Fred Griffin: Moving Day is Here! Home Buyers Need to Do These 25 Things Right Away!

Moving Day is Here! Home Buyers Need to Do These 25 Things Right Away!

     Welcome to your new home!  After weeks of searching for a house, then waiting even more weeks for the Bank to originate the mortgage, the Big Day is upon you.  It is time to move into your new house!

     You may be moving across town, you may be moving to a new town.  You may be a first time home buyer, you may be someone who has moved before.  Whatever situation you are in, you must do these 25 Tasks as quickly as possible.  Your move will be simpler, safer, and complete!


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25 Things Home Owners Must Do on Moving Day

1.  Keep a Survival Kit of Human Necessities in your Car         

Bottled Water
Food that is ready to eat, such as energy bars, apples, peanut butter, dried fruit, canned meat.
Paper plates, plastic utensils, plastic cups. 
Prescription Medicines (and other medicines like Pepto-Bismol, aspirin, Rolaids)
First Aid Kit
Toilet Paper, Soap
Towels, Paper Towels
Pillows and Blankets
Shaving Kit, Cosmetic Bag
Change of Clothes for everyone in your Household
Cash in Small Denominations. 
Cell Phone Battery Chargers
Toolbox with Basic Tools


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2.  Refill your Prescriptions before you move to a new town. 

3.  Board your Pets at a kennel or with a Veterinarian. 

     They will be safer out of the way; the Movers will not trip over your pets.   

4.  Flashlights 

     Put one flashlight near each door or exit.

5.  Change the Locks on your new House; secure all Doors and Windows.   

     Schedule a Locksmith to meet you on the day that you arrive.  Give new Keys to each member of your household.  Test the keys, make sure that they work.

     Change the frequency or code on Garage Door Openers and Gate Openers. 

     Make certain that all windows close and lock properly.

6.  Locate Emergency Exits 

     Each member of your family should participate in this exercise.  Can you find the doors in the dark?  Can you unlock the doors in the dark, from the inside and outside?  Open and close all windows; know how they work.


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7.  Find the Gas Shut Off Valve

     Know how to turn it off.  Call the Gas Company or a Gas Technician for assistance.    

8.  Find the Main Water Shut-Off Valve

     Know how to turn it off.  Contact your Utility company or a Plumber for assistance.

9.  Find the Main Electric Circuit Breaker

     Know how to turn it off.  Contact your Utility company or an Electrician for assistance.

10.  Locate the Thermostats

     Know how to turn the heater and air conditioner on and off.  

11.  Find the Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

     Test them.  Have they passed the expiration date?  Do they need new Batteries?

12.  Fire Extinguishers 

     Put one in the kitchen, put one in the garage.  Ask your local Fire Department for advice.


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13.  Paint your House Numbers

     Repaint the numbers on the front door, on the curb, on your mailbox.  Yes, everybody uses GPS, but you want that number visible for 911, FedEx, and the Pizza Delivery Guy.

14.  Memorize your New Address

     Have each member of your household recite it.   

15.   Driver License, Voter Registration

     Change your address.  In most States, this is required by law. 

16.  Meet the Neighbors! 

     Meet their pets, too. 

17.  Garbage Day

     What days do they pick up the garbage?  What about Recyclables, Environmental Waste, Tree Branches, Bulky Items, Appliances?

18.  Mailperson, UPS Driver, FedEx, and other Delivery People

     Meet and greet!  Where is the nearest Post Office, UPS Store, and FedEx office?

19.  Homeowners' Association or Condominium Association

     Meet the Officers and Directors of your HOA.  Read the Deed Restrictions again.  See a Lawyer if you need legal advice.


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20.  Filters

     Air Conditioner Filters, Range Hood Filters, any other Filters.  Buy replacement filters now; you will have them when you need them.

21.   Light Bulbs

     Stock up now on light bulbs for the inside and outside of your house.  You will have the bulbs when you need them.


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22.   Cancel your Previous Services and Subscriptions!

     Make certain that you have canceled your previous Utilities, Cable TV, Homeowner's Insurance, Alarm Company, Telephone or Internet Service, Newspaper, and Pest Control. 

23.  Change your Address

     Fill out the USPS Change of Address Form.  That form instructs the Postal Service to forward your mail to your new Address. However, do not expect the Postal Service to change your Address for you. Contact important institutions such as your Bank, Insurance company, Credit Cards, Social Security, and Medicare directly.  YOU will be responsible if your mail is lost, delayed, or sent to your old address. 

