Buying a home is an exciting and often whirlwind process. Once the negotiations, inspections, repairs and waiting are finally over, there are still a few more things to do to make your new house the perfect home. Creating a plan and collecting a few essential items to simplify the moving process will make your first few days in your new place so much more enjoyable!
1. Bring the essentials: What do toilet paper, a first aid kit, toolbox, water and snacks all have in common? They are all items you will be very happy that you have with you on your first day in your (empty) new home.
2. Change the locks: There’s no telling how many people have a key to the current locks on your home, or who has a code to your garage or front door. Change all of the locks and codes for safety and peace of mind.
3. Forward mail and update your address: This is a big one that only works if you complete both parts. It’s easy to forward your mail to your new address and then forget to actually update your address, but mail forwarding service only lasts for up to twelve months. Once you’re somewhat settled in your new space, don’t forget to update your address with important institutions such as your bank, charities, subscriptions and of course friends and relatives.
4. Test your detectors: Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they’re working to properly protect your new home. Both devices should have a test button to try them out; if something doesn’t seem to be working, buy some fresh batteries or try a smart product like the Nest Protect.
5. Make an annual home maintenance plan: It’s likely that some of the major mechanicals in your home were serviced before you closed, such as the HVAC. Make a list of the last time everything was serviced, based on what was done leading up to your purchase or what was listed in the seller’s disclosure, and make a calendar for routine maintenance. Don’t forget to add things like cleaning the gutters, changing the air filter and clearing out the dryer vent.
6. Make a list of home service providers: Nothing is worse than an unexpected home emergency when you don’t know who to call. Of course you can always call me, but I would love to share my exclusive list of trusted vendors that I know will take care of you when you need them. A plumber, an HVAC tech and an electrician are all good people to have at the top of your list!