Moving to a new house? You must be quite stressed, wondering what to pack, what to leave behind, who to call for help, which packer and mover to decide on, and so forth. Yes, it is one of the most stressful experiences, especially if it is a long-distance move. The task is mind-boggling – you have to tackle chores that you need to do in the new residence before you move into it.
The to-do list will vary, depending on whether you are moving into a new house/flat that has never been lived in, or whether the house/flat is merely changing ownership. A lived-in house presents challenges of its own, while a new house is more about ensuring connectivity – internet, telephone, air conditioning, etc. Whatever be the case, the way to streamline the process is to prioritize the tasks, make a checklist and stick to it.
Here are some tips to guide you through the process of moving houses.
- Change the locks
The minute you sign the final deed, and the house is yours, change the locks of the exterior doors. This is imperative for your safety in the coming days. For all you know, the previous owners, the house agent, the security guards, maintenance staff, and God knows who all, have keys to the house. You don’t want them to try their luck one fine day when you are not home. Do not postpone this chore; get it done as soon as the ownership is transferred to you.
- Get the house cleaned up
You don’t want to move into a house that has discarded items of the previous owner, or if it is a new house, empty paint cans and used brushes, discarded clothing of the workers, and sundry odds and ends are strewn around. It will be a major headache if you start thinking of cleaning after you move in with your baggage. So, do yourself a favour, clean the house well before you move in. You can either do it yourself or hire a cleaning service. The expenses will be well worth it.
- Call pest control
Even if the house looks clean, chances are it is a playground for all sorts of pests and creepy crawlies in the night, when such creatures come out of their nooks and crannies. In case a house has been occupied before and has been unlived for a while, chances of all manner of pests invading the house are higher. Call the pest control services, and have them clean out the kitchen, bathrooms, storerooms, and the rest of the house.
- Paint the walls and ceilings
It is quite possible that you will get a house that has at least been whitewashed. But it will be better for you to get the walls and the ceilings painted. This will also turn out to be an opportunity to inspect the walls before you move in closely. Get the cracks fixed, and any damage repaired. There is no point in slapping on paint if the wall underneath is damaged. Inspect all the rooms, the bathrooms, the kitchen, and if everything looks okay, dab a coat of paint.
- Check the plumbing
This is one of the most important things you need to do. Often, it has been found that in India, the plumbing gives way, no matter how upscale the house. Take professional opinion to check any water seepage. Do not cut corners when it comes to leaks. Seepage can destroy the entire house slowly, but surely. Fix any and every leak, no matter how small or inconspicuous.
- Inform your friends and service providers about the shift
Moving to a new house means a new address. Do remember to update your friends and service providers, such as bank, credit card company, cable/satellite TV service provider, mobile service provider, landline company, insurance company, and so forth, about your new address. Send a text message or e-mail, notifying people of your new address and phone number. You don’t want to miss vital communication simply because you forgot to tell people you have shifted.
- Buy home insurance
This is absolutely vital. When you shift residences, you should buy a home insurance policy to cover your new home from all types of man-made and natural calamities. Even if you are moving as a tenant, you should buy a home insurance policy for the content of your house. If you already have a home insurance policy, inform the insurer and get your address changed.
While it is not easy to shift houses, following these simple tips can make the process easier, and a little less stressful. It can also make you more organized, and ready for your new home. And you can avoid any nasty surprises that might spring up when you are busy in unpacking.
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