Move-In Ready Projects to Do After Buying a Home

Move-In Ready Projects to Do After Buying a Home

You beat the intense competition in this seller’s market and have bought a house. Congratulations! Now comes the fun, and sometimes expensive part, moving in and making your home move-in ready. Here are four projects you should do ASAP to get your home move-in ready and how to keep it affordable.

Move-in Ready Project #1: Change or Replace Locks

This move-in ready project is about safety first since you don’t want anyone but you to access your new home. If you purchased a new build, rekey or change the locks on the exterior. The same goes for an existing house since you don’t know how many copies of the keys have been made. 

Rekeying means recalibrating the pins in the existing locks so old keys can’t open them. According to Thumbtack, this can cost $350. The other option is to change the locks, which can cost from $80 to $200 per lock when you choose a professional locksmith. It’ll depend on the lock, too, because smart locks will be more expensive. If you want to give DIY a try, you can try to install them yourself for a fraction of the cost. 

Service the HVAC

Your next move-in ready task is to check your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system as it gets overlooked a lot. Before moving in, ask the previous owners when the last maintenance was performed. Depending on the type of filter system your HVAC uses, filters need to be replaced every month or six months. Older systems can reach the six-month expiration date, while newer systems should be checked once a year.

A full service will include inspecting and cleaning heating exchangers, coils, condensate pans, and the motor. The cooling system needs to be checked for leaks, damage, and potential mold or bacteria in the system. According to Angi, a regular air conditioning maintenance visit can be around $75 to $200. A service contract covering the entire HVAC system can be between $150 to $500 per year. 

To get your home move-in ready, test everything. Turn on the AC and heat to make sure it functions properly. Ask the former owners about the service history and when maintenance was last performed. 

Move-in Ready Project #3: Check for Leaks and Clogs

Move-in task #3 is to check your plumbing! If not, it will cost you a lot of money when it’s not working right. That’s why a sound plumbing system is crucial, as it will help you conserve water while also saving you money. Plumbing issues can range from a leaky faucet or clogged drain to more significant problems like burst pipes or issues with the main sewer lines. 

According to HomeGuide, unclogging a toilet or repairing a leaky faucet can range from $125 to $300. A leaky pipe repair can cost as much as $800, while a burst pipe can be up to $1,500. The most expensive will be the main sewer line problems which can average up to $3,700. 

The solution is not to skip the home inspection. Buyers are skipping the home inspection to make their offer more attractive to the sellers but it means you can end up with a home with structural damage that can cost you thousands of dollars. 

Repair the Floors

Rugs might have covered up some floor blemishes when you initially saw the home. Or maybe you only saw the house through photos and weren’t able to see all the details. Now that you’re moving in, repair the floors before moving in all the furniture. 

Depending on the flooring, repairs can range from $315 to $1,245, according to a Zillow survey. If the floor needs to be replaced, expect to start in the thousands. To avoid this costly move-in project, you should tour the place with your agent. Your real estate agent will have experience with floor conditions and the carpeting underneath. They can even help identify potential problems that you might not be able to see. 


If you’re ready to make your home move-in ready or are ready to buy a move-in ready home, contact us! Part of our expertise lies in remodeling and renovations, so we can quickly help you buy a place and implement these easy move-in-ready projects. 

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