After an exhaustive search, you’ve finally found and closed on your new home and are ready to move in! While your mind might be all about painting, decorating and buying furniture, don’t overlook the important practical steps that should be taken upon arrival. Consider this helpful move-in guideline from Lowe’s to make sure you’re safe and sound in your new home…then you can focus on being stylish, too!
1. Change the locks. You can’t be sure that the keys to your new home are the only ones in existence, so play it safe and change the locks. Now is a good time to consider home automation with smart locks and keyless entry, too.
2. Reprogram the garage door opener. This is another important safety step for your new home. Most remotes have a reset button, but contact the manufacturer if you’re unsure about how to go about it.
3. Know how to shut off the water. This is essential for any new homeowner to know in case of a water emergency. Find the main water shutoff, as well as all outside water spigots. Ask the previous homeowner if you can’t find them.
4. Find the main circuit breaker. Make sure you understand how it’s labeled, and which switch turns off what. If you’re moving into a new construction home, identify the circuits and make your own labels.
5. Test the smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Make sure there’s one smoke detector in every room. Carbon monoxide detectors are needed on each floor. Also, place a fire extinguisher on every level—and learn how to use it.
6. Know what to do if you’re locked out. Find a good hiding spot for a spare key, or make friends with a neighbor who can hold onto a spare set.
7. Get to know your HVAC system so that you’re comfortable controlling your heating and cooling systems. This will be essential to keeping your energy bills in check. You may also want to install a smart thermostat.
8. Check out your lightbulbs. Look both inside and out and see if you need to make the switch to energy efficient lightbulbs.
9. Replace all toilet seats. It’s always a good idea to go with a fresh start in the bathroom!
10. Create an emergency exit plan. Investigate your new home thoroughly and come up with an exit plan for all members of your family in the event of an emergency. Make this your No. 1 priority so you can sleep soundly on your very first night.