In all the excitement of moving and trying to get settled in the new home, the last thing You want is a honey-do list, right? Some things, however, shouldn’t be put off but need to be taken care of now. So, push the boxes aside for a day or two and let’s get ‘er done!
1. Change the locks
Although this may seem like a no-brainer, changing the door locks when moving into a new home is something many homebuyers neglect doing. Hey, when You consider all the little details that need attention, such as changing over the utilities, registering the kids in new schools and ensuring everyone has Your new address, something is bound to fall through the cracks. Since You don’t know exactly how many people have keys to Your new home and who they are, put this one at the top of Your to-do list. Unless You’re opting for a smart lock, changing the locks on a door is a common DIY project and costs very little.
2. Locate Your home’s main water shutoff valve – ( called a “toby” )
Scrambling to figure out how to shut off the water valve in Your new home wastes precious time in an emergency. Scout out the location of Your main water shutoff valve now and share the location with other household members. Your shut off valve or toby is generally located at the front boundary of Your property, that sits between the local council water main and Your private water pipe. ( You’ll probably find the location of the Toby before moving in as Your Agent would have shown You where it is )
3. Secure Your home’s purchase paperwork
Before putting away all those documents You signed when You offered to purchase Your new home , make copies of them and store them in a safe place, off-site. No, You may not need to refer to this paperwork, but then again, You may, so it’s a good idea to keep everything. While You’re in the paperwork groove, consider purchasing an accordion file and use it to hold all the paperwork You’ll accumulate as a homeowner. This includes receipts for repairs and improvements, insurance information and warranties. When it comes time to sell the home, You’ll be glad you have all of this important information in one place.
4. Open a new savings account
Yes, You paid a whole lot of money when You purchased Your new home but that was just the beginning of what it costs to own a home. Routine maintenance and emergency repairs need to be factored in as well. “No new homeowner, myself included, can ever feel fully prepared for the maintenance costs and renovation costs associated with homeownership,” Pamela Capalad, a Brooklyn NY financial planner tells NerdWallet.com. But a savings account, dedicated specifically to pay for home maintenance and repairs can go a long way toward being prepared. Most financial experts say to set aside 1 to 2 percent of the home’s value each year for both maintenance and repairs. For example, if Your home is worth $250,000, you should dedicate from $2,500 to $5,000 a year. The materials used in the construction of Your home may dictate a lesser amount to set aside although the important thing to remember is to establish a maintenance & repairs figure that You’re comfortable with. Make it less painful by having a monthly amount (from about $210 to $420) automatically deducted from Your pay and sent to the dedicated savings account. Deferring routine maintenance may impact Your new home’s future value, by the way.
5. Replace your air filters
Changing an old heatpump/aircon filter just one time is enough to convince many of us to make changing them a routine. Sadly, that isn’t the case. Many homeowners neglect this inexpensive and easy home maintenance chore and end up breathing in that brown fuzz that clings to old filters.