Household Essentials That Every New Apartment Needs

Setting up a new household can be overwhelming and terrifying if you don’t know where to begin. We have compiled a list of necessities to help get you started. Just follow this general list of house hold essentials to purchase everything you need to set up your new home.

    •     Waste basket sand trash bins - Purchase one wastebasket for each room in your new home and a big kitchen trash bin for the kitchen. Depending on where you live, you may need to purchase an outdoor trashcan and recycle bin for the outside.


   •     Trash bags - You will need at least a few rolls handy to toss away any useless items during the moving process. Get some heavy-duty ones for your kitchen and outside trashcan and smaller ones for the wastebaskets in each room. You can also use grocery bags to line your wastebaskets. Wastebasket and trash canliners are essentials that every home needs. Instead of having to wipe down your trash bin every time, all you need to do is cinch the liner bag and takeout the trash.


   •     Broom- There are many varieties and price ranges, but the most traditional ones are the old straw brooms. They hold up better and make for great dusters to cleanup any dust and debris after you unpack.


   •     Dust Pan - Dust pans with the snap on handle brushes make for great small clean-up jobs.


   •     Mop -Washable mops are necessary for cleaning up the home. You can get one with an empty bucket attached so that you can make your own cleaning mixture as well as for rinsing and storing.


   •     Cleaning rags - you should buy a whole bundle of inexpensive cleaning rags that you won’t mind getting stained as regular home essentials. You can purchase pretty ones for show, but always have cheaper options on hand that you don’t mind getting dirty. These rags will take a beating from all the cleaning that you do any way, so they don’t need to look nice. Although paper towels are handy to have, you can get through one roll pretty quickly and accumulate a hefty grocery bill. 


   •     Sponges- Sponges are essential for cleaning and scrubbing anything from bathroom sinks, dishes, to kitchen counters. I good health tip to implement is colour coding your sponges to prevent cross-contamination. Make each colour specific for a purpose - blue for cleaning kitchen sinks, yellow for cleaning dish washing, green for scrubbing kitchen counters, black for scrubbing stove tops and son on. You don’t want to use the same sponge for cleaning dishes as you do for scrubbing the sink!


   •     Dusting cloths - You can use old rags are specifically made reusable dusting cloths that are treated to quickly grab and trap dust to remove allergens for healthier,cleaner air without the use of sprays. You can buy soft, cotton flannel cleaning cloths that leave behind no dust-attracting residue. These types of dusting cloths are great for furniture care. You can use them regularly to keep dust at bay - and can be used on furniture, curtains, blinds, appliances,cabinets, glass and mirrors, ceiling fans, walls and railings, auto interiors…etc.You can even fit them on to floor sweepers (like Swiffer Sweepers) to wipe down the floors of your home. 


   •     Glass cleaner - You can buy branded glass cleaner at supermarkets or you can make your own, which works just as well and are even better for your health. One of the biggest offenders in environmental toxins is household cleaners, so by making your own, you can save the environment and your wallet. 


   •     All-purpose cleaner - These cleaners are usually ammonia based and come in a variety of scents to cater to different olfactory tastes. As the name applies, all-purpose cleaner can be used for many purposes - floors, counter tops, walls, and general cleaning. 


   •     Bleach- Bleach comes in handy for bleaching your whites and also for disinfecting counter tops and cleaning toilets.


   •     Laundry Detergent - Laundry detergent come in a variety of scents, and forms. You can buy them in suds, liquid or pod forms. A good tip is to buy a variety of different brands in small packaging, then narrow down to your favourite to stock up. 


   •     Fabric Softener - Fabric softener also comes in liquid form or in sheets. It i used when washing clothes and other laundry to soften the fabric and reduce static.They also come in a myriad of lovely scents that you can choose from.


