So you finally got through all of the loan documents, closed on your property, and got the keys to your new house… what do you do next?
The home buying process can be an intensive and overwhelming experience and in a continued effort to be of service to our clients we’ve prepared a short list to ease your transition and help you settle into your new home.
Setup the Utilities If you’re moving into a pre-owned/existing home, get the contact information from your agent for all of the utility companies. You will need to have the basic services transferred into your name for the day of possession and before you move in. The ones you need to contact include electricity, gas, sewer, and water. If you’re looking to save time and money on your home utilities services and their setup we recommend OneSource Solutions Home Connections. For a overview on the services One Source Solutions provides watch this quick video.
Request a Change of Address This can be done online at www.usps.com/umove or you can stop by any local post office and complete their Official Change of Address Form. You may want to notify your employer, contact your bank, creditors as well as any magazines that you subscribe to directly so that they’re aware of the move and you don’t miss a pay check, statement, issue, or a bill.
Check your Street Number Make sure that your house’s street number is clearly visible from the road, especially if you’re expecting a moving truck and/or delivery truck shortly after the move.
Clean Start Another great way to take advantage of your still-empty abode is to give it a deep clean. Even if the seller did clean, they may have done a poor job. Cleaning the floors, baseboards and windows will never be this easy again — you’ll have unhindered access to everything. Think about it: no curtains to take down, no rugs or furniture to move. And don’t stop there. You can wipe down all the countertops, shelves and drawers — replacing shelf paper if necessary. Run a phantom load in the dishwasher, clean out the oven if it needs it, and don’t forget the refrigerator and freezer. If possible, hire a cleaning service to help you get it all done. If you aren’t able to do the cleaning prior to unloading the moving van, hiring a cleaning service will be even more helpful.
Got Keys? Great Now Change the Locks We strongly recommend buyers change the locks and reset any key code combinations that can be used to gain entry to the house. Garage door opener, garage key pads and alarm combinations should be changed. You never know who has an old set of keys to your new house (a pervious baby sitter, house keeper, lawn care people, dog sitter, etc.) You want to make sure no one unauthorized can gain entry.
Some locks don’t need to be completely replaced—sometimes your local locksmith can reset the drums of the locks so they work with a new key, saving you money vs. buying a new lock set. If you decided to buy locks or change cylinders make sure that all outside locks can be opened with a single key by buying the same sets. This will help you avoid dragging 3-4 keys around your key chain for many years to come.
If you didn’t receive all of the garage door opener remotes, some newer cars include a HomeLink System which can be programed with certain garage door openers to learn the signal from the garage door units. You can then operate the overhead door from one of 3 little buttons located on your car’s rear view mirror. If you can program your car to open the garage door(s) you will save money on buying additional units not to mention future batteries too!
Check the Smoke Detectors Find all the smoke detectors and test them all. If you don’t feel the home is adequately covered with them (at least one on every floor of the home), install some more as quickly as possible. Similarly, make sure there’s a carbon monoxide detector in the home.
Have the HVAC equipment cleaned and serviced Your home inspector is likely to noted if the HVAC system required cleaning. If the system hasn’t recently been serviced do this as soon as you close on the house. Getting the heating and cooling systems cleaned and other routine tasks done is important.
We’ve always had good luck asking our new neighbors which company they have found to be reputable and attentive for this work. It’s also a great way to meet the neighbors.
Install window treatments If you purchased a new home chances are window coverings weren’t included. If you purchased an existing home the sellers may have requested they be permitted to remove some of the window coverings. Whether you have these custom made or you go for some inexpensive and temporary shades, you’ll want to get some something on your windows — both for privacy and that finishing touch. These window coverings will not only provide visual appeal and cover, but also enhance energy efficiency.
Reconsider the Inspection Report If you purchased an existing home the home inspection likely revealed some items that required attention and/or repairs. While the seller may have agreed to make some of these repairs, chances are some remain. Right after the closing is a good time to review the report, repair any deficiencies, and make any improvements the inspector recommended. The after-purchase task is to tackle the checklist.
New homeowners should set priorities for repairs or improvements starting with safety (structural and water-related) and comfort issues (heating, cooling) before moving on to any cosmetic items.
If you require assistance with any of these repairs or improvements we recommend EveryTrade Integrated Home Solutions. EveryTrade provides high quality improvements, remodeling, repairs and preventative maintenance service for your most valuable investment – your home. They offer modern home care for today’s busy homeowners. For more information on the home maintenance, remodeling and repair services they offer please visit their site or give them a call at 614.943.4933 or complete their contact form.
Update your Driver’s License, Auto Registration, and Voter Registration In Ohio, you can do most of this very quickly, but don’t let it slide – this should be done within a month of the move. You can do this online at bmv.ohio.gov/driver_license.stm#tog.
The biggest mistake that buyers make is thinking that after they move into a house, they have to do everything at once. Generally, that is not realistic.
Good luck with your new home. I hope some of these tips will ease your transition and enhance your first few weeks at the property. We would like to wish you many great memories at your new home!
The Opland Group Specializes in Real Estate Sales, Luxury Home Sales, Short Sales in; Bexley 43209 Columbus 43201 43206 43214 43215 Delaware 43015 Downtown Dublin 43016 43017 Gahanna 43219 43230 Grandview Heights 43212 Galena 43021 Hilliard 43026 Lewis Center 43035 New Albany 43054 Pickeringto, 43147 Polaris Powell 43065 Upper Arlington 43220 43221 Westerville 43081 43082 Worthington 43235