Nest Like a Pro – Turning a New House into Home Sweet Home

a black houe with large windows
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Moving house can sometimes feel about as chill as a rush-hour traffic snarl-up. Yep, that’s right, it’s mightily stressful for a lot of us and we often wonder why we started the process of finding that new home sweet home! 

However, we are not alone. SpareFoot, an organization that seriously knows its stuff about moving, rolled out a report stating that a whopping 30% of American adults find themselves in a moving shuffle each year, and planning on decorating a new house. That’s like the entire population of Texas hauling boxes every 12 months! 

Turning our new property into something we can call home is more than just placing our belongings into the house and settling straight in. We need to decorate to suit our lifestyles, tastes, and preferences, carving out a space that creates a harmonious flow and resonates with our personalities. 

No Lightweight Task

When you move house, you’re basically relocating your entire world from point A to point B. But the good news is great services these days, like the local movers in Oakland, can do the heavy lifting for you, making moving house that little less stressful.

Once you’ve set up camp at your new sweet home – the furniture is in, the boxes are unpacked (well, most of them anyway) – the fun can begin! It’s all about turning your new house into a home and decorating it just the way you like it.

So, with bated breath, let’s pull back the curtain on 10 important points that’ll make you a nesting pro and make your new house feel like a home.

Turning a New House into Home Sweet Home

a new house with a van parked outside as people move in

Before you begin to furnish and decorate a new house, you need to define your personal aesthetic. In a world that’s increasingly image-driven, the way we present ourselves, our homes, and our workspaces can say a lot about who we are.

Defining your personal aesthetic goes beyond mere appearance; it’s about carving out a space for yourself in the vast landscape of styles and trends.

Let’s delve into some of the most popular ones:

  1. Minimalist: Simplicity, functionality, and clarity are at the heart of this style. It’s characterized by neutral color palettes, streamlined furniture, and a lack of clutter.
  2. Bohemian (Boho): Eclectic, free-spirited, and layered, Bohemian interiors are a mix of patterns, colors, and textures.
  3. Vintage: This style is characterized by items that are aged, reclaimed, and reminiscent of a bygone era.
  4. Modern: Modern décor celebrates structure and order. It’s characterized by clean lines, basic shapes, and a neutral color palette.
  5. Rustic: Evoking the charm of the countryside, a rustic style is rugged, natural, and unpretentious.
  6. Industrial: Reflecting an urban loft feel, industrial style is raw and unfinished.
  7. Coastal (or Beachy): Light, breezy, and casual, this style exudes a relaxed, carefree vibe.
  8. Traditional: Rooted in the past, traditional style borrows classic details, timeless themes, and a rich mix of textures.
  9. Scandinavian: This style emphasizes simplicity, functionality, and a connection to the outdoors.

Remember, while these styles have distinct elements, the beauty of home décor is in its flexibility. Many homes mix and match aspects of different styles to create a personalized look. It’s all about what feels right for you and the space you’re in.

Setting a Budget and Prioritizing

a living room in white with large windows and oak panelling on the ceiling

If you want to decorate a new house or redesign a space, budgeting is crucial. Allocating funds effectively ensures that you can create a cohesive, attractive, and cozy environment that works for you without unnecessary expenses or regretful decisions.

The challenge often lies in deciding how to distribute funds between big-ticket items (like furniture and appliances) and accessories (like artwork, lamps, and decorative items).

  • Start by determining the total amount you are willing or able to spend on the space.
  • Ensure that this budget is realistic and includes a buffer for unexpected expenses.
  • Allocate a significant portion of your budget to big-ticket items such as sofas and beds. As a general rule of thumb, consider allocating 70-80% of your budget to big-ticket items. This percentage might vary based on individual preferences and specific needs.
  • While it’s tempting to save on big-ticket items by going for cheaper options, remember that quality often equates to longevity. Investing in a slightly pricier, but well-made piece might save you money in the long run by not needing to replace it prematurely.
  • Once you’ve allocated funds for your primary pieces, the remaining 20-30% can be set aside for accessories.
  • Accessories, while smaller in scale, play a crucial role in personalizing a space and making it feel complete.
  • Mix and match high-end pieces with more affordable finds. Maybe you splurge on a designer coffee table but find budget-friendly cushions or artwork. This approach keeps the space balanced and allows for a blend of quality and creativity.
  • Finally, when allocating funds, remember to account for delivery fees, assembly costs, or any additional warranties or protection plans you might opt for.

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Room by Room Approach

a living room with a sofa, rocking chair and boxes
The boxes may be around for a while, but don’t let that make you feel overwhelmed! Tackle a room one by one.

Moving house is definitely one of life’s most stressful moments and it can feel overwhelming to begin with. Where to start? The bedrooms and kitchen are always the most important rooms, to begin with, you need somewhere to sleep and eat!

However, it really depends on your needs when you start to decorate a new house. Once you have done the important things like putting up beds and finding somewhere for your pots and pans, you can decide on what room to tackle first. 

Living Room

a living room with fireplace, mirror above the fire, two sofas facing each other and recessed shelving

The focal point in a living room, or any room for that matter, plays a pivotal role in interior design. It’s a foundational concept that can make or break the cohesiveness and usability of a space.

