Whether you’re buying your first home or this is the tenth time you’ve moved in a decade, it’s important for you to have a plan for exactly what you’ll do after closing and moving in. Being systematic and purposeful in your approach will prove to be enormously helpful.
Seven Post-Move-In Tips to Try
Buying a house and moving into it is a stressful operation. Did you know that the average person ranks it among the most stressful life events?
According to a recent research study, some 70 percent of people say selling a house is stressful, and 69 percent find buying a house physically and emotionally taxing. For perspective, this makes it the second most-stressful event after divorce (78 percent).
It beats arranging care for an elderly relative (68 percent), having a child (53 percent), changing jobs (49 percent), and getting married (40 percent). One of the reasons buying a house can be so stressful is that the process never seems to end.
First you look for homes, then you put in offers, then you close on a residencee, and then you actually have to move in and start the process of tackling dozens and dozens of big and small tasks on site.
But moving in shouldn’t be as stressful as some of the other steps in the process. Once you’ve walked away from the closing table and are physically settled in your new home, here are seven action steps you can take to lower the hassle.
1. Get Your Utilities Up and Running
In order to keep your utilities running and enjoy water, electricity, gas, etc., you’ll have to call the utility providers. “To be safe, it’s best to contact the new provider at least two weeks before your actual move-in date,” real estate expert Diane Schmidt advises.
“While many utility companies can do a three to five-day turnaround, some will need at least a week to ten days in order to get things set up. It all depends on when you move — during peak moving season, such as summer months, the wait-time for services will be longer.”
If for some unfortunate reason you’ve forgotten to call, this is the very first thing you’ll need to do. Not only is it crucial to have access to water and electricity, but moving immediately may also save an expensive reconnection fee.
2. Take Inventory of All Boxes and Furniture
Ideally, you did a good job of keeping track of how many boxes and pieces of furniture you had when you vacated your previous home. After moving in (and preferably while the movers are still there), take inventory of all the big items to make sure nothing is missing.
3. Perform a Deep Clean
“Cleaning a house before you move in is the ideal way to go, since you won’t have the added difficulty of needing to work around a bunch of furniture and boxes,” Moving.com notes.
“But if you have to wait until after you move that’s fine — just don’t skip the clean entirely. The same goes for if a cleaning crew came through prior to you getting the keys. This is one corner you just don’t want to cut.”
Sweeping floors and vacuuming is super easy when there’s nothing in the way, and so is wiping down countertops and cleaning bathrooms. A helpful pointer is to clean high before you clean low. Gravity brings everything toward the floor, so adopting this order of attack will enable you to avoid having to perform unnecessary labor.
4. Make a Priority List
There may be plenty of property-specific tasks you’ll have to address after the move. These may include renovation projects, painting of walls, replacement of hardware, fixing a problem in the basement, and notifying the postal service of your new address.
With so many chores on your plate, it’s not hard to grow overwhelmed. To provide direction and set yourself at ease, make a to-do list that’s ranked by priority.
5. Unpack the Basics
You don’t have to unpack everything at once, nor should you. Start by taking out the basic essentials only. This would include bedding, basic cookware, tools you’ll need for home projects, clothing, and toiletries.
Everything else can wait at least a few days. By unpacking in stages rather than doing everything at once, you’ll give yourself room to move around and get settled.
6. Locate Important Features and Systems
Before getting too far along in your move-in process, it’s a sharp idea to locate all the structure’s key systems and components. If you haven’t already, walk around your new home and identify the main circuit breaker, water heater, AC and furnace units (if applicable), the main water shutoff valve, dryer vents, alarm panels, motion sensors, fire extinguishers, and entry points.
Knowing where all of these are will not only make you more familiar with the property, but it could also prove to be a lifesaver in certain situations.
7. Replace These Parts
When you buy a home that someone else owned, you can expect to encounter some wear and tear. Most of this can be left as is or handled over time.
Certain parts or elements should be dealt with as soon as possible, however. Locks are the first point of concern.
Though the previous owner handed over his or her keys at closing, you can never be certain how many copies of the keys are out there (and which persons the last owner gave them to). So it’s best to replace all the locks and change the keys.
Second, it’s wise to replace all the toilet seats. At a price point of just $10 or $15, there’s no reason to use the same seats the previous owners sat on for years.
Green Residential: Houston’s Real Estate Leader
When it comes to real estate, nobody knows the Houston market better than the friendly and experienced team at Green Residential. Since we have more than 25 years in the business, we command the resources, skills, and knowledge necessary to help our clients manage almost any aspect of home buying, home selling, and property management.
To find out more, please contact us at your earliest convenience