I vividly remember moving in to our new home and the joy and excitement that came along with it. We were home owners! It all seemed surreal. But along with the joy and excitement came stress and regret...there seemed to be so many things we could have doneto make the process much smoother. If you're thinking about buying a home, or are about to move in to one, here are ten things to consider (and do) before bringing in the boxes:
1. Send out moving cards
(something like this would be adorable) and visit the post office to change your address. You also may want to visit the DMV and get the address changed on your driver's license. If you're planning on being in your home for a while, these return address stamps are lovely.
2. Label your breaker box
Whether you're moving into a brand new home or an old one, labeling which outlets go to which breaker switch may come in handy sooner than you think!
3. Measure the rooms and doorways
(some furniture may not fit!) We failed to do this and our couch barely made the cut! If you do this beforehand, you'll save yourself from unwanted stress.
4. Install window treatments
We've got two very large windows in our front room and it took us a few weeks to get up window treatments. Those were some of the most awkward weeks of my life! Save yourself the embarrassment of having your new neighbors spying on your family dinner. Take a few minutes to put up some blinds. If you can't decide what you want, purchase something cheap for a temporary fix.
5. Have your home inspected
This is another thing we failed to do when we bought our home (that was built in the 1920s!) Yes, we were rookies. But that is the point of this article, to save you from doing what we did! If we had gotten an inspection, we would have found out that we had mold growing everywhere in the bathroom; something we could have negotiated with the sellers.
6. Check all the light switches and outlets to make sure everything is in working condition
My parents built their dream house two years ago and figured that since everything was new, everything would work. They moved in during the winter time so there was no need for their bedroom fan. It wasn't until the next summer they found out that the switch to their fan had a faulty connection.
7. Run your dishwasher through a cycle and check the drains in your tub and sinks
A leak is something that you definitely want to discover before moving into your new home.
8. Take before and after pictures!
Especially if it's a fixer-upper. It astonishes me that I saw potential in our home every time I see pictures from when we first bought it. It has come a long way. But because we have evidence of what it looked like when we first stepped foot in our house, it makes the stories we tell to our family and friends all the more real!
9. Change the locks on all exterior doors and have new keys made
You never know how many keys have been distributed to your new home. Your local home improvement store will know just what to do.
10. Deep clean!
It's always easier to clean before all of the boxes arrive. Wash windows, walls, floors, kitchen appliances, and the bathrooms. You may also want to consider cleaning the carpets and spraying for pests and/or rodents. You can never be too prepared.
If you are feeling ambitious (and not too tired from the above suggestions), go out and meet your new neighbors.
Moving in can be stressful but with a little planning and organization, the transition can go much smoother than you may think. Good luck and be sure to thank all those who help out with the packing and the moving!