Congratulations! You just closed and received the keys to your new home. You can finally breathe a sigh of relief.
But while you’re understandably excited about settling into a new place, the first few days (or weeks) of moving can be stressful and overwhelming. There’s a lot to do and some tasks can easily fall through the cracks.
How can you make the transition as simple as possible? Here’s a post-closing checklist of what to do after you move.
1. Safely store closing documents
Closing on a mortgage takes about one to two hours, and during this time you’ll sign a stack of paperwork. You’ll receive a copy of all the signed documents before leaving the closing agent’s office.
Keep these documents in a secured place. This can include a filing cabinet, or maybe upload them to a cloud-based website like Dropbox.
2. Change the locks
The house keys you receive at closing are often the same keys used by the seller. Keep in mind, they might have given copies to relatives or friends. And if so, they probably didn’t ask to get the keys back.
To err on the side of caution, change the locks on your doors as soon as possible. And if the house has keypads for entry, reprogram these with new codes. Ask the previous homeowner for instructions on how to reprogram keypads.
3. Set up utility services
Once you know your closing date, contact utility companies in advance to set up services. This way, you’ll have electricity, gas, and water on move-in day. For other services like cable, Internet, and security, you might arrange set up after closing. It can take a few days for utility companies to fit you into their schedule, so the earlier you request services the better.
4. Change your address
You should also request mail forwarding through the United States Postal Service. Any mail addressed to your previous residence will automatically forward to your new home. It can take up to two weeks for a forwarding request to take effect. Contact the post office as soon as you have a closing date.
You’ll also need to change your address with other providers as soon as you close. For example:
• Insurance provider
• Subscription companies
• Gym membership
• Medical providers
• Credit card company
• Your employer
5. Update your drivers license
Also, notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of your new address. Fortunately, you don’t have to visit the DMV in-person to change your address. You can update this information online through the DMV’s website. Once you’ve updated your residence, you’ll receive a new license in the mail.
6. Schedule a deep cleaning
Some sellers clean the property before closing. But it doesn’t hurt to plan your own deep cleaning or hire a company for this service. This can include thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting the kitchen and bathrooms, wiping windows and baseboards, vacuuming, and cleaning the inside of appliances. You can schedule other services, too, like tile and grout cleaning and carpet cleaning.
7. Create a home maintenance to-do list
A home inspection is highly recommended when buying a property. But even when an inspection report reveals minor concerns, sellers might not agree to all repairs. If so, you’ll have a few maintenance projects upon moving in. This list might include powering wash the house, improving the landscaping, painting, servicing the HVAC system, changing air filters, cleaning windows and doors, testing detectors, and cleaning air vents. Create a to-do list and maintenance schedule so that you’re not overwhelmed by these projects.
Whether you’re buying your first home or your fifth, First Bank has mortgage solutions to suit the needs of different borrowers. Contact our loan experts to begin your home buying journey.