In episode five of Let’s Get Snagging we are covering what you need to do when moving into a new home. Now that your new home is nearing completion and it’s nearly time for you to get your keys, it is time to think about what to do when moving. Apart from this being exciting it can also be really stressful, there are a number of things you need to do to make this as easy as possible.

At Lively Professional Services, we have put together a list which should help remind you of what you will have to do if you haven’t already done it, this is by no means exhaustive but should be a good starting guide.

What to do before you move into your new house

  • You will need to arrange for carpets, flooring, and curtains if they are not included you should be able to measure these in advance
  • Don’t forget to order your phone line and internet
  • Book your removals 
  • Arranging house and contents insurance and cancel them in your old house
  • Contacting the gas, electricity, and water companies to let them know you are moving
  • Cancelling your tenancy with sufficient notice (if previously renting)
  • Telling your friends and family your new address
  • Redirecting your post to your new address
  • If you can book time off from work to give you time for packing, moving and getting settled in your new home
  • Organise a snagging survey if you are going to use a professional snagger

You will also have to change your address and update your contact information with:

  • Your bank, building society, credit cards and store cards
  • pension provider
  • Inland revenue
  • The DVLA –  driving licence car documents
  • Child benefit
  • School(s)
  • The local council, council tax
  • Dentist / doctors
  • Employer or clients
  • TV licence and Sky, Netflix, Virgin…
  • Insurances – life, car, house, public liability, 
  • Shopping / home delivery such as. Amazon, 
  • Utilities – gas, electricity and water
  • Passport office
  • Mobile phone provider
  • Clubs – such as your gym or golf club
  • Cleaner – house or windows
  • Store cards
  • Other organisations you receive invoices from

Before you get your keys

Your builder should arrange a home demonstration with you to show you around your new home and to explain how everything works. This should be a few days before you get your keys and not on the day of the handover. This is never a good time to have your demonstration as you will have enough to do on the day without cramming in a home demonstration.

My advice is to take your time during your home demonstration and have a good look around and make sure if you see any snags or something you are not happy with, it is documented on the home demonstration form I would also do this again on the day of handover as well.

It is important that the demonstration is not rushed. This is your builder’s opportunity to show you your new home. 

What to check at the home demonstration

  • Make sure the site manager shows you how your heating works. 
  • How your appliances work – check the dishwasher and washing machine if they have water in them that shows they have been tested if not run them during the demonstration.
  • Check the smoke alarms are working.
  • Where the water mains stopcock is located.
  • What to do in an emergency.
  • Drying out process.
  • How to report defects.
  • Ensure you have a copy of the builder’s customer care procedures and your warranty.

Check that the following are in working condition and note down or take a photograph of any defects you see so your builder can rectify them before you move in:

  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Lights
  • Taps
  • Shower doors
  • Kitchen unit doors and drawers
  • Wall tilling/ floor tiling

Ask as many questions as you can and let your builder know if you are going to use a professional snagging company. This sometimes makes them do you snags before you move in. Your new home should have also been cleaned for you before you move in.

Pre – Completion Inspection

If you are given the opportunity to have a pre-completion check carried out, then my advice is to be very careful whilst this sounds a great idea and you can give your builder a snagging list be careful, the inspection is restrictive as it is purely a visual inspection and not a full snagging inspection were you or your professional snagger can use equipment such as a level or thermal camera. 

This then becomes an extra cost to the house buyer and my advice is to wait until you have your keys and your home can be thoroughly checked and professionally snagged which is much better for you.

Things to do on legal completion

Once your solicitors have exchanged monies, you will receive a phone call from the salesperson on-site to collect the keys to your new home.

Once you have been given your keys, the salesperson should:

  • Provide you with all the guarantees and manuals for every appliance. Make sure you register your appliances as soon as possible because your builder will not deal with these once you have moved in.
  • Provide emergency procedure information – this should be provided as part of a handover folder.
  • Take the gas, water, and electricity meter readings, check the serial numbers are the same as on the meters and take a photo of the meter that way you have a record of the meter readings. 
  • Ensure you have all documentation related to ground rent, lease and service charges.
  • This is also a good time to check that any defects that you identified during your home demonstration have been completed, if not agree on a date when your builder expects to have them completed

Try to stay calm and don’t get stressed, which is easier said than done. If you have not had your new home professionally snagged, now is the time. You should get your snagging report completed, at the earliest opportunity after legal completion. 

As you did during the home demonstration check everything again to make sure everything works, and check for any further snags such as scratches, dents, chipped tiles etc, as it will be hard to convince your builder that they have caused them and not you once you have moved in. Write these down and take pictures. If you are not sure or have forgotten how the heating works, or anything else, ask the site manager to explain it again. It is normal to forget these things and he will not mind going over them again.

After you move into your new home

Once you have moved into your new home please read all paperwork, especially the guide to your new home. This will explain essential information on what to expect from your new home during the first few months. Things such as the drying out process, how to care for your new home, maintenance of turf etc.

You might also start to notice some shrinkage and cracks appearing. Don’t panic, this is normal and your site manager should have explained this to you at your demonstration, if you can fit a pound coin into the gap then this needs to be reported to your builder, otherwise, you will need to fill any shrinkage when you come to decorate. 

Don’t forget to start your snagging list as soon as you can! 

If you have any comments or topics you would like me to cover then drop me an email at:  

For more moving and snagging advice, listen to our other podcast episodes.

Check out some of the snags we have found on our YouTube channel.

Find out more about our new build snagging services or get in touch for snagging advice from an expert.

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