New Home Checklist: Your Guide to Moving In

New Home Checklist: Your Guide to Moving In

Congratulations on purchasing your new home! Moving into a new home is an exciting and rewarding experience, but it can also be overwhelming with all the tasks that need to be completed. To help you navigate this process smoothly, we have compiled a list of essential tasks that new homeowners should complete when moving in. From setting up utilities to changing the locks, these tasks will ensure that your transition into your new home is as seamless as possible.

Essential pre-move tasks

Before the big day, there is a list of essential tasks that will set the stage for a smooth transition into your new residence. These tasks help ensure the home is clean, safe, and fully functional upon your arrival, making the settling-in process much more enjoyable.

Change the Locks: The first task that new homeowners should tackle when moving in is changing the locks on all exterior doors. While the previous owners may have handed over their keys, it’s always a good idea to start fresh with new locks for added security. You can easily hire a locksmith to change the locks or purchase and install new ones yourself. This simple step will give you peace of mind knowing that you are the only ones with access to your home.

Deep Clean the Space: Even if the previous owners left the home spotless, a deep clean can make you feel more at home and ensure that everything is in its best shape. This will help you get rid of any lingering dust or dirt and make your new space feel fresh and welcoming. Consider hiring professional cleaners for a more detailed cleaning job if needed.

Get Utilities Set Up: Another task that new homeowners should complete is setting up utilities in their name. This includes electricity, water, gas, internet, and any other services that are necessary for your daily life. Consider contacting each provider ahead of time to schedule installations or transfers of service so everything is up and running when you move in.

Prepare for Pest Control: Prevention is key when it comes to dealing with potential pests. Schedule a pest control service to treat the home before you move in. This proactive step can save you from uninvited critters that could decide to set up camp in your new home.

Change the Address: Inform all the necessary entities of your new address. This includes the post office, banks, employers, insurance companies, and subscription services or memberships you have. Be sure to update any ID or documentation as well. It may seem minor, but keeping your address up-to-date is essential for a smooth transition.

Tasks in the first few days after moving in

Once you’ve unpacked your essentials and are starting to settle in, there are critical tasks that will help you establish a functional living environment.

Unpack the Essentials: Create a plan for each room in your home and prioritize unpacking the items you need for daily living first. This typically includes kitchenware, bathroom supplies, and bedding. Unpacking these items will make your first few nights in the home much more comfortable.

Set Up Major Appliances: Get your appliances, such as the refrigerator, washer, and dryer, up and running. This will help prevent food spoilage and keep your clothes clean, as well as make the house feel more like a home.

Organize Your Space: With the essentials in place, start organizing your new home. Establishing order will help reduce clutter and create an environment that supports your daily routines. Think about where items belong and start that furniture arrangement.

Plan for Trash and Recycling: Find out the collection schedules for trash and recycling in your new neighborhood and prepare for them. Set up bins or trash cans and designate a convenient location for them in or around your home.

Connect with Neighbors: Building a good relationship with your neighbors can be invaluable. They can provide you with area-specific recommendations and possibly help out in a pinch. Take the time to introduce yourself once the dust has settled.

Safety and maintenance checks

Take a proactive approach to home safety and maintenance. Invest time in examining your new home to ensure everything is functioning correctly.

Check Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors: It’s important to test all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms in your new home. Safety should always be a top priority, so make sure these devices are functioning properly and replace any batteries if needed. It’s also a good idea to create a fire escape plan with your family so everyone knows what to do in case of an emergency.

Familiarize Yourself with Major Functions: Shut-off valves, circuit breakers, and other major home functions should be things you’re familiar with. Knowing how to quickly turn off the water or electricity can prevent potential damage in the event of a leak or power outage. Take some time to locate these key components during your move-in process.

Inspect the Home’s Exterior: Walk around the perimeter of the home and inspect for any damage or needed repairs. Look for loose shingles, cracks in the foundation, or any other signs of wear that should be addressed.

Service Heating and Cooling Systems: Have your HVAC system serviced to ensure it’s running efficiently and safely. This is also a good time to change the air filters, which should be done regularly to maintain indoor air quality.

Check for Plumbing Leaks: Look for any signs of plumbing leaks under sinks, around the water heater, or in the walls and ceilings. A timely inspection can help prevent water damage and costly repairs.

Personalizing your space

Now that the house is safe and functional, it’s time to add those personal touches that transform a house into a home.

Paint and Decorate: If you’re planning to paint or wallpaper, now is the time to do it before you unpack and fully settle in. Add art, photos, and other decorative pieces to give the home a personal feel that speaks to your style and personality.

Landscape and Garden: The exterior of your home is just as important as the interior. Start working on your curb appeal by planting flowers, trimming hedges, and maintaining the lawn. If you have a garden, give it some love and nurture those plants.

Set Up a Maintenance Schedule: Develop a maintenance plan for your home. Regularly checking and maintaining your home’s components can extend their lifespan and prevent minor issues from becoming major problems.

Create a Relaxation Space: Your home should be a place of comfort and relaxation. Designate a space in your home where you can unwind, whether it’s a reading nook, a meditation area, or a cozy corner in the living room.

Moving into a new home is full of promise and potential, and with the right plan in place, you can make the process enjoyable rather than overwhelming. By tackling these tasks, you’ll not only ensure a smooth transition but also set the foundation for a happy and healthy life in your new home. Remember, your dream home won’t be unpacked, decorated, and maintained overnight. Take your time, enjoy the process, and savor the joy of setting up your very own sanctuary.

Need a complete change in scenery? Discovery Homes can help. We build new home communities throughout the Bay Area. Visit us online at to learn more about our communities, view available homes, and schedule an appointment.