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    Unfurnished House Checklist: Essential Items for Your New Home

    By The reallymoving Team Updated 26th Jun, 2024

    Reviewed by Emily Smith

    From packing to getting keys cut, there’s a lot to think about when you’re moving to a new place – but have you thought about what you need to buy?

    Unfurnished House Checklist: Essential Items for Your New Home
    Moving into an unfurnished place is exciting – whether you’re renting or buying, it’s a blank canvas that you can make your own.

    However, it can also be incredibly overwhelming. You might feel like there’s too much you need to buy (especially if you’re moving out on your own for the first time), and you might be worried you’re going to forget something.
    The pain with things like this is that you only remember you need something when you need to use them right there and then.

    Fear not – we’ve got a complete list of everything you might need to buy to make it through at least the first few weeks in your new home, sorted by room.


    The bedroom (or at least part of it) is the first thing you’ll need to set up when you move in. It doesn’t matter if the kitchen’s a mess, but if you haven’t got anywhere to sleep after an exhausting day of moving and unpacking, you’ll kick yourself!

    Here's everything you might need to buy for the bedroom:
    • Bed frame

    • Mattress

    • Bedding (mattress topper, sheets, duvet, duvet cover, pillows and pillowcases)

    • Bedside table

    • Lighting

    • Curtains (these may well be included even in an unfurnished property, but it’s definitely worth checking to make sure your first night’s sleep is a restful one!)

    • Clothing storage (don’t forget clothes hangers if you’re opting for a wardrobe)

    • Laundry bin

    • Rubbish bin

    • Mirror

    Living room

    Arguably the second most important room to get sorted after your move, this is where you’ll get cosy for your first night in your new home – so make sure it’s ready to go.
    • Sofa(s) and armchair(s)

    • Coffee table (you may think you won’t need this, but you don’t want to be eating and drinking from the floor)

    • TV and cable box

    • Storage (bookshelves, a shoe rack, an ottoman – whatever you need so that your belongings aren’t just piled up in the corner!)

    • Curtains (again, they might be included, but you should check)

    • Lighting

    • Furnishings, like rugs or cushions


    Although not particularly important at this stage, organising your bathroom is often one of the quickest jobs, so there’s something to be said for getting it out the way.
    • Shower curtain (there may already be one or a guard of some kind, but you’ll want a long hot shower at the end of moving day, so make sure you have one or you’ll have to mop the floor afterwards!)

    • Bath matt

    • Bathroom essentials e.g. shampoo, conditioner, toilet roll, and bodywash

    • Towels

    • Toilet brush

    • Bathroom bin

    • Storage for toiletries


    Bear with us – this is the longest list, but it’s all essential.


    • Table and chairs

    • Kitchen bin


    • Kettle

    • Microwave

    • Toaster

    • Fridge and freezer (if you’re moving into rented accommodation these will almost always be included, even if says ‘unfurnished’, but do check)


    • Full set of dishes (mugs, glasses, cutlery, and plates and bowls of assorted sizes)

    • Pots and pans (at least one frying pan, a saucepan, a stockpot and an oven dish/tray)

    • Utensils (knives, chopping boards, measuring spoons, spatula or wooden spoon, serving spoons, whisk, mixing bowl, colander, bottle opener, can opener and kitchen scissors)

    • Drying rack

    • Tea towels

    • Oven gloves

    • Washing up equipment

    The hallway

    • Doormat (the last thing you want is dirt trodden through your newly cleaned home!)

    • Coat stand/hooks

    Other handy things

    As well as this list, here are some other things it’s useful to have on moving day.
    • Toolkit for assembling furniture

    • Stool or small stepladder (for reaching high cupboards)

    • Cleaning supplies (including a hoover)

    • Extension leads and other electricals

    • Simple first aid kit

    • Food to tide you over until you can do a big food shop (you probably won’t want to do this shop until the kitchen is sorted)

    Bear in mind that ‘unfurnished’ doesn’t necessarily mean the place will come with nothing – often it will have white goods, as well as things like curtains and built-in storage. But always check before moving day.

    How to furnish a new property on a budget

    Furnishing a whole unfurnished property can be expensive, but there are ways to cut back on the costs.
    • Check online second-hand websites such as Facebook marketplace and Gumtree

    • Check charity shops for furniture and kitchen supplies

    • Look out for seasonal sales

    • Prioritise essential items of furniture and wait to purchase non-essential items

    Once you have the essential items there’s no need to rush furnishing the rest of your property. You can take your time to design your home the way you want.

    And then you’re done! Now it’s time to put it all together and unpack your stuff. It will take some time, but soon enough your new place will feel like home.

    For more checklists to take you through the moving process, check out our complete Moving House Checklist.

    Unfurnished house checklist FAQs

    What should be included in an unfurnished property? 

    When purchasing, there is no requirement for the property to come with anything. You should check before moving in what exactly the property comes with.
    An unfurnished rental property should usually include white goods and fixtures.

    Does an empty house sell better than a furnished house?

    Usually, a furnished house will sell faster than an unfurnished house. If the house is furnished during house viewings it can help buyers to visualise what the property will look like lived in.

    Updated May 2024

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