Owning your first home is an exciting accomplishment, but can also start feeling overwhelming once all the boxes are packed and it’s time to move. Nobody can deny that moving into a new home is a pretty significant adjustment, but it doesn’t have to be a stressful one.
We’ve come up with a few tips to help you make the big move not only easier to deal with but more fun as well. After all, buying a home should become one of your most cherished memories, not a reoccurring nightmare.
Get Right with USPS
Make sure the mail keeps coming by filling out a change of address form. You’d be surprised at how many people don’t realize they’ve been going without their important mail until weeks after they move. Make sure you have a plan in place to keep getting your mail. The last thing you want is for sensitive information to end up in the wrong hands.
Hook Up All Necessary Utilities
Of course, you want to have the gas water and electricity going by the time you move in, but cable and internet service are important too. Being able to surf the web or watch your favorite show on your first night will help you feel more comfortable in your new home.
Think About Security
Always assume that someone else has a copy of the locks when you move into a new place. Real estate agents, contractors and any number of people may have accessed your home while it was on the market, which is completely normal. However, if one of those keys were misplaced or ended up in the wrong hands, it could mean an open invitation for burglars.
Call a locksmith to change all the locks on your new home as soon as you move in, or even a day or two before. It also wouldn’t hurt to consider having a security system installed. Research shows that homes with an alarm system are far less likely to become burglarized.
Check Up On Repairs
If you requested certain repairs as part of your closing arrangement, it’s a good idea to make sure those repairs are complete. Do a walk through to ensure that everything on your list is addressed.
Give It a Good Clean
The first step in making a house feel like a home is cleaning from top to bottom. It’s going to be a lot easier before you unpack all those boxes. Make the most of this time by moving appliances away from the wall so you can tackle the hard-to-reach areas.
Once your new home is clean, it won’t feel like you are in a used space. It will seem much more like you are getting a fresh start in your new home.
While unpacking may not be considered sheer bliss, it does signify that you are on the homestretch. All the packing and organizing and other logistics that come with buying a home all lead up to this point. When it comes to feeling as comfortable as possible as quickly as possible, you should be strategic about your unpacking plan. I recommend tackling it in a specific order:
- Essentials: You’ve been moving and cleaning all day and have a new house full of unopened boxes to show for it. Odds are, you are looking forward to a nice warm shower. That’s why I recommend unpacking your essentials first. Toilet paper, soap, towels, shower curtains, toothpaste, and a change of clothes should be the first things you pull out.
- Kitchen: Move on to the kitchen next. You’ll probably end up ordering in for dinner, but at least you’ll have some nice clean plates to eat off of if your kitchen is unpacked.
- Beds: Even if you are not ready to set up your entire bedroom just yet, at least make sure you have your comfortable and familiar bed all set up, complete with sheets and a blanket. You can tackle the rest of it after a good night’s sleep.
- Furniture and Cabinets: This is an excellent way to start day two. Start with setting up the remainder of your furniture, dressers, etc… You can move it around afterward, but it’s good to get the heavy lifting out of the way early in the day.
- Room to Room: Start working your way from room to room, unpacking boxes, hanging curtains and putting everything in its rightful place. Starting with the living room is a good idea, to give yourself the perfect place to unwind and watch TV after a long day of unpacking. Then move to the bedrooms and the laundry room.
Remember that it is okay if it takes a few days to unpack everything. Start with the essentials that will make your feel more comfortable and move on from there.
Take a Stroll Through Your New Neighborhood
Don’t forget to get out there and check out your new neighborhood. Walk around to find nearby parks and attractions. Introduce yourself to the neighbors and take active steps toward becoming part of your new community.
Moving into a new home is both an exciting and stressful time. Proper preparation and having a solid game plan will help you get much more fulfillment out of this extraordinary life experience.
About the Author: Art Lopez is the founder and owner of A&C Brothers Moving in Phoenix, Arizona. The company helps residents from all over Arizona take the stress out of moving.