The Post-Move Checklist – Essential Tasks for Settling into Your New Home

Post-Move Checklist
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Making your new house a home requires many tasks. If possible, you will want to make sure your utilities are transferred or set up before moving day.

Inspect your furniture to make sure nothing was damaged during the move. Also, remember to sign your movers’ inventory list. You will need this for your insurance claim. A new house checklist will be important for all of this. Here are some post-move checklist items to add to your list.

Unpack the Essentials

Depending on the time of day you move into your new home, you will probably want to unpack the kitchen items first (as long as you have food in the fridge). Next up, the bedrooms, and finally, the bathroom. Ideally, you should have your most essential items packed into one or two boxes that you can easily find and access when you first get into the house, so make sure to label these appropriately. This box(es) should contain toiletries, bedding and linens, medications, books, a few kitchen tools and spices, and other necessary things you may need in the short term.

If you have kids, it is a good idea to pack each child a suitcase with clothes and other necessities for their first night in the new home. This will give them a sense of familiarity and comfort and allow them to settle into their room quickly. Additionally, it is a great idea to pack a box of snacks and drinks for the whole family. This will keep everyone happy and fed as they are working to unpack.

Once you’re settled in and have a chance to walk around your new abode, take note of where the water shut-off valve is and how to find other important utilities. Also, locate the neighborhood grocery stores and other key landmarks to help your family feel at home.

It’s also a good idea to give the entire space a once over, cleaning all the areas you regularly touch. This will eliminate any dust or grime from previous tenants while also giving you a good look at any areas needing repair.

Set Up Your Furniture

You’ll probably want to take the time to make your furniture feel at home in your new house. This includes beds, sofas, and other big pieces, but it’s also the perfect opportunity to reorganize things like closets or storage rooms.

If your home has a security system, change the locks to ensure you’re the only person who can access your home. You should also check that your smoke detectors are working and change the batteries if needed. Another safety-related task that you should do is to map out your escape route in case of a fire or natural disaster. This is especially important if you have young children.

Before you start moving things into your new house, take room measurements so that you know what size items will fit in each space. This will save you a lot of hassle down the road. For example, if you have a large bookcase that you want to move into your living room, you’ll need to measure the bookcase’s width and the ceiling’s height. Once you have this information, you can buy bookshelves that will fit the space perfectly.

On moving day, be sure to clear a path for the movers so they can get around without worrying about bumping into or tripping over anything. It will also help if you have a floor plan and labeling for each box so that the movers know which boxes are to be placed in which room.

Finally, don’t forget to set up your utilities. This includes electricity, gas, water, and possibly cable or phone service. If you’re transferring these services from your old home to your new one, be sure to call ahead to schedule the appropriate dates.

Take Room Measurements

You may be familiar with the basic dimensions of your new home, but it’s important to take room measurements so that you can properly re-arrange and bring in furniture. It’s also a great way to ensure that furniture will fit through passageways and entrances, such as the door to a bedroom or a hallway leading to the living room.

Start with measuring the door you’ll use to access the room, taking its height and width as well as a diagonal measurement from top left to bottom right. Then, work your way around the room, capturing all incremented walls and other elements that are in the space, such as windows or fireplaces. If you have an old tape measure lying around, this is the time to use it, but a laser measuring tool will save you some time and effort, especially when measuring longer areas.

Once you’ve measured all the walls’ length and width, you can calculate the room’s square footage by multiplying them together. Generally, you should measure each wall across (lengthwise) and then vertically up to the ceiling, using standard 8-foot ceilings as a reference.

Once you have all the room measurements, it’s a good idea to sketch the space to reference during the re-arranging process. This will give you a better sense of the flow of space and will help you decide which pieces to keep, which to donate, and which to purchase in the future. It’s important to match the proportion and scale of new furniture with existing pieces to create a cohesive flow throughout the space while keeping it functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Clean Up

Whether you’re moving into a new apartment, condo, or home, the first week of living in your new place is crucial for making it feel like your own. This includes a thorough cleaning to remove any residue left behind by previous residents. It also ensures that you’re starting with a clean slate.

Depending on your many boxes, this might take several days to complete. If you don’t want to deal with the mess, consider hiring a professional company to handle the move and cleaning. They can help you get organized, protect your furniture from damage, and keep things running smoothly.

When it comes to cleaning, start with your closets, cabinets, and pantry to get rid of any dust or crumbs. You’ll also want to make sure that you’re able to reach the back corners of your appliances, which are known to harbor bacteria. A study from NSF International found that refrigerator drawers can contain E. coli, listeria, salmonella, and other harmful pathogens.

Once your rooms are completely clean, you can begin unpacking your boxes. Before you do, though, label them so you know what they’re holding. Also, be sure to show the movers where each box should go. You might even want to give them a tip for their help.

Another important task to complete after your move is changing the locks. You never know who has had keys to your old house, and you don’t want that information getting into the wrong hands. This is especially important if you’re renting and not buying your new home. It can also help you prevent unwanted guests from showing up at your door.

Change Your Address

Changing your address can be one of the most time-consuming tasks during a move. Fortunately, the more organized you are, the easier it will be to get it all done. Start by preparing yourself for the task ahead of time by gathering all the information you need to fill out change-of-address forms, including account numbers, passwords, and legal details. This will make completing the form much faster and will reduce the chances of mistakes or forgetting important accounts, memberships, and bills.

You will need to change your address with the postal service, utility companies (gas & electric), insurance companies (car, home, life, disability, and health), and any other financial institutions that use your address. You also need to update your address with your children’s schools so that the right transcripts are sent to the new school, and your kids have everything they need to start their first day of class.

Subscription boxes like Dollar Shave Club, grocery delivery services, and periodicals must also be informed of your new address. If you employ local providers to perform routine household chores such as cleaning, lawn care, and house cleaning, make sure they know about your upcoming move so they can continue service at your old address until you are ready to transition to the new home.

Other important things to do include registering to vote, getting your library card, and acquiring your children’s school IDs. You can also take this opportunity to explore your new neighborhood, meet your neighbors, and learn about your community’s stores, parks, and points of interest. This will help your family feel more at home and will also give you a sense of community.

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