Move in checklist for new homeowners
All of your belongings are packed away in boxes, and the time has come to say hello to your new home!
Use this handy checklist to help you before you get settled in:
1. Perform a final survey of the home
Before you take the keys, walk through the home, keeping a lookout for potential warning signs. This step is especially important if you're moving into an older property that has had previous owners. Check the plumbing, wiring, appliances, attic, basement, floors, walls, ceilings and so on. If you find any damage or want to make home improvements, it’ll be easier to complete major repairs and upgrades prior to moving in.
2. Get to know your spaces
Locate important equipment, such as the main water shutoff valve and circuit breaker panel. Both are usually in the basement or garage and will be important for future maintenance, DIY projects and home emergencies.
3. Make sure insulation is up to par
Insulation is vital for living in an energy-efficient home that can keep your spaces at comfortable living temperatures. Proper insulation can also lower your heating and cooling costs, so make sure your home has the right amount of insulation. The attic and exposed pipes are most important, but you can also add extra insulation to the exterior walls, basement, crawl spaces and ducts located in unconditioned spaces. This guide from the Department of Energy will help you determine the type and amount of insulation your home requires.
4. Set the right temperatures
The optimum temperature for your water heater is 120 degrees Fahrenheit, so make sure it's set properly. Consider installing a programmable thermostat if the home doesn't already have one. You can set the thermostat to suit your routine, such as dropping a few degrees at night while you sleep and turning it off during the day while you're at work. That way, your cooling and heating systems can run as efficiently as possible. You can also install ceiling fans in the rooms you plan to use most frequently to help with low-energy air circulation.
5. Update your accounts
Don't forget to change your address on important accounts, including insurance, bank accounts, credit cards, subscriptions and memberships. Make sure your utility providers (like gas and electricity companies), plus your cable and internet providers, are aware of your move. Most can easily transfer your accounts to the new address as long as you're moving within the service area.
6. Give your new home a deep clean
Start off on the right foot by cleaning all of your spaces before loading them up with your belongings. Alternatively, consider hiring a professional cleaning service to freshen up the house before you move in.
7. Consider energy-efficient upgrades
Replace old or nonworking light bulbs and appliances with energy saving models. While the upfront costs may seem steep, they save you money on all of your monthly bills going forward. Similarly, buy smart power strips that save energy even when electronics are plugged in.
8. Create seasonal home maintenance checklists
Much like your wardrobe changes with the seasons, your home requires certain upkeep to prepare it for the differences in weather. Plus, the seasons are an easy way to remember when to perform annual maintenance projects. Here are home maintenance checklists for spring and fall to get you started.
9. Sign up for a home repair plan
It's a smart decision for new homeowners to be prepared in case of emergencies. Plans from HomeServe can help with the costs of covered emergency repairs to your heating and cooling, plumbing and electrical systems.
Time for the housewarming party! Enjoy your new home with the confidence that everything is in tip-top shape.