Note: Moving during COVID-19 requires extra precautions. Make sure to wear a mask, keep social distance and follow CDC guidelines. Read more in our post on moving during a pandemic.
While getting your belongings unpacked and set up in your new home is no doubt your priority, there are several other aspects to moving into a new home that you’ll need to prioritize. Be sure to check these items off your list as you settle in.
1. Transfer utilities
Before you can move into your new home and begin unpacking, you need to set up your utilities such as water, gas, and electricity. Although utilities companies are usually timely about activation, the sooner you notify them of your move-in date, the better.
2. Connect TV and internet
Schedule installation at least 2-3 weeks before you move to ensure that your services are activated and the appointment slot is convenient for you.
3. Update your address
From forwarding your mail, to banks and credit cards, to car registration and driver’s licenses, your address is essential to your daily life. When you update your address after a move, you should ensure that your information is accurate in all relevant places. Check out our change of address checklist for details.
4. Schedule a cleaning and any home improvements
Before you move your furniture, it’s a good idea to clean all the nooks and crannies of your new home. Schedule a cleaning service to come in and do a thorough once-over.
Repairs and home improvements are always part of moving into a new home. Maybe you are planning on installing new windows and a kitchen makeover, or maybe you just want to paint the bedroom or install new curtain rods. Scheduling these improvements ahead of moving day will make your life easier.
5. Change your locks
The former homeowner may have shared their keys with family members, pet-sitters, neighbors and who knows who else! Whether you hire a locksmith or reinstall the locks on your own, it will give you peace of mind. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
6. Locate shut-off valves
If you are doing repairs or have a leak and you need to shut off your water, it’s necessary to locate your shut-off valves. From your new home’s shut-off valve, to your water company’s, to the water meter, there are many locations to get familiar with both inside and outside your home.
7. Locate the circuit-breaker
If there is a power outage, you may need to replace a fuse or reset a circuit breaker and you don’t want to be searching through the dark to find it. Circuit breakers are often located outdoors, in basements, in storage closets, or in hallways.
8. Change the batteries and test your smoke detectors
A smoke detector is a necessary way to protect you and your loved ones in the event of a fire. Smoke detectors must be maintained to function properly. This is why changing the batteries and testing your new home’s smoke detectors is so important.
9. Set up your home security system
Whether you install a system yourself, or use a service, moving is one of the best times to set up home security. If you already have a system in place or are tied to a contract, be sure to call your provider or update your information online.
10. Research local businesses
When you move to a different town or state, it’s good to learn about local businesses. From a new doctor to a favorite coffee shop, you’ll have to do quite a bit of research. Check online for reviews, recommendations, and photos of local businesses or ask for recommendations in neighborhood groups to help you make decisions.
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