My wife and I just bought house and decided we needed our first pet as well. We have a 30 gallon tank with one oscar. We have quite a few hiding spots for him and he's already started 'adjusting' the gravel in the bottom. So far he's a little shy, but we're hoping as he gets used to his new world he'll start to venture out a little more. We've both had aquariums for years but this is our first cichlid. We have a topfin 30 filter and a heater, but based on a few posts we might add another filter.
I've had this 30 gallon since I was a kid and figure it was a good way to start since we already had it. The plan is get a large tank, 75 or so and get it built into our living room in the new house, then use the 30 gallon for a herd of smaller fish.