Welcome to your new home! Whether it’s the house you’ve always dreamed of buying or a stepping stone to your next adventure, don’t let the unpacking process slow you down as you make your house your home. You can get settled in more quickly with help from this step by step moving tips checklist.
Check in With Your Utilities
One of the first things you should do upon arriving at your new home is to get in touch with your utility companies and verify that they’ve got the service under your name. Here are a few other important pointers:
Contact your HOA. If you’re moving into a condo or a home with an HOA, check in with their office and learn about your agreement. Some pay for utilities to members through the monthly fee. Find out about where you can throw out the trash and get parking permits if they’re required.
Find the cut-off mains for your utilities. Look around for the electric, water and gas mains and verify that they’re working correctly.
Contact your local internet and broadband provider. Let them know you’ve arrived and schedule a time for installation. If you need internet service in the meantime, you may be able to turn your phone into a mobile hot spot.
Prioritize Your Unpacking
If you hired a moving company, they probably left you an inventory of everything that was moved. Check that list and verify that no items were damaged or missing before they leave. Because it’s hard to know what to unpack first, we’ve got a list of unpacking tips to take on while the movers are getting things unloaded:
Order lunch. Before you get too busy, pick up or order lunch to make sure everyone is fed and fueled.
Clean your floors, walls and windows. Once new furnishings go in, it’s hard to catch up on this one.
Wipe down furniture. To help your kids feel at home more quickly, get them involved in unpacking. Assign a volunteer to dust and clean all furniture as it comes off the truck.
Work with the movers. Tell them where you want furniture to go and have them stack moving boxes along one wall in the correct room.
Clean the kitchen. Wipe out refrigerators and the pantry, then unpack the food. Line the shelves in your kitchen and unpack your silverware, dishes, glasses and pots and pans.
Clean as you go. Use a big box to hold broken-down boxes and recyclables and place a few trash bags on door handles to keep the mess down.
Make beds and unpack bathrooms. Showering and sleeping in your own bed will help you feel grounded later. Make sure you keep track of your shower curtain and linens for the kid’s rooms after they’re unloaded.
Think fire safety now. Locate the fire extinguishers and review the new fire escape plan with your family. Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors throughout the home.
How to Unpack After Moving Homes
In the days that follow moving day, it’s important to stay organized during the unpacking process. Here are some good ideas that can help you manage unpacking after a move.
Start in the living spaces you’ll need most. Get the kitchen, living room and dining room unpacked and arranged to provide a sense of stability in the heart of your home.
Set up your tech. Get your computer, televisions, telephones plugged in and connected to your home network.
Break down the boxes. Take a few minutes and get the important items out of key boxes on a room-by-room basis. This will help keep your rooms in order during the transition.
Call a locksmith. It’s a good idea to replace the locks, since you can’t be sure who’s got a copy of your keys.
How to Make a New House Your Home
After most of the boxes are unpacked, it’s time to decorate and put those finishing touches on your new place.
Set up a tour of your children’s new school. Help them feel more comfortable by meeting teachers, finding the library, gym and school office.
Hang window coverings. Installing window treatments will help you and your family feel more secure.
Run the errands. Get a library card, licenses for pets and register to vote.
Get to the DMV. Update the address on your driver’s license.
Maintain the exterior. Mow the lawn and assess the outside of your home for any needed upkeep, especially if it’s been vacant for a while.
Decorate with memories. Get images printed and framed to keep the photos up-to-date.
Get rid of empty boxes. Consider using social media to advertise. People are always on the hunt for boxes.
Get deep into the items that were left in the garage and make sense of the mess while you have time.
And just like that, you’re well on your way to settling in.