Moving is always an arduous and demanding task. Since you probably don’t have time to read a lengthy introduction, let’s get right to the point. If you are feeling overwhelmed, you might want to consider using our handy checklist. After you have bought a house, we recommend that you do the following before you take up residence.
Step 1: Do Any Necessary Repairs
As part of the home buying process, you should have had at least one inspection done. If you failed to do this, you have made a serious mistake. If any problems were found during your previous inspections, you should carry out the necessary repairs without delay. After that, it might be wise to get one more inspection just to make sure you are up to code. This can save you money on fines in the long run.
Step 2: Make A Few Improvements (Optional)
For this article, we are assuming that you have bought a pre-owned home. As such, there may be one or two things that you wish to add or change. If you can afford to do so, now is the best time. Many people will probably choose to omit this step for now so that they can have time to recover from the large expenditure they have just made.
Step 3: Turn On The Utilities
This one is definitely not optional. Although you won’t be moving into your new home just yet, you will probably be spending a lot of time there. Without water and electricity, you won’t be able to turn on the lights, and you won’t be able to use the bathroom. Since both of these things are essential, go ahead and get those utilities turned on right away.
Once everything is up and running, you should conduct some basic tests and maintenance. Start by changing your HVAC filter (if you have one). Buy a new thermometer and check it against the thermostat to make sure that it’s working properly. Buy a water quality test kit and make sure that your plumbing system isn’t leaching anything into the water.
Step 4: Change Your Address
You should stop by the nearest post office and put in for a change of address. It can take a while for these changes to become fully integrated, so you might as well take care of it now. If you don’t want to bother with waiting in a line at the local post office, you can take care of it online.
Step 5: Get The Place Sprayed For Bugs
There is a good chance that you already got a pest inspection at some point. When evaluating a home, this is always a good idea. However, a lot of people skip this inspection to save on their overall cost.
Either way, you should go ahead and have the place sprayed for pests. It’s a relatively small expense when you consider the amount of damage that pests can do to your home. Termites alone cause billions of dollars worth of damages every year. If your new house has a known pest problem, you might consider bug-bombing the whole place.
Step 6: Clean Everything
After you have had the house sprayed for bugs, it’s time to give everything a thorough cleaning. If you used a bug bomb approach, you would have to begin by thoroughly removing the residue that remains. If you have pets or small children, this is especially important.
Either way, it’s hard to say what the previous occupant might have done in that house, and they may not have thoroughly cleaned the whole place before moving. We would recommend cleaning the whole place from top to bottom with some strong antiseptic cleaners.
Step 7: Painting
Now it’s time to re-paint. In most cases, pre-owned homes will have at least a few places that require a touch-up job. Even if the paint looks good, you might want to repaint the place as a way to make it suit your style. You might simply dislike the color of the walls or trim, and it isn’t that much trouble to take care of it right now.
Step 8: Check The Pipes
Chances are, the plumbing has already been inspected before the point of sale. However, those inspections are mostly checking for basic functionality. You can find out a lot more by taking a closer look (or hiring someone else to do so). Many older homes will be fitted with copper pipes that are extremely problematic.
While new copper pipes work great, old copper pipes will tend to expand in the cold. This often results in burst pipes and big leaks. Thus, copper pipes should be replaced, either with new copper or PVC.
Step 9: Make A Floor Plan
At this point, you shouldn’t have any major issues holding you back. Still, it’s good to organize things before you start moving. Draw out a rough map of your home, using a different sheet of paper for each floor. Using this map, mark out the uses to which each room will be put. Some things, like kitchens and bathrooms, are obvious and require no debate.
Other things might not be so obvious. Everyone in your home will need a bedroom, and that will probably leave you with a limited amount of space in which to get creative. That’s all the more reason to make a plan and clear it with everyone in your household.
Step 10: Start Moving
Now you just have to carry out the process of moving. This could be an entire article in itself, but it all comes down to these simple steps:
- Pack your things, making sure to use padded boxes for fragile items
- Arrange for transport of everything in your home that you want to keep
- Unpack and arrange according to the floor plan
It really is that simple. After going through the process of buying a home and the previous nine steps, this one should be a piece of cake.