So, you’ve just moved the last box into the house of your dreams. The movers are gathering their equipment and walking out the door. Everything on your checklists has been marked off but, before you can pat yourself on the back for a job well done, you turn to face the mountain of cardboard in need of your attention.

Uh oh.

Where to start? What’s the most efficient use of your time? Has anyone flipped a light switch to see if the electricity is actually hooked up? Is the fridge cooling?

Before you send yourself into a downward spiral of questions, know we are here to help. We’ve come up with a can’t-miss list of things to do AFTER the move is over, one that will help you prioritise what needs to happen ASAP and what can wait. Take a deep breath and let’s have a look.

1. Check Moving Boxes and Furniture for Damage

Odds are, you’ve done your due diligence and hired a reputable removalist team who is fully licensed and insured. Nine times out of ten, movers do a fantastic job and everything arrives at the new location safely. Out of an abundance of caution, we recommend doing a visual check of all boxes and furniture to make sure everything arrived in good condition. If a box appears damaged, open it immediately and check the contents.

If anything is damaged or broken, contact your moving company immediately. Their solitary goal is to make sure you are happy with the work they performed. They will likely resolve the issue quickly.

2. Unpack the Essentials

We know…you’re likely exhausted from a full day of moving. On your first night in the new house, only unpack things in the rooms that will be used the most—namely, the kitchen, bedrooms, and at least one bathroom.

No room needs to be fully set up, but you’ll definitely want sheets on your bed…even if that bed is a mattress on the floor for now. Same goes for the kitchen—unpack a few plates, cups and enough silverware for the family, and clear a path to the refrigerator.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, are the bathroom essentials. Dig out your shower caddy, towels, and body products. After a long day of moving, a hot bath or shower is going to make you feel like a million bucks.

As you move beyond the first few days, begin prioritising the unpacking process. Getting the living room and kitchen set up should take priority over deciding where to store the Christmas decorations you won’t need for months.

3. Inspect Your New Home

It’s time to get to know your new place—and I mean really get to know it. Take time to familiarise yourself with the location of your water valve and circuit box. Make sure you have the tools needed to shut off the water valve in the event of an emergency. Go through each electrical circuit and confirm they are labeled accurately.

4. Change the Locks

Yes, the former owners are supposed to give you every key. Yes, it’s unlikely they’d have any reason to come back to your home anyway.

But…

You will feel safer and your home will be more secure if you change the locks on every outside door. Shop around and ask for a quote from a couple of local locksmiths—they can likely have your home secured within a day.

5. Get Rid of Packing Materials (or Save Them…or Repurpose Them)

Unpacking from a move can leave your home looking like the saddest Christmas morning ever—nothing but bland boxes and paper, and every box you unpack is full of your own stuff.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed wondering what to do with all the materials. Luckily, we wrote an entire blog on the topic (which you can read by clicking here). It’s up to you whether you save them for the next move, recycle what you can, or use them for another purpose (seriously, the blog has some great repurposing tips!).

6. Update Your Address

You’ll want to update your address with companies sending you bills, medical offices, and on your car registration. But don’t forget about all of those online shopping sites you use on a regular basis. There’s nothing worse than clicking “buy now” only to realise the new owners of your old home will be receiving that 4-speed blender in 2 – 3 days. Really, you shouldn’t have!
Taking care of these tasks can help settle into your space faster. Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying your new home, surrounded by everything you need…except that 4-speed blender (it was a thoughtful gift).

Here’s to making your new house a home!

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