   •     Towel sand washcloths - The essential bathroom items that every home needs, you should purchase one set for each person in the home as well as spare sets for guest sand as backups. Towels come in many different textures now so you can choose the one you like most. They also come in a variety of sizes ranging from small hand towels, face-washing cloths, regular-sized hand towels, medium sized bath towels and large to extra-large sizes for other functions like swimming or to be used for the beach. It’s good to buy one of each size to be compiled in to a set for every person who resides in the home. 


   •     Coasters- Beverage coasters will protect your furniture from stain marks and spills,especially if you have wood furniture. You can get really creative with coasters as there are so many beautiful designs out there. 


   •     Laundry Baskets - Purchase one laundry basket per person so that everyone can distinguish their clothes from each other. Keep the laundry basket in each person’s bathroom, so that you can throw your dirty laundry in there whenever you take a shower. 


   •     Basket sand boxes - You always want to have these types of containers around because they are so functional and versatile. Baskets and boxes of varying sizes and shapes can be used to hold and organise different products in your home. Large baskets are perfect for stocking magazines in the bathroom and living room.Medium-sized baskets are great for holding any miscellaneous storage items like electronics, cleaning products, and so on. Smaller ones can be used as containers on tabletops and desks to hold things like pens and pencils, keys,cotton swabs, Q-tips, soaps…etc. You can get as imaginative as you like but it’s always good to organise your things by categorising them in to different containers so that they each have a place to call home. If you have things sitting around the home without an actual allocated place to put it, clutter can be up super fast. 


   •     Shoe holders - You can keep your shoes organised in a variety of ways. You can either purchase a shoe shelf (given that you have room in your home to put it),or you can invest in foldable linen shoe boxes that are stackable inside closets or under the bed (for homes with less space). If you have very minimal space to storage your things, then the best option would be to buy an shoe holder that hangs over the door. They are functional and great space-savers.You can have one in each room as long as theres a door available for you tohang it over. You can even use them to organise kitchen supplies, bathroom toiletries, arts and crafts supplies, office and work tools, jewellery and accessories - the list goes on and on.



Welcome mat and area rugs - Welcome mats are pretty to put outside to welcome guests but the main purpose really is to allow anyone who walks in to first wipe their feet before entering. You can bring in all sorts of dirt from the outside, so consider leaving at least one in the entrance, and even some additional mats for in front of the kitchen sink and anywhere else you find useful to have in your home.


   •     Light bulbs - Buy a variety of light bulbs that are suitable for the light fixtures in your home and stock up. You never know when a light bulb will run out of steam,and these are essentials you need to have stocked in your home at all times.Consider purchasing energy-saving light bulbs.


   •     Toilet Paper - Sounds like a no-brainer but you would be surprised by how often people forget to buy this one very necessary item when grocery shopping. You don’t want to be stuck in a situation with no toilet paper and no bidet to clean up! Always stock up on much more toilet paper than you think necessary. You don’t ever need to worry toilet paper being wasted purchases because you will always have a use for them.


   •     Paper Towels - Paper towels are good to have around the home because they act like disposable wash cloths. You can use them to wipe down large surfaces, soak up spilled liquid, and clean up after your pets.


   •     Smoke alarms - If you don’t already have them installed in your home, it’s essential that you have one to sense smoke and detect the onset of a fire in your home. You may accidentally leave your stove on or a candle burning, which can all cause fires in your apartment.


   •     Fire extinguisher - Most apartment complexes will have at least one fire extinguisher on each floor. Definitely check to make sure that your home has one in place in the case of any fire emergencies.


   •     Houseplants- Houseplants are good for overall ambience and to help freshen up air. Be careful what kind of houseplants you get if you have pets though, because some plants can be toxic to animals if ingested. 


   •     Shower Curtains and shower rod rings - Most bathrooms have a bathtub with a standing shower. Standardly speaking, unless the apartment you rent comes fully furnished or is a serviced apartment, you will need to buy your own shower curtains and shower rod rings. Without a shower curtain, you will flood your bathroom every single time you attempt to take a shower. Although, some modern apartments now don’t require as hower curtain because the whole shower is enclosed in a glass box or with a shower door. 


