Houses are buildings with sleeping accommodations and containers that are safe for storing items. A house is available for purchase within many of the larger cities in Skyrim; however, permission must be obtained from the city's Jarl before their purchase. There are also a number of other properties throughout Skyrim that can be used as a home.
There is no limit to how many houses the Dragonborn may own. The Dragonborn can ask spouses to move into a house or choose to move into the spouse's house.
Benefits of owning a house
- Sleeping in the player's own house grants the Well Rested bonus. If the player sleeps in a house where their spouse also lives, the player will receive the bonus Lover's Comfort. However, under the effects of the Lycanthropy affliction or the having the Lover Stone active, the player cannot gain either of these bonuses.
- Containers in an owned house do not reset, so the player may safely store items inside any of its barrels, wardrobes and chests.
- Decorations can be bought for an owned house from the city's steward. Every house's kitchen includes a cooking pot or spit. The player may also purchase an Alchemy Lab for every house. Arcane Enchanters are available for every house except Breezehome in Whiterun.
List of purchasable houses
|Breezehome||Whiterun||5000||Purchased from Proventus Avenicci after completing the Bleak Falls Barrow quest or from Brill after taking Whiterun. Housecarl, Lydia|
8000 to 12000 †
|Purchased from Anuriel. The house must be purchased in order to gain the title of Thane. Housecarl, Iona|
|Vlindrel Hall||Markarth||8000||Purchased from Raerek after completing a number of quests for the Jarl (including the quest to Recover Hrolfdir's Shield, which can only be given after reaching level 20). Housecarl, Argis the Bulwark|
|Hjerim||Windhelm||8000 to 12000 †||Available after completing the Blood on the Ice quest (key can be obtained during the quest) and the Stormcloak or Imperial Army quest lines. Housecarl, Calder|
|Proudspire Manor||Solitude||25000||Available after completing a miscellaneous quest (named Elisif's Tribute) for the Jarl. Warning: Notoriously still plagued by bugs even after patch 1.3, not recommended to store weapons, armor, or items of any kind due to glitched containers, weapon racks, and mannequins. Housecarl, Jordis the Sword-Maiden|
† House may still be purchased as long as the player has a smaller amount of gold on hand. The cost will be all your gold up to the larger amount of gold.
The prices listed above are the initial costs for each house. This does not included the optional upgrades available for purchase. Refer to the relevant house article for further details.
Advantages and disadvantages
Breezehome, in Whiterun, is inexpensive and easily acquired early in the game, but it's the only home that lacks an enchanting table. It and Vlindrel Hall are the only homes that provide adequate storage in the alchemy room. In order to access an Arcane Enchanter in Whiterun, the player must exit Breezehome, then head to Dragonsreach, forcing the player to wait through two loading screens, as well as journey to the opposite side of the city. For members of the Thieves Guild, the fence in Whiterun is located outside of the city entirely, at Honningbrew Meadery, requiring fast-travel and extra transitions anytime the player wishes to move stolen goods.
HoneysideHoneyside, in Riften, is similarly inexpensive and can be acquired early in the game. Unlike Breezehome, it can be equipped with an enchanting table but has no Smelter within the city. The player must travel to the village of Shor's Stone to find one. Additionally, the Thieves Guild fence, Tonilia, is located in the Ragged Flagon, which requires a significant trip with three transitions to reach from the home.
Vlindrel HallVlindrel Hall, in Markarth, has both an alchemy table and enchanting table. Smithing amenities are available, including a Smelter, but are located across town. The fence in Markarth is located nearby, but moves around and sometimes requires a transition to reach. Vlindrel Hall has the disadvantage of having fewer armor storage mannequins than the other "higher-end" homes, having only one. Vlindrel Hall is a good choice for book collectors as it provides the most book storage, (162 books), thanks to three large bookshelves conveniently located next to each other instead of scattered smaller shelves such as in Hjerim.
Hjerim, in Windhelm, contains both an Arcane Enchanter and an Alchemy Lab (once upgraded), and is in close proximity to Smithing amenities, a Smelter, and the Windhelm fence, all of which are closely grouped with zero transitions. Niranye, the Windhelm fence, is located outside in a market stall, whereas every other fence, (except for Endon in Markarth, sometimes), requires at least one additional transition to reach. Lack of storage space is a concern, as is the very poor lighting in the hidden room containing the Alchemy and Enchanting areas. Hjerim also takes some of the most work to acquire, as the quest "Blood on the Ice" and part of the Civil War questline must be finished before purchasing the house.
