If you’re new to owning a home or you’re interested in making your home more versatile and inviting, you’ll need to make sure it’s stocked with the right items. Ultimately, you’ll be trying to achieve one (or more) of three goals with each purchase:
Certain items will improve your health and your safety, either by proactively maintaining your home so a disaster doesn’t occur, or giving you the tools you need to stop one in progress. You may never truly need these items, but if you find yourself in need of them, having them on standby could save your life.
If you want your home to stay in top condition, you’ll also need the right items to perform that ongoing care. Cleaning, organizing, and maintenance are vital roles for a homeowner, and you’ll need certain items to get it done.
Let’s not forget the comfort factor. Your home should be a place to relax and destress, so it’s important to have items that make your life easier, or allow you to truly feel at home.
These are some of the most important items to bring to your home or purchase new:
1. A fire extinguisher
Every home should have at least one fire extinguisher, and preferably multiple fire extinguishers of different varieties. Depending on the size of your home and specific risk factors you may face, it’s a good idea to have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen, and a minimum of one for each floor. You may never end up using these, but if a fire breaks out, they could prevent a disaster.
2. Smoke detectors (and a carbon monoxide detector)
You’ll also want to have a minimum of one smoke detector per floor as well as one in every bedroom and/or sleeping area. Smoke alarms will give your family enough time to evacuate a burning home, so make sure to replace their batteries regularly. You’ll also want at least one carbon monoxide detector per floor.
3. A tarp
Tarps are multifunctional, and you’ll have several options when buying one. You can use one to temporarily waterproof a given area, lay one down to make cleanup of yardwork easier, use it to guard frost, kill and prevent weeds in a given area, or even secure some of your items during storms.
4. A first-aid kit
Sooner or later, someone’s going to get hurt in your house. Hopefully, your incidents will be limited to minor cuts and bruises, but regardless of the severity of the injury, you’ll want a first-aid kit on standby to address it. Bandages, gauze, scissors, and other items are a practical necessity.
5. A power outage kit
If the power goes out, you’ll need to be prepared for dealing with it. A radio with batteries, a couple of flashlights, and enough candles to light an area are a good start. Be sure to have some distilled water available as well.
6. Duct tape
Though it’s become something of a joke, duct tape truly is incredibly useful to have on hand. It can temporarily (or permanently) fix just about anything that’s broken.
7. Brooms and dustpans
Brooms and dustpans are your first line of defense against dirt and debris that accumulates on any hardwood, tile, or linoleum floor.
8. A vacuum cleaner
Similarly, a vacuum cleaner will keep your carpeted floors and possibly your furniture free from debris.
9. Microfiber cloths
Microfiber cloths are nonabrasive, and can be used to clean a wide variety of surfaces. Think of them as your all-in-one surface cleaners.
10. Cleaning products
You’ll also want a variety of cleaning products on hand, including antimicrobial wipes, bleach, and bathroom cleaners, as well as brushes and rubber gloves to make use of them.
11. A high-quality bed
The quality of your sleep is inextricably linked to your health. One of the best investments you can make for your home is a high-quality mattress that allows you to get a good night’s sleep.
12. Pots and pans
If you’re doing your own cooking, you’ll want to have a full set of pots and pans on hand. The diversity of items here can make dinner much easier—and possibly fun to make.
13. A set of knives
Similarly, it’s important to have at least one good set of knives. Comfortable, sharp knives will make cutting easier while simultaneously reducing your risk of cutting yourself. Plus, you never know when you might need a knife for another quick job around the house, like cutting open a package.
Expanding Your Supplies
These aren’t the only items you’ll need in your home, obviously, but they are some of the most important essentials to start your new life and maintain your health and safety. Pay attention to problem areas, like gaps in your monthly cleaning or a lack of comfort in a certain area, and look for products that could potentially fill those niches. Once you have a wish list, you can gradually obtain and cross off items.