Don't let these tasks get lost in the excitement of moving in.
Once the initial stress is over, you'll likely feel eager to finally settle into your new home. Each empty corner is just brimming with possibilities!
But there are a few important things to take care of before you bust out the paintbrushes to make the house yours.
Change the Locks
Safety is your top priority. Even if the previous owners honestly believe there are no extra keys floating around out there, spares could have gotten misplaced or loaned out over the years. You never know who could have a copy in their hands! So do the smart thing and replace your locks as soon as you move in.
If you're not up to the task yourself, hire a locksmith to change the locks for you. You can arrange to have this done the day you move in or sooner.
Do a Deep Clean
Chances are, your predecessors took the time to clean the house fairly well before you moved in. It's common courtesy, and they probably had the place looking sharp for potential home buyers. But dust and dirt may have settled in between the time you signed the contract and the time you're moving in.
The best time to do a deep, thorough house clean is now, before your fixtures and furniture cover the floors. The cleaner your house is to start, the easier it will be to keep it that way!
Clean or Replace Filters
You don't know how long it's been since the previous homeowners replaced the filter in the kitchen and bathroom vents, the furnace, or the air conditioner unit(s). These filters are designed to keep the units running efficiently and remove dust particles from the air you breathe. For the health of your HVAC system (and your family!), you should clean or switch out the filters right away.
Check for Leaks
Small leaks can be the source of major repair bills. Since you haven't run the water yet, now is a great time to check for leaks. Have a look at your water meter at the beginning and end of a two-hour window where no water is being used in the house - if the reading changes in that time, you've likely got a leak.
Change the Toilet Seats
Okay, maybe this is a tad germ-phobic, but think about it. Most people are at least a little bit irked by public washrooms, right? They're a necessity, sure, but we'd all rather be doing our business on the comfort of our own clean, homes.
What's the difference between the toilet seat a stranger's house (that you've just purchased) and one in a public washroom? Not much. When you get down to it, they're both been used thousands of times by who-knows-who.
So why not treat yourself to a shiny new one when you move in? After all, it's the little things that make a house feel like home.