24.  Florida Homestead Exemption

     Visit the Property Appraiser's Office and file for Homestead Exemption.  You may be eligible for up to $50,000 in exemptions.  In some Florida counties, you can do this online or via the telephone.  However, I suggest that you physically visit your Property Appraiser's Office to make certain that your Exemptions are in effect. 

25.   The Deed to Your New Home

     Make certain that your Deed is properly recorded!  In Florida, it is imperative that your Deed be recorded in the Pubic Record.  Contact or visit your County Clerk of the Court's Office a few days after the Closing; ask them to verify that your Deed was recorded. 


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     You are moving into your new home.  You need to do all of the above 25 tasks as rapidly as possible. 

     Congratulations to you, and Welcome Home!



Frederick Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker    850-545-1901


Tallahassee Florida Metropolitan Area

Exclusive Representation for Buyers and Sellers 

Call Fred  850-545-1901


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Frederick Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker    850-545-1901


Disclaimer:  Nothing in the above blog article is to be construed as legal advice, tax advice, or financial advice.  For legal advice see an attorney.   For tax advice or financial advice see a tax attorney, certified public accountant, or other qualified professional.


Comment balloon 16 commentsFred Griffin • March 16 2016 01:28PM


Excellent Blog Fred Griffin - this should be a hand-out with the house keys for every new home buyer (first timer or seasoned buyer)! 

Posted by Allie Angeloni (Long Realty ) about 2 years ago

Fred what a great list of 'to-do's for home buyers.  I agree with Allie Angeloni it's perfect to hand out to all buyers. I'll I'd need is a few tweaks to fit our area and les voila!

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS, Broker, Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate! (Phoenix Property Shoppe) about 2 years ago

Good evening Fred Griffin . Good list of thing for new owners to do. Thanks for sharing with us.

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) about 2 years ago

Fred- this is excellent!  We've moved several times and this list is what anyone who is moving into a new home needs.  I especially like numbers 4 through 12. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) about 2 years ago

Allie Angeloni   Thank you, Allie!   A number of these thing would have been covered in a Home Inspection, if the Buyer was present and the Inspector explained them (water shut-off, AC filters, etc.).

Posted by Fred Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) about 2 years ago

Hi, Anna Banana Kruchten 

   I customized this Florida at the end (our Homestead Exemption on Property Taxes, etc.).  But it could be "tweaked" as you say, for any area.

  Thanks for commenting!

Posted by Fred Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) about 2 years ago

TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc. 

    The Home Inspectors I recommend here in Tallahassee usually cover the cut-off valves, the filters, etc.  But Buyers may need to be reminded after TMI during the Buying process.

Posted by Fred Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) about 2 years ago

Kathy Streib 

  I have moved a lot of times, too.  Much of the info for this blog comes from my own moving experiences!

  Thanks for stopping by.

Posted by Fred Griffin, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) about 2 years ago

Extensive list Fred and well worth having on hand.  Thank you.  Mark

Posted by Mark Don McInnes, Sandpoint, North Idaho Real Estate - 208-255.6227 about 2 years ago

It had totally slipped my mind to tell the buyers for tomorrow about homested.  I need to do that.  Nice list.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) about 2 years ago

Hi Fred - this is a great list. I have a list with most of these, but not paint the numbers again. I hate it when I can't find the house numbers. so I like your idea.

Posted by Larry Brewer - Benchmark Realty llc (Benchmark Realty LLc) about 2 years ago

Hi Fred this is an excellent list. It is really necessary, people may not be thinking about everything they need to at that time, so much your mind.

Posted by Noah Seidenberg, Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917 (Coldwell Banker) about 2 years ago

This is an excellent list to share with home buyers.

Have an outstanding weekend.

Posted by Roy Kelley, Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs (Realty Group Referrals) about 2 years ago

Super list, Fred. I had most of these on my list... except for the items having to do with Florida specific things.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC) about 2 years ago

Fantastic and complete listing of tips and advice for moving day, Fred. I'll be sharing it as many places as possible!

Posted by Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi, 708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience (NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656) almost 2 years ago

This is a great list for new home buyers to go by.  Great job Fred!

Posted by Evelyn Johnston, The People You Know, Like and Trust! (Friends & Neighbors Real Estate) almost 2 years ago