Moving into a new house, whether you’re renting or buying, is like a home honeymoon. You fall in love with everything new and unexplored. Each new room is a haven, each window an uninterrupted source of fresh sunlight into your new patch of the planet, and each shiny floorboard a reflection of your hopes and dreams that one day, you would finally live in your own converted warehouse/loft apartment/country cottage/[insert dream home here].
And that ‘honeymoon effect’ can make it easy to forget some of the more boring (and sometimes gross) tasks that need to happen as soon as you move in. So we’ve pulled together a list of everything that you should probably do as soon as you move in, to make sure that loved-up vibe doesn’t blind you from some of the details:
1) Change all your locks
It’s easy to trust people when they say they’ve handed over every set of keys, but there’s always a chance they had given a spare set to a random cleaner or tenant at some point. So cover your back (and your insurance policy) by investing in new locks as soon as you move in.
2) Replace the toilet seats
Gross, right? Absolutely. But not as gross as sitting on the same toilet seat as who knows how many others – it might as well be a public cubicle if you don’t know how long it’s been there. So invest in some new seats straight away. It will make your home feel thoroughly your own. And you won’t catch any dodgy diseases from the previous owners…
3) Exterminate unwanted guests
Not your neighbours or your in-laws – we mean rodents, insects and vermin. It’s not something that anyone wants to think about when they first move into a new home, but realistically, there’s every chance that the odd cockroach could be kicking around. So while there’s nothing in the house to attract any unwanted visitors, have the place sprayed and cleaned. That way, you can unpack everything, safe in the knowledge that there’s no additional uninvited tenants under the floorboards.
4) Do your own deep clean
The previous tenants would have had the house cleaned, but only to a ‘broom standard’. You need to get in and get your hands dirty before you start unpacking, and that way you can be assured that you’re starting off with a clean slate. Even if the place smells like chlorine when you first arrive, don’t ever take for granted that it has been deep cleaned – going heavy on the bleach is a classic trick to make people ‘think’ a place is clean.
5) Map the power
This is quite possibly the most boring tip we have ever posted, but hey, we just want the best for you. So, when you move in, before you put all of your big-ticket furniture items in place, make sure you map out or write down where all the major power points are. Because there is nothing more annoying than unpacking ten boxes of books onto your brand new Ikea bookshelf, only to realise when you’re finished that you have obstructed the only power point in the room.