   •     Curtains and rods - I once made the mistake of believing that I wouldn’t need curtains or blinds in my home.That was a big mistake. I thought that natural sunlight would be a wonderful thing, but little did I know what I big regret this would be. Not only will you need curtains in all windows of your home to block light from entering at odd hours, curtains also serve to give your home more privacy. Whether you live in a house or an apartment, it’s not safe to have windows that are completely transparent from outside view. This can give you security problems. Please note that not all homes will come with curtain rods installed on the window frames, so make sure you check first whether you need to measure and install your own rods for curtain customisation.


   •     Toilet bowl brush with holder set - Good to have around for regular cleanings. There is nothing more gross and unsanitary than a dirty toilet.


   •     Mail Holder - Install a box of some sort in the entry way to hold your mail, bills,important notices, newsletters and any other paper trails. It’s good to keep one in the front door soyou don’t have important paperwork lying around in a mess. 


   •     Dry-erase board  and markers - every home needs a board where family members can write down important things to remember. It serves as a communal to-do list and daily reminder of things that may need to be taken care of. 


   •     Basic tool box - You don’t necessarily need a state-of-the-art, fancy tool kit, but at the very least you should have a standard box with things like a hammer, screw drivers, nails of different sizes and shapes, a level for hanging things up on the wall, measuring tape,wire cutter, electrical tape, duct tape and any other tools you may need to make small alterations and fixer-uppers around the home. You can’t always call in professional help for small tasks, so its good to learn these basic skills to do them yourself.


   •     Picture-hanging kit - You can buy these kits at home hardware stores, or even in places such as IKEA. These tool kits come with a full set of brass hangers, nails and wire for hanging up pictures, art, and decor frames. 


   •     Toiletries- These are the most basic toiletries you will need: hand soap, toothbrush,toothpaste, dental floss, mouthwash, shampoo and conditioner, body wash, cottons wabs/balls, Q-tips, band aids, antibiotic ointment, rubbing alcohol, scissors,and peroxide. 


   •     Nightlights - It’s nice to have a number of night lights spread out across your home, especially in the hallways so that you can make your way around your home at night without having to turn on and off the main lights whenever you need to find something. Night lights are a great economical option, they are cheap and practical for every home.


   •     Lamps- Most apartments will come furnished with basic light fixtures like over head lighting, but you should also consider purchasing some tabletop and desk lamps for working and a couple of your nightstands.


   •     Hangers- You can simply never have too many hangers. I have never heard of any one having so many hangers they couldn’t use it up. Always have enough and more just in case, plus they don’t cost much to just keep on hand.


   •     Mirrors- Each home should have at least one floor length mirror and one regular sized hanging mirror. Usually you will already have a regular sized wall mirror in the bathroom over the sink but most homes won’t come furnished with floor length mirrors. 


   •     Bookshelf- You should purchase at least one small bookshelf to keep all your books organised. I once naively thought I wouldn’t need a book shelf and laid out all my books on the floor in an attempt to be artsy - unsurprisingly, this didn’t workout so well for me. Cleaning the floors of my home became a huge production every time because I would have to take the books off the floor to wipe, mop and vacume. If you are a book aficionado, then definitely invest in a nice tall bookshelf to keep your babies nice and neat. Bookshelves can be multi function -you can even use them to store baskets and use a display cases for art, picture frames, and small decorative pieces. 


   •     Basic office supplies - Stapler, office scissors, paper clips, blue tack, rubber bands, note pads, post-its, pen, pencils, highlighters, permanent marker, tape and a ruler or the most basic tools you will need.



Engel & Völkers

Hong Kong, Real Estate Agency
Shop A, Ground Floor, 95 Caine Road, Mid Levels
- Hong Kong
Company License: C-035745
+852 2561 3616

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