13 Things To Do After The Close

To help simplify and expedite your transition from closing on your home to living in it, here’s a list of 13 things to do after the close.


What to do after closing on a house? 13 Things to do After The Close

Buying a home can be an arduous process, which is all the more reason to celebrate when escrow finally closes and you’re holding the keys to your new home. That said, while the paperwork is (mostly) finished once the keys are in your hands, there is still work to be done. From safely filing away the property deed and home inspection report, to paying your first mortgage payment, new homeowners like you have a laundry list of tasks to complete and things that close your home.

To help simplify and expedite your transition from closing on your home to living in it, here’s a list of 13 things to do after the close.

Plan Home Maintenance

Holding the title to a new home comes with lots of work. Even if you plan to hire out the maintenance on your new house, it’s important to create a document that lists out everything that will require regular or periodic maintenance.

Since you’ll have had a home inspection done while you were in escrow, you can use the information from that document to plan maintenance on bigger ticket items such as the roof or HVAC system.

Test Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors

Some maintenance tasks, such as testing carbon monoxide and smoke detectors, can’t wait. You, your family’s, and your friends’ safety all depend on functional detectors, so as soon as you’re done basking in the glory of closing title and escrow, check the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Do a Water Heater Check

Ideally, you (or an inspector) will have checked on the home’s water heater. But before closing, you can’t drain the water heater and adjust its settings, two tasks that may be necessary after you move in.

You can also start making your home your own by adjusting the water heater’s temperature and pressure to your preferences. There is plenty of research online that will help you reduce your energy bill and conserve your water heater.

Locate Circuit Breakers and Shut-off Valves

Taking emergency preparedness a step further, you should be able to locate circuit breakers and shut-off valves quickly in the event of an emergency. Doing so can significantly limit the damage done to your home if you have, for example, a plumbing emergency. If other adults will live in, or look after the home, make sure they know where the shut-offs are as well.

Make Copies of Documents

It’s true—you’ll have to do a little more paperwork before you can start enjoying your home. But compared to the paperwork involved in the home buying process—from homeowners and title insurance to closing notices and disclosures—making copies of important documents related to your home purchase should be easy

Endpoint recommends keeping your buyer’s agent and purchase agreement, including any amendments; seller and closing disclosures; home inspection report; title insurance policy; and the property deed.  This may be one of the first close things to do after closing on a house.

Change Your Address Information

Moving can be stressful, so don’t add to that stress by forgetting to change your address information. Contact the following people and companies to streamline the moving process:

  1. Insurance companies
  2. Your bank
  3. Tax agencies
  4. Utility companies
  5. The post office
  6. Credit card providers
  7. The DMV
  8. Your employer
  9. Subscription services
  10. Loan providers
  11. Other service providers, such as doctors, accountants, etc.
  12. Your friends and family

Add Important Phone Numbers

In case of emergency, you need to know who to call and how to contact them. Luckily, just about every one of us has a smartphone that can act as our phonebook. At a minimum, add the phone numbers of your locksmith as well as your warranty and insurance companies.

Contact the New School District

If you have children and you’ve moved into a new school district, you’ll need to let the new district know. This is especially important to do shortly after closing if you plan to move to your new home in the middle of the school year. Contact the school district for your new neighborhood and keep in mind that different districts will have different processes for transferring new students into their district.

Change Locks and/or Keypads

Your home purchase agreement should spell out that the seller is required to turn over all of their keys to you. However, practically speaking, the seller may or may not know about keys that he or she lost or lent to someone. So it’s a good practice—for security purposes—to change all the locks on your new home. Additionally, if the home has keypads for certain doors, you should change the codes on those as well.  

Take Window Measurements

It might seem an odd thing to do after closing, but since your home is empty and your windows are easy to access, it’s a great time to take window measurements. Even if you don’t plan to have window treatments done for a while, it’ll be far easier to take the measurements when there isn’t a bunch of furniture in your house.

Freshen Up the Place

Just as it’s easiest to take window measurements before moving in, it’s also easier to do any work, such as cleaning or painting, when furniture isn’t in your way. Most likely, you have already been thinking about all the things you wanted to do, to make your home your own, during the title and escrow process. But if you hadn’t thought about it yet, the time right after closing is perfect to plan how you’d like to freshen up your new house.

New window treatments, a fresh coat (or two) of interior paint, installing crown molding or a backsplash, and replacing exterior and interior doors are just a few of the things you can do to start making your new house into a home.

Prepare for Your First Mortgage Payment

Especially if you’ve never owned a home before, you may not be in the habit of paying a mortgage each month. But it’s important—for obvious reasons—to pay your mortgage payment on time and in full. Make sure you know when your first payment is and that you set aside enough money to cover it.

Depending on when you closed your home purchase transaction, the amount of your first mortgage payment may differ significantly. These payments, interest, and dates, are broken down in your closing disclosure

Meet the Neighbors

With all the new sights, sounds, and routines of moving into a new home, getting to know your new neighbors can help you build a sense of familiarity with your new surroundings. They’re sure to be curious, so when you see your neighbors, wave and say hello. It never hurts to have a good relationship with the people you’ll be sharing a neighborhood with.

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