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Moving Soon? These 12 Tips Can Simplify Your Next Move


Deciding to purchase a new home and choosing a new place to live are two of the most impactful decisions you’ll make in your adult life. Buying a new home, especially, is a huge milestone. However, just because you have the keys, that doesn’t mean you’re ready to move all of your stuff into your new place. 

Regardless of whether this is your first time moving or you’re a seasoned pro, you might already know the basics: how to pack all your belongings in boxes; how to transport those boxes (maybe even with the help of movers and a moving truck) to your new space; and how you should unload everything once you get there. With all the hustle and bustle of a move, it’s easy to forget to take care of some crucial home projects before pulling up in your moving van.

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There are plenty of projects you can tackle while living in your home, but some are better done before you move in to save yourself the extra stress. Consider updating, replacing, remodeling and knocking out these home projects before moving in full-time. After finishing those up, check out the best internet providers and whether you should invest in solar panels

Transfer utilities and change your address 

Changing your address and updating your utilities may seem obvious but can be easily overlooked when you’re busy with the home-buying process. Make sure you have utilities and core services set up to be active in your new home before you move in. What a bummer to spend your first night in your first home with no power. Don’t forget to also transfer mail, the internet, TV services and any regularly scheduled deliveries to your new home address.

Person with orange gloves scrubbing a tile floor

The floor is just one spot you should clean in your new home.

Alfred Evelina/Getty Images

Deep-clean

No matter whether your new home looks spotless or is visibly dusty, it’s a good idea to give it a deep clean before you settle in. The previous owner probably left some dirt, pet hair, dust or other grime behind. Whether you see it or not, it’s best to start fresh. 

Before moving in, you’ll want to clean these spots. While scrubbing, take a moment to replace your air filters and check your smoke detectors, too. 

1. Kitchen
2. Cabinets
3. Stove 
4. Refrigerator
5. Bathroom
6. Shower heads
7. Toilet
8. Floors, walls and baseboards
9. Ceiling fans and light fixtures
10. Washing machine
11. Dishwasher

A cordless vacuum leaning against a wall, between a table and a window

Before you move in, you’ll want to vacuum, wipe down and scrub your new home. 

Brian Bennett/CNET

Must-have cleaning equipment

Deep-cleaning your entire home is easier when you have the right tools. CNET puts many products to the test, and these are some of our favorites: 

A women sitting on the floor painting a wall

Don’t like the color of a room? Paint it. 

The Good Brigade/Getty Images

Paint 

Painting can transform a space. Do you hate that purple dining room or the jet-black bedroom formerly occupied by a teenager? Best to get it done before you get settled. It may not be as intrusive as other major home updates, but you will have to move all your junk to the middle of the room, provided there’s space.

Also, paint sprays and splatters, so if you do have belongings in the room you’ll need additional protection by way of plastic sheeting or drop cloths. Pro tip: You can paint walls or rooms before doing flooring updates so you don’t have to be as concerned with getting paint on your new floors.

Man putting down new hardwood flooring

If you’re going to replace or refinish an existing floor, you definitely want to get that done before moving in.

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Replace or refinish flooring 

Everything in your house that isn’t attached to a wall is going to take up floor space. If you’re going to replace or refinish an existing floor, you definitely want to get that done before moving in. Anyone you hire to do the work will require the affected rooms to be empty, so there’s no reason to fill them up beforehand. 

Even if you do the work yourself, you’ll need to shuffle your belongings around, and that will drastically lengthen the time it takes to complete the project and make it harder on yourself. 

Plumbing and electric updates

If you’re buying a home that is a bit dated and needs major updates to core systems like plumbing or electrical, you might consider getting these projects done before your move. 

If you do have major updates taking place, there’s a fair chance the work involved will include cutting out sections of drywall or flooring to make pathways for updated pipes or wiring. The demo and subsequent drywall repairs will create quite a bit of dust, so you’ll also likely be painting walls or repairing flooring. 

Man working with a power drill

Cutting out sections of drywall can create a lot of dust, which might require you to repaint walls or repair flooring. 

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Kitchen remodel

If you’re planning on remodeling or renovating your kitchen, it’s better to do it before moving in. Going through a total kitchen remodel can upset the day-to-day flow in many ways. Not only will you not be able to prepare food, you also won’t have any space to store food, especially if appliances need to be moved or unplugged. You’ll need space to store all of your dishes and kitchen gadgets, plus all of the debris and materials for the kitchen renovation will have to go somewhere as well. 

Bathroom renovation

Another inconvenience is a total bathroom remodel. If you have multiple bathrooms, it may or may not be a huge issue depending on how many people live in your home. If you only have one full bathroom, being without it for days or weeks will be a pain. In either circumstance, if you’re paying to have the work done for you, it’s wise to factor in more time than your contractor estimates and be prepared for limited bathroom space.

An HVAC unit at the CNET smart home

Luckily, replacing major HVAC components isn’t usually too lengthy of a process.

CNET

Replace HVAC 

This one can depend on the timing of your new home purchase. Replacing major HVAC components isn’t usually too lengthy of a process, nor does it normally require much renovation to other parts of the home. If you live through sweltering summers and arctic winters, you may want to have this work done before moving in so you won’t have to expose yourself to extreme temperatures. 

Change locks and install home security 

It’s never a bad idea to change out locks on a new home or put home security elements in place before moving in. Changing out your locks ensures the previous owner no longer has access to your home, while home security cameras and video doorbells deter would-be burglars and let you keep an eye on your property no matter where you are. 

Every home is different, so there’s no one-size-fits-all rule on security camera placement. Some common places to put them are by front, back and side door. Whatever you do, avoid putting cameras in places that violate your or your neighbor’s privacy like bedrooms and bathrooms. If you’re still wondering where to put your new security cameras, CNET lays out the best and worst spots for them.

A dog sitting inside a moving box

Make sure to pet-proof your home before bringing in your furry friend.

Catherine Falls Commercial/Getty Images

Child and pet-proofing

Safety can go beyond locks and security cameras. If you have small children, you may want to put child safety devices in place before having them in the home. Likewise, if you have pets, you may need similar safety precautions inside or a fence around your new yard. 

This is also a good time to walk through your home and make sure you know where the main electric, water and gas shut-offs are, as well as any other safety features. This lets you start thinking about your family’s home safety plan in case of an emergency

To recap, any of these tasks can happen while you’re already moved into and living in your new home, but you’re likely to be less stressed if you make sure these are checked off beforehand. You’ll be much more likely to start off loving your new home than being frustrated with how it’s complicating your life. While you’re at it, check out this list of tools you’ll need for maintaining your new home. Plus, here’s how to become friends with your new neighbors and how to turn your new house into a home



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