of styles to pick from on sale for $39.95
Make it say something adorable like "The Family at ..." This is an especially good gift for a soon-to-be married couple. Sending thank you notes have never been more fun.
3. Watercolor of the Home
For your sentimental, first-time homeowner friends, try a watercolor of their house. This adorable one from Coco Calligraphy starts at just $39.
This one may take a little more advanced thought (takes 5-7 business days and you'll need to do a sly drive-by picture taking trip) but it's something that they will keep forever. This would also make the perfect closing gift to your buyers, hint hint real estate agents.
4. An Engraved Cutting Board
Step one, buy a house. Step two, get nice things. Start them out with a custom engraved cutting board. This Etsy shop, Our Board Boutique, has some starting at only $12.50. Perfect for those of you on a tight budget.
My favorite is the one they have about being hangry.
5. Throw Blanket
For those of you willing to splurge a little, I love these wool throws from High Street Market. The blanket will cost you $190 but your snobby friends with a home ready for a catalogue shoot will appreciate it.
Now you are all set to rock any housewarming party. Of course, you could just skip them all, and use the money for your own downpayment.
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Caity Salvatore founded Nestment.com when she was sick of hearing her friends complain about their real estate agents. She is out to prove that great agents do exist, and works as a matchmaker between home buyers/sellers and real estate agents. She spends her days interviewing agents and bingeing on Dunkin Donuts.