Safety Factors to Check When You Move Into Your New Home
Moving into a new home is exciting, but it can be stressful, as well, with movers and packing and unpacking and the last thing on your mind is probably new home safety concerns. With so many details to take care of, it can get overwhelming, and it’s easy to overlook some tasks in the rush.
While it’s tempting to just settle in and wing it, your home’s safety is one detail you should never skip. Here’s a list of new home safety concerns that you should prioritize when you move in.
Before All Else
Before moving, before unpacking all your stuff, before all else, it’s important to do a walk through. It’s the best time to do it, while the house is still empty. Any potential safety issues are easier to spot without any furniture and other things hiding them.
Here are some of the things you will want to check on:
Any repairs that you agreed upon with the previous owner. Inspect if they were done properly.
All the things that were included in the sale. If for instance, the washer and dryer were part of the sale, check that they are in place and working.
All things should be in working order. This includes power outlets, light switches, and fixtures.
If you are renting, this is an important step. Be sure to carefully document, in writing and supported with pictures, any issues that you need addressed. Without proof, there are landlords that may charge you for repairs of problems that were already there before you move in.
Unless you are moving into a brand new home with no previous owners, chances are there are going to be some repairs that need to be undertaken. From your home inspection, you can get an idea of what projects you’ll be tackling following your move in. While you do not necessarily need to do them in one go, it’s important to prioritize repairs to keep your home safe.
New Home Safety Concerns - Tackle the Issues From Your Home Inspection
After your initial walk through, you will have an idea on what projects are top priority and what repairs can be put off for later. List unresolved issues in the order you intend to address them. This gives you a clearer picture of what needs to be done so you can set a timetable on when to accomplish them.
For starters, you may want to tick off major ticket items like replacing your HVAC system or installing solid exterior doors for safety. Then later, you can focus on smaller issues as you settle in your new home.
New Home Safety Concerns - Locate the Fuse Box and Water Shut-Off Valve
You do not want to find yourself frantically looking for your circuit breaker or the water shut-off valve during a power outage or when you find your basement flooded with a busted pipe. It’s best to familiarize yourself with their location as soon as you move in.
Test the breaker controls and label them if this has not been done yet. Also test if the shut off valve is working correctly by turning it off and on.
The location of the fuse box and the water shut off valve will normally be indicated in your home inspection report. The fuse box is typically located in the basement, garage, or the storage room. The water shut off valve is normally located around the perimeter of the house.
New Home Safety Concerns - Change Your Locks
For security reasons, it is best to change your locks when you move in. You never know who might have a key. If you are handy, you can change the locks yourself, or you can arrange for a locksmith to do it. We recommend re-keying the locks of all exterior doors as well as those on the windows.
New Home Safety Concerns - Test Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
It’s extremely important to check that your smoke alarms and C02 detectors are working. Test all of the smoke alarms. Check that sensors are dust free and change batteries if needed. Smoke alarms that are over 10 years old should be replaced. If you do not have carbon monoxide detectors, we recommend installing them.
New Home Safety Concerns - Purchase a Fire Extinguisher
Protect your home against fires by buying a fire extinguisher, especially for the kitchen. Almost half of all home fires are caused by cooking equipment.
It’s not only important to have a fire extinguisher in the house, however, it’s also crucial to learn how to use it. While it may seem like all you need to do is point the extinguisher at a fire and pull a trigger, you’ll find that there’s more to it than this. Knowing how to use your fire extinguisher can spell the difference during an emergency.
New Home Safety Concerns - Formulate a Fire Escape Plan
One of the most commonly overlooked home safety concerns is a fire escape plan. Make sure you have one for your new home.
Once a smoke alarm sounds, you have a window of only two minutes to make a safe escape from your home.
It’s important to familiarize yourself with the possible exit doors and windows in your new home. Ensure that there are two planned exits for each room in your home. Check that the doors and windows open properly for easy escape in case of fire. Include an outside meeting place where everyone can converge after exiting the house.
Have a drill to test the soundness of your fire escape plan.
New Home Safety Concerns - Have an Emergency Contact List
You may already have one from your old home. Depending on where you have relocated, you may need to have a new list drawn up. Make it easy to call for help during crises by posting an emergency contact list on the fridge or any place where you can conveniently access it.
The numbers to include:
Work and mobile phone numbers
Local fire and police stations
Neighborhood watch association
Contact numbers of friends, family, or neighbors who can help in case of emergency
New Home Safety Concerns - Get Your Dryer Vents Inspected and Cleaned
A clogged dryer vent is another one of the new home safety concerns often overlooked but should be given priority. Did you know that a clogged dryer vent is a leading cause of fire in the home? Lint and debris buildup in the dryer vent restricts airflow consequently increasing the risk for a fire.
Again, unless it’s a brand new home, you should have the dryer vents in the home you have just moved into checked. The previous owner may not have had it done before vacating the house. In the worst case, it may have never even been done during regular maintenance.
To ensure safety, have your dryer vents inspected by a professional dryer vent cleaning company.
While an inspection may have been done during the home inspection when you were in the process of buying the house, you need a more thorough inspection by a dryer vent expert.
An expert has the proper equipment and training to pinpoint possible hazards in your dryer vent system.
Southern California Dryer Vent Cleaning Can Help
If you have just moved into a new home and would like to ensure the safety of your home, call Southern California Dryer Vent Cleaning today to have your dryer vent inspected and cleaned.
We are a family-owned local business based in Riverside County and we have made it our personal mission to keep homes safe by offering expert and efficient dryer vent cleaning. Our technicians use professional grade equipment that eliminates lint buildup in your dryer vent, no matter what vent layout you have in your new home.
If you’re looking for a reputable, honest, and trustworthy dryer vent company, Southern California Dryer Vent Cleaning is the company to call.
Contact us today: (951) 290-3105
Tags: new home safety concerns, new house safety inspection, moving safety check, safety measures when moving in, how to make sure your new house is safe