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Great Tips for Before You Move Into Your New Home

What to Do Before the Moving Truck Arrives

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Door Molding

Custom molding enhances this unusual arched door.

Coral Nafie

Moving into a new home is an life experience that few people describe as "fun." But with our tips of things to do before you move in, you'll be ready when the furniture arrives.

The move can totally consume you for a long time: planning, packing, moving, cleaning.

When you arrive in your new home, you're faced with even more challenges. It may seem a small thing to decide where to put the best china or everyday dishes, but after all the work moving out of the old home, the last thing you need is another big decision or another major project.

But doing some work to your new home right away will make moving in feel great.

If you're moving into a new house, you may not need to do anything at all. Lucky you!

But if you've bought a home with carpet you hate, you're probably thinking that it has to go. Should you wait until you're moved in, or tackle the job now?

You may decide that it's too much to think about right now, that you should leave the decision about replacement for later after you've settled in. You may not have the budget or time to do anything but move. But be sure to weigh in the "cost" to you in both hassle and time if you wait to do a necessary project at a later date.

Replacing flooring is a major project, and if you have the money and you can make just this one decision at moving time, you'll really be doing yourself a favor. If you put it off, you'll be faced with moving all your furniture out of the rooms. What a bother! Not just for you, but for the flooring installers as well! There will be furniture all around the place, and you'll have to move it back into the room when they're done. If you can do it when you move, be sure to order the flooring well in advance of your move. Make arrangements to have new flooring installed a day or two before you move in. Cover the new flooring with mats, tarps, or area rugs so the movers don't track in dirt or scratch the wood. Then, when they set your sofa and coffee table in place -- you'll be home.

Below are some other pre-move-in projects that can save you time and trouble.

Choose the projects that are the most pressing. If your budget won't allow re-carpeting the entire house, just do one floor. If you can't face paint decisions for every single room, then just do the rooms where the decisions are easy.

Painting - Whether you do the work yourself or hire someone to do it, it's a lot easier to paint an empty room. There will be no need to move furniture, take down draperies, clear out the closets, or take every picture or mirror off the walls. Allow several days to repaint before the movers show up, especially if you'll be doing the work yourself. This type of work always takes longer than you think. Or, hire a crew (professional painters or friends) to come in and get it over with in a day or two. Painting even part of the house before you move in can be a terrific time saver. If you can't decide on colors, then just have everything painted a clean white, a pretty light beige, or other background color you love -- depending on what works best with your furniture and color schemes. Once the major patching, priming, trim work, and base coats are in, adding another wall color at a later date can be a snap.

Crown Molding - Does anyone not love the look of crown molding? It's a wonderful luxury to be able to install molding around the whole house all at once, before you move into your new home. Be sure to prime and pre-paint the strips of molding before installation, just before painting the interior walls. You may need to do some touch up at the joints and nail holes, but that's a lot easier than standing on a ladder for days trying to paint three coats fo paint on the molding near the ceiling!

Next Page: See 5 More Pre-Move-In Projects

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