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Sep 14, 2009 07:52 AM

What's the name for this type of party?

We just bought a new house and want to throw a party to welcome our new neighbors, co-workers and friends to our home.

What do you call this type of party? Open house? I suspect that I'm being dense and that an obvious answer is right in front of me, but I've been thinking about this all weekend and can't come up with a satisfactory name.

Thanks for your suggestions,


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  1. Wouldnt that be a "House-Warming" party?

    but I suppose you could call it whatever you want!

    12 Replies
    1. re: NellyNel

      I thought a house-warming party is what others throw a new home owner, not the other way around.

      I'm just fishing for the right phrase to put on invitations so that people know what to expect. Like I said, I'm feeling a little dense right now.

      1. re: DNA481

        sorry to confuse the issue, but I think you are right. A house worming party is thrown by others for the new home owner. It implies gifts.

        If you are throwing it yourself, I think you should just call it whatever it is, "dinner party", "cocktail party", etc. and then in the body of the invitation say something like "please help us celebrate our new new home" .

        1. re: danna

          I always thought a house warming party was one that one hosted when one moved into a new house - but that others might bring gifts.

          1. re: MMRuth

            In these parts (North-east)- a house warming party is thrown by the owners themselves to invite people to their new home.

            Believe me - I have been to enough of them in the last few years!

            1. re: NellyNel

              Same here in Eastern / Southern Ontario. A housewarming is always, in my experience, thrown by the owners of the new home!

              1. re: NellyNel

                Same here in the midwest. I've never heard of anyone throwing YOU a house-warmning party. The point is to show off your new home and invite others over. Gifts sometimes show up as well, but it's optional.

          2. re: NellyNel

            Indeed. I've always heard it referred to as a house-warming party.

            1. re: vorpal

              Then that's it. Seems like a silly question, but for some reason I couldn't wrap my brain around it.


              1. re: DNA481

                Yeah, it even fits in with the etymology. I guess it's an event to kickstart it from a building into a home. You'll have an instant goodtime memory you can cherish!

          3. As others have said, house warming party but you could have a "house warming open house" if you have a window of time where people can come and go as they please.

            4 Replies
            1. re: chowser


              I think you nailed it for me. A "house warming open house" is exactly what we're thinking. Except how do I rephrase it so that 2 of the 4 words are not house?

              1. re: DNA481

                The phrase is fine as it is, but there will always be people who fail to grasp the point, repetition or not. I'd suggest phrasing the invitation like this: Please join us Friday, October 00, any time between x:00 and y:00, to help us turn [or even "warm"] our new house into a home.

                I think the phrase "at home" is actually more accurate than "open house" (which implies anybody can come, as to view a house on sale, rather than invited guests), but even fewer people would understand that.

                1. re: mbfant

                  Yes, "at home" is the old fashioned proper phrase to indicate times when you would be available to receive callers.

              2. It's a house-warming party, of course...

                1. The original comment has been removed
                  1. I would call it an open house. Calling it a house warming party to me would imply that a gift is warranted, and i assume you do not intend that. If I went to a house warming party, I would bring a gift. I would feel comfortable going to an open house with no more than a bottle of wine. Most people you are inviting already know that you recently bought your home, so I don't see the need to add it to the name.

                    Unless of course, it is not an open house party, i.e. a party for a number of hours where people can come and go. If you are having a party, or a get-together, call it that. Be sure that it is clear how much food to expect (ie cocktail party, dinner party, brunch, etc.), so people know to eat first or not.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Val55

                      I am throwing one in December And it will be called an open house. It's what most people call it when they ask me when I will do it....And I will welcome wine, but not gifts. Thanks Val for the suggestion to let people know about the kind of food that will be served (in my case-appetizers only plus drinks).