After you finish signing at the closing of your new home, you’re handed the keys and the house is officially yours! But, there are some things you should do to make sure the transition from your old place to your new address goes as smoothly as possible.
Every area of the country is different, which can mean different protocols and rules to follow. But no matter where you live, here are a few important things to do after you get possession of your new home.
Change Your Driver’s License
Every state is different, but some states require a change of address on your license within 10 days of moving. If you are new to a state, you may have to take a written exam and possibly even a driving test.
Secure Closing Papers and Other Documents
If you haven’t done so already, get a safe deposit box at your bank or purchase a fireproof safe. Put all your closing papers inside it, along with your passport, birth certificate, Social Security card and other official papers for safe keeping.
Check With Your Auto Insurance
Insurance companies are picky about where you live, and prices do change from place to place. Florida requires that your insurance be from a Florida company.
Meet Your Neighbors and Others in the Community
This can be hard for some, but you really should get to know your neighbors by introducing yourself. Joining groups on Meetup.com or a community Facebook group helps you connect with other new residents in your area who have the same interests.
Check Your Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
While most homes on the market today come equipped with fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, most homeowners usually forget to test these crucial safety systems to make sure they work.
Testing your smoke detector should become a part of your housekeeping routine and according to FEMA, should be done at least once a month.
While the specific way to test your detector depends on the manufacturer of your smoke detector, most detectors have an easily accessible test button on the face of the device. Once you press this button, wait a few seconds, and then a loud and piercing sound should emit from the device.
Hire A Fireplace Expert
Whether it’s a wood burning or gas fireplace, get a professional to check it out. With thumbs up from the expert, you can then enjoy cozy nights near the warmth of the fire.
Change Furnace Filters
It’s best if you make sure to replace furnace and air conditioner filters every three months. There are lots of options out there when choosing air filters for different seasons. Choosing the right filter can not only save money by letting your furnace and air conditioner work more efficiently, but it also improves air quality, removes odors and even prevents growth of antimicrobial particulates.
Find the Main Water Shutoff & Fuse Box
Make sure you know where your circuit breaker box and main water valve are located in case of emergencies, or just in case you’re about to fix a power or water issue and need to turn off the electricity or cut off the water supply.
Change Every Lock & Key Codes
You never know who the former owners gave a house key to. A locksmith can rekey your locks if they are expensive ones, and some stores can also rekey certain brand named locks, which can be done quite inexpensively.
You can also choose to get four digit keyless locks. That can be a great option especially with kids who lose their keys all the time anyways. Also, don’t forget to reset a garage door keypad from the outside of your garage. There are great instructions online on how to do it, or call a garage door company for assistance.
Reset the numeric entry codes for electronic garage doors, gates and any other entry doors in the home. If the previous owner didn’t leave any instructions, look up the keypad manufacturer online, where many offer instructions for resetting their units.
Update Your Address
Supply your employer, financial intuitions, loan companies, insurance providers, utilities and any business you frequently make payments to with your updated contact details. Luckily, much of this work can be completed online.
Then it’s time to relax and enjoy the new home of your dreams.