If someone you know just recently moved into an apartment or house or cardboard box, well, they're going to have a lot of empty space to fill. And, as a friend, it's your duty to warm that house up with stuff. Why? So when you crash there, you'll feel less guilty. I BOUGHT YOU THAT TOASTER, BRO.
Let's assume someone who's just moved in already has the modern day, first-world essentials like toilet, shower, sink, fridge, kitchen, bed, TV and couch. Even if they didn't, you're not buying them that (unless you're really rich, in which case I could also use any/all of those things?). But here are some normal-people gifts for normal new home dwellers.
1. Netgear WNDR4500 Router
Imagine your friend sitting on the wooden floor of his barren wasteland of an apartment, staring at his sad white wall, eating cold takeout with a plastic spoon. He's going to need an escape; he's going to need to access the information expressway known as the internet. That bastard lovechild of a modem and router he got from his crappy cable company? Not cutting it. Seriously, picture him loading a video. Buffering. Buffering. Buffering. Buffering. That is hell. Get him the best router on the market, the Netgear WNDR4500. $US180, coming to Australia soon. [Netgear]
2. Watts Premier 531130 Filter
After he's satisfied with internet, he's bound to get thirsty. We're human. Something like three quarters of our body is made up of water! We've gotta drink eight glasses a day! Plus, it tastes really good and it's necessary to cure for hangovers. A good filter that can tap into your friend's faucet gives will give him as much pure, unfettered water as he wants, whenever he wants. Every time he sips that hydration, he'll have you to thank. $US135 [Amazon]
3. Tripode Floor Lamp
The darkness. It's like a sickness. If a person lives without light too long, their soul slowly seeps away. Skin goes pale from the screen of the laptop. Eyes become buggered and bloodshot. Life gets sad. Sad turns into depression. Depression turns suicidal. Get a floor lamp and save your friend's landlord the trouble of mopping him up from the floor with a super classy Tripode Floor Lamp. It won't just lift spirits. It'll save a life. $US1120. [The Contran Shop]
4. Pyle-home PLTTB8UI Vinyl Turntable
There's something about the snap crackle and pop of a record player that'll make your friend feel at home even if the previous home never had a record player. It transforms an empty existence into a magical one (unless you listen to sad music, which why are you bumming yourself out?). Oh and if your friend doesn't own any records, he can just plug in his iPod and bump tunes like a modern savage. It defeats the purpose of peaceful nostalgia but hey, music is music. $US150. [Amazon]
5. Vitsoe 606 Universal Shelving System
The 606 Universal Shelving System was developed by the legendary Braun designer Dieter Rams in 1960, and elegantly fills a space by letting you, well, fill space. Walls that held nothing? They can now be arranged, rearranged, replaced, disassembled, put together and ripped apart and rebuilt. Customisable storage at its absolute finest, it's the tools you use to turn a blank canvas into a masterpiece or a house into a home. Price varies. [Vitsoe]
6. iRobot Roomba 577
Unless it's being done by a French maid or a robot, cleaning up is as frustrating as ripping staples from your brain. And unless you can get yourself a French maid, the iRobot Roomba 577 is the best robot cleaner and picker upper there is. It's great at sucking, sensitive around furniture and cleans with grace. Sounds like an ideal French Maid in circular robot form, actually. Right now, the highest-end Roomba you can get in Australia is the Roomba 577, which has an RRP of $799. Sultan, the Australian distributor says they expect the Roomba 760 (not 770) to come into Australia around February 2012. [iRobot]
7. Sheex Bedsheets
A lonely life in an empty apartment becomes less lonely with performance bedsheets and new bed partners. Sheex bedsheets are made from the same material as the workout shirts from Under Armour and Nike. That means a flat sheet that grooves itself onto your body, a bedsheet that wraps itself perfectly around your mattress, and a sensual material that envelopes its polyester around your knees and ankles while giving breathability to your backside. $US200. [Sheex]
8. Back to Basics TEM500 Egg and Muffin 2-slice toaster
Nothing quite smells like home sweet home than eggs and toast in the morning, and this wonderful puppy can make them both AT THE SAME TIME. Or if you just want toast, you can make toast. Or if you just want eggs, you can do that too. The utter versatility of this machine makes me gasp. It's an automatic conversation starter for your friend, Why don't you have this at your house? Do you not like eggs? Do you not like bread? Do you not like life? $US35. [Amazon]
9. Denali 115-Piece Home Repair Tool Kit
Things get broke and things need a fixin'. Things need to be built and things need to be torn apart. Any household, even if the people inside it don't like to get down and dirty, needs a simple tool set to solve annoying little problems. Also: gifting tools makes you look cool because tools are cool. So remember: you're not just gifting hammers, screwdrivers, tape measures, pliers and wrenches. You're turning your friend into Steve McQueen. $US50. [Amazon]
10. Nest Thermostat
Probably the most ridiculous and most unnecessary thing you can buy a new homeowner. A fancy arse thermostat! But Nest is the best thermostat you'll ever run into and if the people who just moved in are evenly remotely tech savvy, they'll appreciate the dial to change temperature, the changing colours of the screen and the all around smartness of Nest (it learns your habits!). And dude, it even has Wi-Fi. Everything in life needs Wi-Fi. Even a thermostat. $US250. [Nest]
Still haven't found the right present? Don't worry, we're here all month with a new gift guide every day — right up until the last minute. To see 'em all, head on over to our gift guides.