Buying a home is an exciting time for both new home buyers and experienced buyers alike. It is a fresh start, with new walls to build your life within. However, once the move begins, things can feel stressful, frantic, and exhausting, especially if there’s extra work to be done while boxes are being piled one on top of another. To make your transition go smoothly, we have compiled a list of 6 things to do before settling into your home. This will undoubtedly save you time and energy that could be put to better use come moving day.
Update Your Information
Before officially moving into your new home, you should begin updating your address on your driver’s license, OHIP card, banking information, and any other services that require your place of residence on file. Additionally, you will want to inform your insurance providers to ensure that your home insurance is transferred and appropriate for your new home coverage. You will also want to touch base with utility companies before you move so that your home has electricity and gas set up under your accounts. Lastly, have any internet, phone, or television service providers in to get your systems up and running, primarily if you rely on a good connection to work from home. See here for a change of address checklist, to ensure you don’t miss informing anyone.
Make Your New Home Shine
Before the big day comes, set aside some time or hire a company to complete a deep clean of the home. Ensure high-touch surfaces are disinfected, carpets are steam-cleaned, appliances are cleaned out, and that every nook and cranny is spotless and ready for a new life. If the home’s colours aren’t in line with your decor or aesthetic, or you want to rid the home of any lingering smells from pets or smoke, take this time to add a fresh coat of paint to the walls. By the time you move in, it will feel like you were the first family ever to own the home, and the hustle of moving-day will be a breeze.
Make a home maintenance schedule
Home maintenance should never be something you skip on when it comes to homeownership. Keeping a regular schedule will ultimately help you protect your investment, and hopefully, minimize any high-cost repairs you may have to do. You can begin the work for this as early as your home inspection report comes in, as it might contain suggestions for work or repairs that should be completed.
Create and organize a filing system for any manuals or instructions, with clear outlines on how frequently you should have large items or appliances serviced or replaced and when to conduct seasonal maintenance. This is also an excellent opportunity to do your research and find a list of local plumbers, electricians, exterminators, landscapers, or snow removal companies that you may need to use in the future.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
It is good practice for every homeowner to frequently check both smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are in good working order. Before moving into your home, checking or replacing existing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors or their batteries should be one of the first items to check off your list. Home Safety experts recommend changing the batteries every 6 months, so make sure to mark it on your calendar for semi-annual maintenance to be completed. If you are unsure how to test your systems, your local fire department may have some tips or offer free inspections.
Change Your Locks
Getting keys in hand for your new home on closing day is easily one of the best feelings when buying a new house. Everything is real, and a new adventure is about to begin. But for safety reasons, the passing on of keys should stay ceremonial. You never know how many copies of your house keys have been made and how many people may still have them in hand. This can be an easy fix by installing new deadbolts yourself or by calling a locksmith in to do it for you. Make sure if you get copies made that you only give them to necessary persons, and write them down, so you don’t lose track.
Get Familiar With Your Home
Once you become a homeowner, it is essential to get familiar with the systems in your home. Take the time to understand how everything works. Locate the furnace, air conditioning system, circuit breaker, and the home’s main water shut-off valve. Take note of these things during your walkthrough with your REALTOR ® or home inspector, and once in your home, inspect them yourself or hire someone to do a secondary inspection with you so that you know how best to care for your home and protect your investment.