10 things to do before moving into a new house

Moving house is something that most of us will do several times, if not dozens of times in our lives and it’s important to try to make these occasions as stress free as possible.

There are a few things that most people tend to leave until the last minute that should really be done well in advance of moving house. Here is  a house moving checklist:

1. Make sure power and water are connected

It’s important to to make sure that these utilities are connected and working long before you move in. Also enquire from the service providers if there are any pending bills from the previous occupants.

2. Have a plan for children

Make sure you’ve thought about what young children and pets will do on the day. It can be handy to ask a friend or family member to help out so you can focus on organising the move.


3. Update friends & family with your new contact information

It is also important to update your friends and relatives. Send around a text message or whatsapp notifying people of your new location so that important people in your life can be updated of your new residence. You don’t want a parent from upcountry bringing you a pleasant surprise to be stranded or inconvenienced with all that laggage.

Read more: 5 tip to take the stress out of moving house

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4. Change the locks on the exterior doors and gates

As soon as you’ve gotten the keys to the house, either buy and install new lock sets or have a locksmith come to the house to switch them out. Let’s face it, the previous tenants, owners, agent, maintenance folks and who knows who else are all likely to have keys to your place. For some peace of mind and as a necessary step in making this house secure, get new locks installed immediately. You may reinstall the old locks.

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5. Pack an un-packing box

One of the first things you need to pack when moving house is an unpacking box. This box should contain allen keys, any tools you might need to construct furniture, labelled ziplock bags with screws from furniture you dismantled in the move, scissors, screwdrivers, masking tape, dust cloths and glue. Having these items all in the same box will save you time and your sanity when setting up your new house.

6. Have the house fumigated or sprayed for pests

When you move house it’s important to make use that you do not inherit a brood of bedbugs of other house pests that maybe difficult to eradicate later. 

7. Have the new house professionally cleaned

While many folks will leave the house clean for you, some won’t, besides,sometimes a house will be empty for an extended period of time which means it will need to clean it before you move in. If you can afford hire a cleaning service to do this, something I would recommend if time is tight, otherwise you can do it yourself. If you do it yourself, set up an area with all of the supplies and tools you’ll need to get the job done: buckets, brooms, mops, cleaners for each type of surface etc. Washing down cabinets, counters and plumbing fixtures and cleaning the floor  etc. will make you feel good about the house.

8. Have spare keys cut

Do this as soon as you have the keys to your new house. Moving days are stressful and busy so it’s very easy for keys to get lost or locked inside the house especially as you don’t have an established key routine at your new residence yet. Have a set of keys cut for each member of the household and have a set cut for family members or friends that live nearby.

9. Pack a first night box

Just as important as the un-packing box, the first night box is essential to a successful move. It should contain a change of clothing, basic toiletries, toilet paper, pyjamas, towels, bed linen and any other essentials you may require like tea bags or a coffee plunger. It makes such a big difference to the comfort of your first night in your new home so you aren’t frantically searching through boxes at midnight trying to find your toothbrush.

10. Prepare for pay TV and Internet connection

Ensure that your TV and internet service companies operate in the new neighbourhood. If they don’t scout for new providers several days before you move. Also ensure that the house is ready for these services e.g. does it have a fiber optic cable already installed.

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