Moving into your new home is exciting! It also means you’ve got work to do.

1. Change the Locks

You don’t know who else has a set of keys to your home, so change the locks. This ensures you’re the only person who has access. Install new deadbolts yourself for as little as $10 per lock, or call a locksmith – if you supply the new locks, they typically charge about $20-$30 per lock for labor.

2. Check for Plumbing Leaks

Your home inspector should do this for you before closing, but it never hurts to double-check. Keep an eye out for dripping faucets, running toilets and check your water heater for signs of a leak. Trick: Check your water meter at the beginning and end of a two hour window when no water is being used. If your reading is different, you have a leak.

3. Steam Clean Carpets

Do this before you move your furniture in, and your new home life will be off to a fresh start! You can pay a professional carpet cleaning service – about $50 per room, most services require a minimum of about $100 before they will come out – or you can rent a steam cleaner for about $30 per day and do the work yourself.

4. Wipe Out Your Cabinets

Before you unpack your dishes and bathroom supplies, make sure to wipe inside and outside your cabinets. Preferably use a non-toxic cleaner and replace contact paper if necessary.

5. Get Rid of Critters

Make sure to get rid of mice, rats, bats, termites, roaches and any other uninvited guests. There are any number of DIY ways to get rid of pests, but if you need to bring in the professionals, an initial visit from a pest removal service will run about $100-$300, followed bi-monthly or quarterly visits at about $50 each time.

6. Look for the Circuit Breaker Box and Main Water Valve.

It’s a good idea to figure out which fuses control what parts of your house and label them accordingly. This will take two people: one to stand in the room where the power is supposed to go off, and one to trip the fuse and yell, “Did that work? How about now?”


You’ll want to know how to turn off your main water valve if you have a plumbing emergency, if a hurricane or tornado is headed your way, or if you’re going out of town. Locate the valve – it could be inside or outside your home – and turn the knob until it’s off. Test it by turning on any faucet in the house; no water should come out.


Lisa Southern Real Estate is located at 15 E. Martin St. Raleigh, NC 27601. If you or someone you know is looking to buy a home call us today at 919-800-0880 or visit our website to start your home search now!


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