First home buyers’ moving tips
By: Smile Elite
April 14, 2024

Buying your first home can be a daunting but exciting challenge and the journey can often oscillate between exhilarating and intimidating. Whether you have meticulously planned this milestone or find yourself drawn to homeownership as a more logical choice as rental markets tighten, the transition to homeowner is pivotal. 

After what seems like endless inspections, auctions and offers, the joy and sense of achievement in securing your first property is understandably immense, and you are eager to move to the next phase: moving in and making it truly your own. 

Moving is never an easy task and does demand attention to detail. Having a comprehensive moving house checklist for the all-important move is indispensable. From redirecting mail, organising power connections, removalists, etc, etc, the list can seem endless. 

Beyond the excitement of personalising your space to suit your own taste and needs, there are some crucial steps to ensure your new nest is a secure and welcoming environment. 

Here are some essential tips to consider as you make your move:

Change or Re-Key Door Locks for Peace of Mind – Something you may not have considered, but changing or re-keying your home’s locks is a critical safety measure. This prevents previous owners or their acquaintances from accessing your home. You have no idea how many copies of the house keys are floating around from the prior owners. Whether you opt for DIY changing the locks or hire a professional, it will ensure peace of mind and offers you a chance to customise your home’s security. Costs to change locks or to re-key (the cheaper option) will vary, so get a few quotes if hiring a professional to do the job.

Consult Your Home Inspection Report - If you had a home inspection report done before settlement, you have a good idea of any issues needing attention. From the need for new smoke alarm batteries to assessing the lifespan of your water heater (hint: replace if over 10 years), this report guides your initial home improvements.

Of course, there may be bigger items to address as well. Always check your roof and window condition reports to see if any immediate repairs are required. This will help manage future utility bills.

Ensure a Pest Free Environment – Even if invisible to the naked eye, pests can lurk in your new home. Scheduling a pest control service is a wise move to consider and can save you from unwelcome surprises, maintaining a pest-free living space. The previous owners may have kept pest services up to date, but an initial service will ensure you keep pests at bay.

The Merits of a Good Clean – Before settling in a deep clean of your new home is highly advisable. Depending on your budget and time permitting, you can either do the deep clean yourself, or you can hire professionals. Once again, quotes vary, so it is wise to compare options as the prices may vary considerably. Cleaning light fittings, stoves, air conditioners, windows, carpets and bathrooms before you move in will ensure a fresh start. A clean slate makes your new home truly yours!

Understanding Home Warranty Coverage - Home Warranty insures the home owner (either the original owner or subsequent owners) against: non-completion of the building contract or failure of the builder to correct faults, which are deemed by law to be the builder's responsibility, for a nominated warranty period. A home warranty can be a lifesaver, covering everything from construction issues to major repairs like roof leaks or HVAC system failures. If your home is new or relatively new, check if a warranty is in place and what it covers. This knowledge could save you considerable expense in repairs before hiring a handyman.


Additional Tips to Consider

Plan Your Budget: Beyond the immediate moving costs, anticipate future home improvements and set aside a budget.

Neighbourhood Knowledge: Get to know your neighbourhood and community resources. Introduce yourself to your neighbours. Knowing your neighbourhood can enrich your living experience and provide support networks. 

Locate each of the following:

  • Grocery stores
  • Petrol stations
  • Restaurants
  • Police stations
  • Fire stations
  • Hospitals
  • Post offices
  • Your children's school

Become familiar with your new home. Locate and make note of the following:

  • Circuit breaker
  • Gas line shut-off
  • Water line shut-off
  • Water heater
  • Heater/Air Conditioner
  • Hot water system
  • Previously-installed connections for internet access and telephone/ television hookups.

Living Sustainability: Consider energy-efficient updates and sustainable practices from the get-go. Doing this can help reduce living costs and also benefit the environment.

Welcome home!

The transition from dreaming about your first home to the reality of actually moving in is full of anticipation, excitement, and, of course some anxiety. Embrace the journey with these simple steps and enjoy. 

Acknowledgements: Dettol, Better Homes and Gardens, Kristine Gill, Budget Direct