I thought I was so prepared for our move but now that it’s come and gone I can see where things fell apart. What worked: the house was packed in the truck and clean before the new owners arrived. That was my goal so I’m proud of that. But I’m still looking for essential items, such as the phone, so clearly my packing left much to be desired. (In the end, we were just throwing things in boxes willy nilly to get ‘er done so now we’re paying the price.)
Also, we hadn’t arranged for a key to be left with the real estate agents so we and our movers were left standing around on the sidewalk waiting for the key for three hours so we could get into our new house. MOVING TIP: Always try to arrange to have a key left with the seller’s real estate agent so you can get into the home before the deal closes. You should talk to your real estate agent to arrange this. This is what the new buyers of our old home did.
So, now that we’re in the house, we can really start to see what needs work. It’s an old house that needs some updating so it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Right off the top, here’s what we need to address:
Cleaning. This is a big deal and I’m still working on it. Everyone has their own ideas of cleanliness and I am by no means OCD about cleaning but the house was not quite up to snuff so now I’m slowly working my way room by room. The previous owners had a lot of animals, which makes me want to clean above and beyond the normal call of cleaning duty. Once this is done, I will feel much more comfortable about setting up each room.
Lighting. The lighting in all of the main floor rooms is appalling. The dining room only has four pot lights and no central chandelier so the room is dismal and cold. One of the first things we’re going to do is get an electrician in to put in a light receptacle. The living room doesn’t have pot lights but instead has two spotlights to shine on a picture above the fireplace as well as a central light fixture (similar to what’s pictured). However, the spotlights are too bright and the central light fixture isn’t bright enough and hangs down way too far. It’s about two inches above my head. This is also the case in the kitchen.
These are easy fixes and will go a long way to making the rooms feel more welcoming. If you need tips on what kind of lighting is best for certain rooms or areas, check out our "How To" article or visit the American Lighting Association.
Painting. In a previous blog I talked about painting all the wood trim and panelling in the house to brighten it. Some of our HGTV readers suggested we live in the house a while to get used to it and see how we feel. That was good advice so I delayed having our painter come in and now I’m glad I did. The wood is beautiful, one of the house’s best features, and while painting it would make it a lot more bright and modern, there’s something about it I really like. So now I need to find a paint colour that will work with dark natural wood tones. Any thoughts?
Art. I’ve decided to start new with all our art work. We will build slowly with pieces that we truly love and be selective about what we hang on the walls. Instead of hanging a picture above the fireplace I’ve decided to hang a large mirror to add light and space to the room.
What have you done after moving into a new house to make it feel like home?
Reni Walker (AKA Scotch Mommy on slice.ca) shares her moving mayhem on Wednesdays.