A good housewarming party encourages guests to feel comfortable in a new home. Send invitations to friends and family, and include clear directions that use highly visible landmarks. If parking is an issue, let them know their best options. Serve food that is fun to eat and allows people to mingle, and use games to introduce your loved ones to your new home.
Use your new kitchen to throw a competition. Ask everyone to bring their favorite simple recipes and take a vote to choose the top three or four recipes. Then create teams to prepare each one. Once the food is ready, have everyone cast a vote on which turned out the best. The catch is that people cannot vote for their own team. Award a prize to the winners.
Introduce your guests to your new home by having a treasure hunt. Hide a prize somewhere in your home and come up with some clever clues or riddles that lead your guests toward the hiding place. Incorporate notable aspects of your new home, such as a fireplace or an impressive bathtub. If some of your guests are meeting for the first time, set up teams so that everyone gets involved.
Design a game that uses your new outdoor space. For example, if you have a large backyard, set up a relay race. If you have a sizable patio, play some board or card games outside. If your home has an impressive barbecue, set up a steak-cooking competition. Tell guests to bring their favorite spices and sauces to the party, while you supply the steaks.
Chances are that some of the people you invite have never met other guests. Show new people your home, then ask them to act as a tour guide and show others. This helps break the ice, plus gives everyone a chance to see your new place. Switch the tour guide occasionally so that everyone gets to know one another. Award a prize to the most hospitable guide.
Show off your new home’s space by buying or renting a table game. A ping pong or pool table provides a fun group activity that can serve as a party theme. Set up a tournament-style ranking system and allow guests to choose their partners. Offer a prize to the winner.
Stan Mack is a business writer specializing in finance, business ethics and human resources. His work has appeared in the online editions of the "Houston Chronicle" and "USA Today," among other outlets. Mack studied philosophy and economics at the University of Memphis.