Two Must-Have Checklists for Settling into a New Home

Photo by Pexles

After you’ve brought in the last box from the moving truck, you only have a moment or two before it’s time to start unpacking and turning your new house into a loved home. It’s important to have a plan for settling in comfortably, but it’s equally as important to not prolong the process. Moving is a major life change. Getting comfy and cozy in your home takes time, patience, and planning. Here are a few ideas to help the process go smoothly and quickly—and maybe you’ll even have a little fun along the way.

Maintenance Checklist

Whether this is your first time as a homeowner or you’ve been around the block a time or two, there are some basic maintenance tasks you’ll want to keep on your radar. Some, like replacing the air filters in your HVAC system, will occur on a regular schedule, while others, like cleaning gutters, might only happen once or twice a year. Making a checklist and setting reminders will help you stay organized and keep you on schedule for those routine tasks. Be sure the following tasks are on the list:

  • Change your air conditioning filter the day you move in—and maintain a consistent schedule of changing and cleaning it every few months. An easy way to make sure you don’t forget is to sign up for a FilterBuy subscription service, which will deliver new filters to your home on a set schedule.
  • Wash curtains and drapes periodically to remove any allergens or pollutants like dust, dander, pet hair, and pollen. Consider doing the same for rugs and mats, too.
  • Keep up with regular lawn and yard tasks like mowing, hedging, weeding, pruning, and other landscaping chores. You can manage these projects yourself or hire a company to tackle these lawn maintenance chores on a regular basis.
  • Check smoke and carbon monoxide alarms monthly and change the batteries out once a year. Some people pick a certain day—like the day you set your clocks back or your oldest child’s birthday—and make that the “battery day” each year.

Decorating Checklist

Purchasing a new home can rack up a lot of costs—and often those little nickels and dimes here and there can really add up. If you are managing a tighter budget, or just trying to monitor your spending habits, setting a budget for new decor can be incredibly useful. You’ll want to prioritize your decorating needs. A great way to do that is to start with decor that provides both form and function—in other words, it looks good and serves an important purpose. Some of these kinds of decorating tips include:

  • Hanging plantation shutters, blinds, shades, or sheers. All of these options add warmth and color to your home, but also help regulate the temperature and save on utility costs.
  • Using tables that double as storage for toys, games, arts and crafts, and any other activities you want to bring out and put away quickly.
  • Updating light fixtures so they are modern and energy efficient. Wall sconces can help save space, while track lighting can accentuate areas that have specific uses, like reading nooks, art displays, and kitchen countertops.

Settling into a new house isn’t just about unpacking your possessions; it’s about feeling at-home in your house. Take the time to make checklists, not only for maintenance and decorating, but also for any healthy routines you want to establish, like walking the dog in the morning, eating dinner together, or caring for a family garden. Exploring new traditions can help you turn a good house into a loving home.

Suzie Wilson is an interior designer with more than 20 years experience. What started as a hobby (and often, a favor to friends) turned into a passion for creating soothing spaces in homes of every size and style. While her goal always includes making homes look beautiful, her true focus is on fashioning them into serene, stress-free environments that inspire tranquility in all who enter. The Ultimate Guide to Prepping Your Home for an Open House is filled with tips, tricks and other advice based on Suzie’s years of experience in interior home design that will set you up for success.