Congrats and warm wishes on your first home! Just like that you, you are a real estate jedi and are crushing this whole adulting thing! You’ve found the perfect home for your beautiful family and are a homeowner in the making. It’s exciting to think ahead about moving in and starting your new life there as soon as possible. Happy memories are right around the corner! Your move and transition will be a whole lot easier if you spend some time planning it out, and consider some of the important aspects of setting up your new home. The end goal is to officially make it into “home sweet home”! Don’t forget to mail out a new home card greeting card and also to make plans for a housewarming party once you are ready to celebrate the occasion with your loved ones. Housewarming wishes and housewarming gifts go a long way towards making you feel right at home. So soak up all those housewarming cards and congratulations messages with love and joy right from the start!
All too often, new homeowners make the move into their new home for the first time, and then discover that they overlooked a ton of to-do items that need to be done in order to make the house livable and ultimately a happy new home. Unfortunately, this can lead to a lot of frustration — and a lot of wasted time and money.
To help you avoid that fate, here are a few things to keep in mind when embarking on this new adventure of setting up your home.
Do a walkthrough of your new home
Before you’ve moved all your belongings into your new home, do a walkthrough to make sure nothing is broken or missing. Here are a few questions to ask yourself during this process:
- Are all the appliances in working order? Test out all the major appliances to make sure they’re working correctly. Make sure everything in the house is accounted for and in good shape.
- Are the windows and doors functioning properly? Check the doors and windows to make sure they close and lock properly. You should also call a locksmith and get new locks.
- Are all the lights working? Flip all the switches to make sure that the lights work. While you’re at it, make sure all the lightbulbs are the same.
- Does the plumbing work correctly? Run the water in all the sinks and tubs to make sure there are no leaks. The last thing you want is water damage during your first few weeks at your new house.
- Are the heating and air conditioning systems in good shape? Check to make sure that the temperature in your home is comfortable. Ideally, your home inspector should verify this before you make a deal since these systems don’t come cheap.
- Check the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Push the test button on all of the smoke detectors to make sure they are working. You just spent a lot of money on the transaction, and you deserve the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re safe.
- Look for any safety hazards. Make sure there are no loose wires, nails, or other safety hazards in your new home. Getting injured in your new home isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time.
- Take note of any damages. If there are any damages in the home, make a note of them so you can have them fixed. Welcome to homeownership!
As you can see, doing a house walkthrough when moving into a new home makes a heck of a lot of sense. By checking everything out, you can make sure that your home is in perfect condition and all your belongings are safe. If there are any problems or issues, you can address them right away, before the big move — before someone is hurt or your house gets damaged further.
House walkthroughs are especially important if you have small children or pets because it lets you rest comfortably knowing there isn’t anything dangerous in the home.
Create your new home to-do list
Having a to-do checklist is a great way to help you stay organized during the hard work of the moving process. You can start creating this list during your initial walkthrough. It will ensure that you don’t forget anything important that needs to be done before and after you move.
A to-do list will also help you prioritize what needs to be done and when. Ultimately, you won’t be able to take care of everything on your list at once, so it’s important to schedule things out over time.
Here are some things to consider including on your checklist:
- Scheduling utilities to be turned on/off, including cable, internet/wifi, electricity, and heating oil, among other things
- Packing and unpacking all belongings
- Arranging for furniture to be moved
- Changing your address with the post office
- Hiring professional movers or procuring a rental truck
- Planning out what furniture goes into which rooms
Of course, there are other important items to add to your checklist. Be sure to include anything that is specific to your move and needs.
Check your home’s security
If you’re moving into a new home, it’s important to assess the security of the property as soon as possible.
No matter how secure your new home is, there are always ways to improve it. For example, you can change the locks on all doors and windows, install a home security system, and add outdoor lighting. These are all great ways to deter burglars and keep your family safe. By taking these precautions, you can rest assured that your new home is safe and secure.
Set up your internet (and other utilities)
While this should be on your new home to-do list, it’s so important that it deserves its own section, too.
When you move into a new home, one of the first things you should do is set up your internet. This is a fairly simple process, but it’s important to do it as soon as possible so you can start using your internet right away.
Most internet providers will require you to set up an account and tell them your new address. Then, you’ll schedule an appointment with a technician who will come within a certain window of time. Depending where you live, this process can sometimes take weeks. As such, you should contact your internet provider as far in advance as possible to schedule an appointment when you know you’ll be moved in.
In addition to your internet, you’ll also need to set up your electricity. To do this, contact your local electricity provider and set up an account. Some electricity providers require you to pay a deposit before they turn on your service. To avoid getting caught off guard with a surprise fee, be sure to ask about this when you’re setting up your account.
Do a deep clean of your home
Before moving all of your belongings into your new home, you probably should spend some time inspecting the cleanliness of it and doing a deep clean if necessary. After all, you’re probably not keen on living in a mess someone else created — especially since you’ve just given them a ton of money.
By doing a deep clean, you can rid your new home of any dirt, dust, or grime that may have been left behind. If you have time, it’s also a good idea to wash all the windows and curtains — or, if you have room in the budget, hiring professionals to do this for you.
By cleaning your new house thoroughly before you get settled in, you will start fresh in your new home and ensure that it’s comfortable for you and your family.
Check for damages and make repairs as needed
As you’re doing your deep cleaning, check for any damages or issues that may need to be repaired. This may include things like holes in the walls, chipped paint, loose tiles, running toilets, or cracked windows.
If you notice any damages, make a list of them so you can repair them before moving your belongings in. This will help you avoid any further damages and make sure your home stays in good condition — protecting your investment.
Paint and refinish as needed
Before you fully settle into your new home, you have a great opportunity to repaint rooms and refinish any flooring while the spaces are empty.
Take advantage of this time to repaint every room, touch up your trim, and refurbish or replace worn-out floors and carpets. This is especially important if the home has carpeting that is heavily soiled or dated in any way.
In some cases, you may decide to completely redo the floors — especially if there are extensive repairs or damages that you did not notice while you were moving in.
Consider the flooring
When you first move into a new home, it’s also a good time to consider the kind of flooring you want. Are you keeping the existing flooring? Or might it be time to install new flooring?
If the home has old carpeting, it might be time to replace it. Installing carpet flooring in homes can help enhance the warmth and style of your home. Carpet provides a soft surface to walk or stand on and adds a sense of warmth to your home. It is also a great choice for basements to brighten and warm the space.
In some instances, you may prefer ripping up carpeting and replacing it with wood flooring, tiles, or vinyl plank flooring that looks like wood. Whatever you decide, it’s much easier to update flooring before you’ve moved all your furniture and belongings into your new home.
Make sure you have everything you need to live comfortably
Once all of that is taken care of, it’s time to set up your home with everything you need to live comfortably. Things like blinds, good lighting, air conditioning, and adequate heating are all elements that go a long way toward making your house a comfortable place to live.
This is also a good time to go through and update older or outdated light fixtures with more modern options that may better suit your style and preferences. For example, you may look to move away from more conventional lighting systems toward LED options that cost less and are better for the environment.
New Home Wishes
At this point, you’ve studied the ins and outs of your beautiful new home and have done what needed to be done to prime the space for you and your family. Best wishes throughout the entire process!
Now, it’s time to get unpacking and start settling into your new place. After the long, bumpy home buying and moving process, you deserve to sit back and enjoy everything your new space has to offer.
Good luck and welcome to your lovely home and fresh start! Enjoy all the happy and new memories you and yours make there, and don’t forget to take the time to properly introduce yourself to your new neighbors after you move in. Your new beginning can be even more rewarding with the right support system of those immediately around you, in addition to your family members and friends.