The emotions you face while buying a home are great, from excitement of locating an amazing home, to the disappointments of losing the home to another buyer. But, once the excitement levels subside after you find your new home and the offer is accepted, you need to start planning for your move. You need to pack and move all of your belongings, plan for and execute any updates or changes to your new home, and deal with the countless administrative items such as changing your address with banks, credit cards, cell phone companies, and signing up for home utilities and amenities.

If this all seems a little overwhelming to you, don’t worry you are not alone. This is why we put together a list of 5 things you need to do before moving into your new home.

1. Replace the Locks

It is always a best practice to change all the locks in your home before moving in any of your belongings. This is a small investment in ensuring your family and belongings are safe and secure. Even if all the supposed keys to the locks are given to you, you can never be sure who has made a copy of one of the keys and what their intentions are.

2. Test Drive Your Home

The idea of test driving your home may seem strange, but testing to make sure all faucets, drains, and toilets are working, ensuring all lights and electrical sockets are operating properly, and that your heater and air conditioning units are functioning properly are important to test before moving in. If you do find issues, it gives you the opportunity to address before you start living in the home. You may have checked the house yourself or even had it inspected during the purchasing process, but conducting a secondary check ensures everything is in the same condition as you expected. If you do need to go back to the previous owner, you have a better chance of proving the issue was pre-existing if you haven’t moved in yet.

3. Check Your Windows and Doors

Examine all of the windows and doors of your new home. Visually inspect for any damage or signs of bad seals. Test their structural integrity and functionality by pushing on them slightly and opening and closing each separately. Look for potential energy efficiency issues, such as drafts or gaps between the window or door and the frame. If any damage, drafts, or gaps are found consider window replacement or door replacement prior to moving in. This will ensure that there are no potential opportunities for potential intruders to take advantage of and that you are not overspending on your energy bills.

4. Test Smoke and CO2 Alarms

Test to ensure that all of your smoke and CO2 detectors and alarms are functioning properly before you move in. While you are at it, check the expiry date on your fire extinguishers. If you need to replace any batteries or units, do so before you move in. If your home does not have a smoke detector or alarm, have one installed right away.

5. Clean All Appliances

Thoroughly clean and disinfect all of the appliances that came with the home purchase. Bacteria and microbes are known to grow inside of stoves, fridges, washers, dryers, and even dishwashers. Ensuring they are cleaned and disinfected prior to you using them will ensure your safety and wellbeing while preventing any potential contamination.

The stress associated with moving to a new home is high enough as it is. Having the necessary issues fixed before you move in with your family, will help make the process just a little bit easier.