If only moving into a new home was as simple as turning a key. We all dream of a hassle-free and relaxing move, but we’re often faced with doing some essential upgrades. Don’t be scared off by these small renovations; a few quick fixes when you first purchase will allow you to live there happily long-term. The best time to do renovations is when you have an empty space — your furniture will be safe from damage and you won’t have to put up with dust and hazardous odours.
5 Things to Fix Before Moving Into Your New Home
1. Seal the gaps
Caulking is a silicone product that fills gaps and cracks in your home to keep out moisture, air, water and bugs. To that end, you’ll want to caulk wherever any of those are a possibility. Water leakage, for example, is likely in your bathroom, so you’ll have to check the caulking around your tub, shower and toilet base. Air leakage is likely to happen through windows, so reseal your exterior window strips to reduce drafts (and your heating bill). Bugs can creep easily through baseboards, so caulk those to keep them out. Luckily, caulking is easy and cheap. You can learn to do it yourself on YouTube, or hire a professional to get it all done.
2. Colour your walls
Sellers often paint as part of the home staging process, but they may have skipped this step or picked a colour you dislike. Painting is one of the cheapest ways to refresh an entire home and make it feel like your own. It’s also much easier to paint when you don’t have to move and cover any furniture. Just make sure anything wall-mounted (like towel rods) are at the level you want first.
3. Clean carpets
An obvious to-do if the previous owners were smokers or had pets, but the process also kills mites and germs. Your carpet is one of those things you probably don’t realize how dirty it is until it’s clean. Treat your new home and yourself to freshly cleaned carpets.
4. Clear ducts and vents
The previous homeowner is likely to have lapsed on this routine maintenance item since it’s so easy to overlook (out of sight out of mind!) but that doesn’t mean it’s of any less importance. A clogged dryer vent, for example, poses a serious fire risk. Entire furnace systems have broken down because someone forgot to change a $5 filter. And for any family member suffering from allergies, this can be a lung-saver. This task is easiest done when calling in a professional.
5. Lock it down
Who knows how many people have access to your place? Housekeepers, nannies, friends and relatives of the previous owners could all have spare keys. Hiring a locksmith now will pay dividends in future security. While you’re at it, consider changing to a keypad entry system to make any future lock changes simple and free.
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