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What are the first things to do when you move into a new home?

After the hustle and bustle of moving you probably just want to sit down.  However, to get things off on the right foot there are a few things to do when you move into a new home.   This will make settling into your new home so much easier.

Here is our list of the first things to do when you move into a new home.

1. Do a ‘walkthrough’

There’s no better time to do a walkthrough of your new home than when it’s empty.  Before you start moving your belongings in, take a look around to make sure:

  • The previous owner has done everything they said they would in terms of what they’ve taken, what they’ve left and what they’ve put right for you
  • Everything agreed in the sale is there
  • All doors, windows, switches and plug sockets work
  • There are no obvious signs of pests
  • The garden and/or outdoor space is as agreed

If you find any issues, call your estate agent or, in the event of a breach of the sales contract, your solicitor immediately.

2. Work out what is going where

You’ll save yourself a lot of time and trouble when you start moving your furniture and other belongings into your new home if you know (at least roughly)  where everything is going to go, especially in terms of the heaviest items of furniture.

Of course, you will change things around later on but having a good idea will make the move in so much quicker and easier.

3. Make sure that all your utilities are set up

You should always take care of transferring or setting up your utility accounts before you move.  Now you’re in , you just need to make sure your water, gas, electric, Wi-Fi etc. are all up and running.

4. Familiarise yourself with the location of your fuse box and stopcock

You don’t want to have to go searching for your fuse box or stopcock if they go wrong!  It’s much better to find out exactly where they are now so you can act quickly if your power goes down or you spring a leak.

5. Clean

This is undoubtedly the last thing you’ll want to do after moving but it really is the best time to clean.  The key areas to tackle before you’re settled are:

  • The out of reach things, e.g. ceiling fans, overhead lighting fixtures and shelving
  • The fridge as you need somewhere clean to store food
  • The rest of the kitchen as you need somewhere to prepare that food
  • The bathrooms
  • The floors, particularly the carpets as you won’t be able to see what is in the fibres

6. Identify any immediate repairs

Unless you are moving into a brand new home, there will likely be some repairs to do straight away.  Your walkaround will help identify what and where they are.  Once you have a list, our suggestion would be to prioritise them so you can tackle them in a manageable way around everything else you’ll need to do to move in.

 7. Change the locks

Even if you trust the previous owners and your estate agent, you will not be totally sure who else has keys to your home.  Therefore, it is always good practice to change the locks as quickly as possible after moving in.

8. Have a forwarding address for the previous owners

If you have followed our tips on how to reduce stress when moving house, you will already have arranged for your post to be forwarded on!

However, this is only half the story.  You also need to make sure you have a forwarding address for the previous owners.  Not only will they appreciate you forwarding on important mail, but it also protects you.  You’ll know where to forward on any problems they may have tried to leave behind, for example credit card or council tax debts.

9. Make sure you are insured

The last thing you want is to be caught out by a calamity that could cost hundreds or even thousands of pounds to put right so make sure you have either transferred your existing policy to your new property or taken out a new home insurance policy to protect your new building and its contents.

10. Meet your neighbours

Although you’re going to be tired, knock on your neighbours’ doors when you arrive and introduce yourself.

Not only will your neighbours be a font of knowledge on your new area and how things work (for example when the bins or recycling are collected), but it’s always nice to have a friendly face nearby when you’re in as yet unfamiliar surroundings.

Our property team is here to make the move into your new home as easy as possible.  If you’d like our help, please email me at Jeremy.Tulloch@collinshoy.com or call me on 0208 515 6600.