Proudspire ManorProudspire Manor, in Solitude, is by far the most expensive home in the game. Solitude itself offers an average selection of shops, however they are located some distance away from the manor and there is no Smelter in this city. The Solitude fence is located nearby, but will require a transition to reach. One must buy this property to complete the quest No Stone Unturned as one of the Stones of Barenziah is in the bedroom area.
Hjerim can only be acquired upon progressing to a certain point in the Civil War questline while Vlindrel Hall cannot be acquired until at least level 20 and Proudspire Manor is prohibitively expensive for most low-level players. Breezehome and Honeyside are smaller, and each less convenient in some ways, but can be obtained much earlier in the game for the majority of players. Therefore, which house is most advantageous will likely depend upon playstyle and personal preference.
Faction housing are granted free of charge upon joining with a guild. Spouses cannot live with the Dragonborn at these locations unless the spouse is also a member, for instance Aela the Huntress and Onmund being members of the Companions and the College of Winterhold respectively.
The chest and barrel in Kodlak's Quarters in Jorrvaskr in Whiterun can reset, thus permanently deleting all items placed within them after a certain period of time. The wardrobe, cupboard and other containers do not, however.
|Hall of Attainment||
College of Winterhold
Available upon enrolling in the College of Winterhold.
The College of Winterhold
Available upon completing the The Eye of Magnus.
|Companion Quarters||Jorrvaskr, Whiterun||The Companions||Available upon joining the Companions.|
|Outside Falkreath||Dark Brotherhood||Available upon joining the Dark Brotherhood, (storing items here not recommended if planning to continue with the quest line.)|
Available after completing the quest Hail Sithis!
The Master Bedroom upgrade costs 3000 gold, purchased from Delvin Mallory, as part of a total of 19,000 gold upgrade of the sanctuary.
|Available upon completing the Glory of the Dead.|
Lord Harkon's Quarters
|Castle Volkihar||Volkihar Clan||Available after completing Kindred Judgement.|
|Nightingale Hall||Outside Riften||Thieves Guild||Available upon completing Darkness Returns.|
|Riften||Thieves Guild||Available upon joining the Thieves Guild.|
- See also: Marriage
The following is a list of all the possible spouses who own property and the conditions required to marry them.
|Ainethach||Karthwasten Hall||Karthwasten||Complete his favor.|
|Balimund||The Scorched Hammer||Riften||Complete his favor.|
|Erik the Slayer||Frostfruit Inn||Rorikstead||Complete his favor.|
|Filnjar||Filnjar's House||Shor's Stone||Complete his favor.|
|Gat gro-Shargakh||Pavo's House||Left Hand Mine||Complete his favor.|
|Revyn Sadri||Sadri's Used Wares||Windhelm||Complete his favor.|
|Romlyn Dreth||Romlyn Dreth's House||Riften||Complete his favor.|
|Vorstag||Silver-Blood Inn||Markarth||Hire him at least once|
|Perth||Miner's House||Reach||Complete his favor.|
|Aeri||Aeri's House||Anga's Mill||Complete her favor.|
|Avrusa Sarethi||Sarethi Farm||Sarethi Farm||Complete her favor.|
|Borgakh the Steel Heart||Larak's Longhouse||Mor Khazgur||Covince her to become a follower.|
|Camilla Valerius||Riverwood Trader||Riverwood||Complete The Golden Claw|
|Dravynea the Stoneweaver||Braidwood Inn||Kynesgrove||Complete her favor.|
|Gilfre||Gilfre's House||Mixwater Mill||Complete her favor.|
|Mjoll the Lioness||Aerin's House||Riften||Retrieve Grimsever for her.|
|Muiri||The Hag's Cure||Markarth||Complete Mourning Never Comes.|
|Sylgja||Sylgja's House||Shor's Stone||Complete her favor.|
|Uthgerd the Unbroken||Uthgerd's House||Whiterun||Defeat her in a brawl.|
|Viola Giordano||Viola Giordano's House||Windhelm||Begin Revyn Sadri’s favor, but inform Viola.|
|Ysolda||Ysolda's House||Whiterun||Bring her one Mammoth Tusk|
|Abandoned Shack||North of Morthal||
This is the shack where the player is taken to during the Dark Brotherhood quest: With Friends Like These... Only the chest is a safe container.
