It’s actually happening. We finally closed on our new house and are in the process of moving. There’s so much that needs to be done when moving into a new home, and with a newly constructed home there are a few extra things to consider you may not have thought of. That’s why I put together a list of the the seven things you must do when you move into a newly constructed home.
As a bonus I’ve constructed a free printable list for you to use when it comes time for your move as well. It even includes space for you to keep track of things the builder needs to come back and repair or other to do you think of!
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1. Inspect the House and Review Your List of IOUs
First and foremost, before you move into your new home you need to have one last final inspection! This should be done with your building supervisor and you should go over everything in the house from location of the circuit breaker on the water mains do anything that might be left unfinished. Depending on the time of year this list may be extremely long or it may I have nothing on it at all.
For us we were owed some painting on the exterior due to temperature as well as some cleanup from the deck construction. We also had some repairs that still needed to be done but the parts had to be ordered. Keep track of all these things and make sure they are completed on time, some builders are a little more absent minded than others.
2. Forward Your Mail but Have a Back Up Address
Forwarding your mail so that it comes your new address is standard protocol for any move, but it never hurts to have a back up address when you have a new construction! Occasionally delivery services may be unsure where the new house is, I find this to be especially true for shipping providers rather than USPS as they’re there on a daily basis and are aware of new construction.
It helps to have a back up address such as a nearby friend or family that you can set deliveries to temporarily until you’re certain that people (and Google Maps) are aware of where you’re at new house is located.
3. Install Ceiling Fans and Change Out Any Lights You Don’t Like
Many builders will not put up ceiling fans for you and you will have to supply and install your own. They also to use standard builder grade lights which may not be what you were hoping for. I swapped out our island pendant lights for these gorgeous Kichler schoolhouse pendant lights and added GE’s clear vintage bulbs for a modern farmhouse feel.
Take the time while there’s nothing in place to go ahead and get this done. Besides, you’ll need have light to see by as you unpack. Prior to installation of ceiling fans in some of our rooms there was no light at all!
4. Run a Clean Cycle on Your New Appliances
Depending on how many of your appliances are new (dishwasher and possibly washer) you’re probably going to want to run a clean cycle on them. Manufacture and structuring may even ask you to do this.
Our dishwasher was installed by the builder and I ran it on a clean cycle as we were doing the first wave of moving prior to painting. You can pick up a dishwasher cleaning packet almost anywhere. I like Lemi Shine Natural Appliance Cleaner for it’s more environmentally conscious ingredients.
Once we get our laundry equipment installed I will also run a clean cycle on the washer just because it’s been in storage for five months. Odds are you probably forgot to do this before packing anyway and it doesn’t hurt to do an extra clean cycle.
5. Give the Bathrooms a Deep Clean
It’s no secret that building a house is a messy job. And while a cleaning crew does clean the house prior to closing, it’s typically not what would pass as a final clean for most of us. That’s why I recommend one of the first things you get in and do is clean the bathrooms! Why? Because it’s going to be the room that you use first when you’re on packing everything.
There’s nothing saying that you can’t give everything a good wipe down and even dust and vacuum the floor. Just expect that you’re most likely going to have to do that again after bringing in all of those boxes. Just saying.
Moving to a new home also gives you the opportunity art using more eco-friendly cleaning products. I recommend trying Seventh Generation’s multi-surface cleaner as well as mops and brooms that have microfiber pads that can be taken off and run through the washer. O-Cedar makes a great wet mop.
6. Make Sure Utility Providers Know Your Address
New builds also mean a new address. This may not have made it into some of the utility systems and it may require that they come out and inspect the home to verify its location before they can start service.
This is probably more of an issue for things like cables and electricity and gas as the builder would have to coordinate it with them during the first build. But likewise if you’re hoping to have Internet available on the first day or so, make sure you get a hold of your Internet provider prior to move just to make sure there isn’t a delay in getting the installation done on time. Last thing most of us want to hear is that it will take 2 to 3 weeks to get cable in our brand new house.
7. Change Air Filter
After all of that construction you can imagine what’s been flying through the air. Most filters will need to be changed at move in and you’ll probably need to plan on changing the first one or two filters a little early.
Drywall dust likes to surface even months later as the house settles. Even a small draft from a major wind could blow out a pile wedged under a trim board (true story). If you struggle with allergies you could also consider having the ducts cleaned at six months or a year as well. Allergen filters can help a lot too.
Now that you’ve read my tips on moving into new construction, I want to hear from you! Did you find this advice helpful? What “must do” recommendations do you have when it comes to moving into new construction? Leave your suggestions in the comments below.