When you pack up your old home to head toward a new one, you’re also packing up your old life. Sometimes you’ll have to discard a lot of things because they no longer have a place in your destination. When you do get to your new home, it might be a little unsettling.  You’ll be around people you barely know in a house that you haven’t lived in yet. You could feel like a stranger for a little while.

How could you feel more comfortable and more at ease? Well, you could start by making your new house feel like a real home.

Bring Out the Old

Whether you’ve bought a new apartment in Boston or moving into a rental home in Kansas City, surrounding yourself with the trappings of your old life can make you feel comfortable. If you have fond memories of growing up as a child, take out everything that hails from that sunny time of your life.

Although you’ll never be able to recreate your childhood residence, how can you not feel a little bit of those happy olden days when you bust out a beloved music box? Or maybe you have a nice set of framed childhood photos for your desk or mantel? Even old toys, like faded board games and stuffed animals, bring the warmth of your younger years into your new house.

You should also bring out familiar sights and sounds and incorporate them into your new surroundings. Perhaps there are a couple of posters or paintings that always greeted you in your living room. Or the constant tick of a particular clock soothed you in the bedroom. Bring all these objects out of their packing boxes and situate them around the house.

Being in the New

Family who just moved to their new house

You could find comfort in new and novel things as much as the old and familiar. Start by changing the curtains into drapery more to your liking. Shop for new throw pillows, coverlets, and bedsheets that can liven up the bedrooms and give you a good night’s sleep. Use nature as an inspiration and a way to increase your new home’s charm. Fresh flowers and arrangements of potted plants liven up any space and improve air quality.

If you’re in the mood for a tougher challenge, there are some major changes you can make to your house that could make it feel homier. Changing the doorknobs can give you an added sense of security and the opportunity to make your doors more to your liking. You can splurge and completely redo your bathroom. Install something luxurious like a steam shower or that bathtub you’ve always wanted. It’ll make your bathroom classier and give you a new way to relax after you’ve unpacked.

People are fond of saying “Home is where the heart is,” and in a way they’re right. Home is where you feel comfortable, where you feel safe, and where you feel loved. If you bring in the warmth of old memories, and the anticipation of making new ones, you can feel at home anywhere.