|Alchemist's Shack||South of Ivarstead||
A small shack with a working Alchemy Lab. The end table next to the bed is a safe container.
|Riverside Shack||South-west of Windhelm||A small shack that contains the half-eaten remains of the owner. Has one safe wardrobe, a Tanning Rack and a bed the player can sleep in.|
|Anise's Cabin||West of Whiterun||Once Anise is dead, the bed can be slept in and the storage areas may be used without danger of them being reset. Features an alchemy and enchanting table.|
Available after completion of The House of Horrors. All containers are safe and do not respawn.
|Alvor and Sigrid's House||Riverwood||Free||Available if Hadvar is followed during Unbound.|
|Faendal's House||Riverwood||Free||While Faendal is a follower. After dismissing him he will sometimes be found dead in the street this may be the reason the house has remained available. No containers have respawned in the couple of hundred hours of this playthrough (PC).|
|Goldenglow Estate||West of Riften||Free|
|Hod and Gerdur's House||Riverwood||Free||
Available if Ralof is followed during Unbound.
Sleeping Giant Inn, Riverwood
The secret room becomes available during A Blade in the Dark. The chest in the room is a non respawning container.
Buying a house unlocks the achievement/trophy Citizen. Acquiring one of the "free" houses does not unlock this achievement.
- needed to buy the house. Immediately after telling the steward, "I'll take it!", exit the conversation before he finishes talking, store all your gold in any nearby chest or drawer, and your gold will not be taken but you will still receive the key and trigger the ownership flag on the house. Can be used, for example, to acquire Proudspire Manor (and subsequently any other house you can work this exploit on).
An exploit can be used to acquire a house without losing gold; requires possession of the amount of
- Using the above exploit may cause weapon racks to become unusable.
- Placing items anywhere in a your house freely (ex. tables, dressers, etc.) will often result in the items ending up on the floor nearby upon re-entering the house, not including weapon racks, wall mounts, bookshelves, which are placed by activation. Bumping or otherwise moving items which were already placed in the house can also result in them being "unpinned" and free to be strewn about the house. In some cases, re-entering a house will result in a large number of items falling through tables, flying off shelves and otherwise making a huge mess (especially in Breezehome), making this a nightmare for players demanding neatness in their home. The housecarl, unfortunately, does not include cleaning in their list of duties to their Thane.
- In Hjerim, Vlindrel Hall and Honeyside the mannequins can glitch so if the armor is taken off the mannequin, if the player re-enters the house, the armor has been duplicated and will be on the mannequin. This glitch can be used for income, since the armor can be sold.
- Sanguine Rose and Wabbajack, when put in the weapon racks, will be stored upside down. The Axe of Whiterun, when put in weapon racks, will be stored perpendicular to the wall. Sometimes
- If books are placed on a bookshelf in player's home, then read and taken, player will be unable to activate the bookshelf again. Seemingly the only solution is loading a previous autosave.
- Mannequins, weapon racks, weapon plaques, and display cases may bug in differing ways. In all houses, mannequins can become transparent, but putting a necklace on them, exiting the activation screen, and taking it off can fix it temporarily. Racks, plaques, and display cases may all lose their ability to be activated. One known temporary solution is to punch the bugged piece of furniture until the option to 'activate' reappears.
- Sometimes when a house is purchased, the items inside will not be in players ownership, so every item will have the "steal" option instead of "take," and taking them will be considered stealing by onlookers.
- Many pointed out bugs, like mannequins, weapon racks and dagger displays not working properly, can be avoided by buying the house and all upgrades at once and then entering the purchased and upgraded house. Although, some minor bugs are still present like mannequins becoming transparent or player's items put in the house can be found scattered all over.
- Sometimes one of the bookshelves will turn invisible. This is only a visual bug/glitch. Could be caused by having books on said shelf when completing a whole quest line. Taking everything off the bookshelf then exiting and reentering the house fixes this. Might only affect the bookshelf right near the entrance in Breezehome and the Companions quest.