Having a clear focal point in the living room can greatly assist in furniture arrangement and space planning. Furniture can be arranged to either face, flank, or highlight the focal point, ensuring that there’s a logical flow in the room and eliminating the guesswork of where things should go.


a bedroom with a cast iron bed, floral bedding, sage green walls and roman blinds. There is a mustard velvet bench at the end of the bed

The bedroom is more than just a room; it’s a personal retreat. It’s where we start and end our days, a place of respite, dream-making, reflection, and intimacy. Given the private nature of this space, the importance of comfort and personalization becomes even more pronounced.

A comfortable bedroom offers solace from the stresses of daily life. Quality bedding, well-chosen lighting, and room temperature control can foster a soothing environment, essential for emotional and physical relaxation.

Investing in a good mattress, blackout curtains, or soundproofing can greatly enhance sleep quality. Sleep, being fundamental to well-being, makes comfort in a bedroom critical.


open shelving and wire racks in the kitchen

Storage in the kitchen is probably one of the biggest factors when it comes to viewing a new property and deciding if it works for you.

However, if your new home lacks storage, here are a few things you can do: 

  • Go vertical! Use wall-mounted racks for utensils, pots, pans, or mugs
  • Open shelving can be a stylish way to store dishes, glasses, and other kitchen items
  • Magnetic knife strips help to free up counter and drawer space
  • Attach hooks, magnetic strips, or organizers to store measuring cups, spoons, lids or even cutting boards. 
  • Pull-out pantries are efficient space savers and can fit into narrow spaces
  • Consider hanging storage solutions for things like stemware or mugs under the cabinets
  • Inside cabinets or on countertops, tiered shelves can help you access items stored at the back.
  • Hanging pot racks can free up cabinet space.
  • The area below your cabinets, known as the toe-kick, can be turned into pull-out drawers, perfect for flat items like baking trays.
  • A kitchen cart can serve as additional counter space and storage. When not in use, it can be tucked away.
shelves with pots, pans, jars and utensils hanging underneath them

Choosing a color palette for your kitchen is a significant decision as it can influence the mood, perceived space, and overall aesthetic of the room. There are many factors when it comes to decorating a kitchen.

Consider the size of the kitchen first as light colors can make a small kitchen feel more spacious. However, if you have a large kitchen, dark or bold colors can make your room feel cozier. 

If you’re not remodeling the entire kitchen in a new home, consider the colors of existing elements like flooring, appliances, and countertops. Your new palette should complement these.


plenty of storage space in this bathroom with drawers, shelving with towels and a grey bath

Storage can also be at a premium in bathrooms and a big consideration when looking for a new house. Space in the bathroom can often be limited so it requires innovative storage solutions. 

A floating vanity provides a sleek look while also offering storage space beneath the sink. The open space can also make the bathroom appear larger. Wall-mounted cabinets with mirrors on the doors are perfect for storing smaller items like medicines, cosmetics, and toiletries.

Also, think about the space above the toilet. Shelving units or cabinets that fit over the toilet take advantage of often-unused vertical space. This is also a good area to implement recessed shelves which can hold toiletries, towels, or decorative items without protruding into the room. 

a bathroom with large drawers and two sinks under the mirro

Other storage ideas include; 

  • Over-the-Door storage
  • Towel racks or hooks
  • Ladder storage
  • Hanging baskets
  • Wall-mounted magnetic strips
  • Shower caddy
  • Rotating cosmetic organizer

Home Is Where the Candle Is 

a living room with a candle on the coffee table and a vase of flowers

Think of candles as the ambassadors of a cozy ambiance in your new house. Scents are powerful memory triggers, according to a study from the Association for Psychological Science.

Marketed as ‘comfort in a jar’, scents like vanilla, lavender, cinnamon, and fresh linen can usher in tranquility and nostalgia, transforming your new house into a place that seems known and inviting. Remember, flickering candlelight can debunk the ‘newness’ and infuse your rooms with a lived-in charm.

Cocoon in Comfort

a cozy corner of a house with corner sofa, fairy lights hung around the window and lots of candles

Adding elements of softness to your decor confers a cozy and secure feeling. According to research, soft furnishings contribute to positive emotions, so don’t hold back on those plush pillows, snug blankets, and velvety drapes.

They boost the comfort factor and carve out spots of relaxation, enticing you into new nooks and crannies of your home. If walls could talk, draped in soft fabrics, they would surely whisper “welcome home”.

Preserving Memories, Framing Familiarity 

a gallery wall next to a staircase
Get your photos and artwork up as quickly as possible.

Nothing says ‘home sweet home’ like cherished photographs, so aim to hang them up as soon as you can. Displaying framed snapshots of cherished memories, loved ones, or favorite places instills a sense of familiarity and continuity.

It’s like weaving elements of your past into the present living space, tightening the emotional connection you feel with your new house from the get-go.

a bedroom with a vintage mural behind the bed and vintage pillows on the bed. There is a velvet bench at the end of the bed.

Your unfamiliar house can soon start to feel like your own little corner of the world. Adjusting to a new space can take a hot minute, but remember, the waiting game and personal touches will help you in this transition.

Transforming a new house into a home isn’t just a task to cross off your to-do list. It should be a fulfilling journey to enjoy and take pride in. It does take patience though, so, inhale, exhale, let those candles flicker, poof up those pillows, showcase your pictures, and create a home that works for you and your family.

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a very small commission if you click through and make a purchase. These links help to pay the editorial costs of writing a blog. For more information, please read my full affiliate disclosure here.

I also use Artificial Intelligence Image generators to create some of my images. These are to show you examples of my ideas and inspiration when I cannot produce the real images myself.

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