Handyman: Planning will make move to new home smoother

Glenn Haege
Special to The Detroit News

With the inauguration of the 45th president, I started thinking about what needs to be done before moving. No matter what color the house, there are plenty of things you can do before the trucks arrive to help things go smoothly.

De-clutter and get organized: Now is a great time to make sure your new space is more organized and less cluttered. That is especially important if you are an empty-nester who is downsizing. Go through all your items to determine what you use and what you don’t, then donate, sell or throw away the unused or unwanted items.

To make sure you have the proper storage spaces in the new home, you can install an organizing system in the closets from Easy Track, (800) 562-4257,, or EasyClosets, (800) 910-0129, If you aren’t the DIY type, then contact a company that specializes in closet organization like Closets by Design, (248) 499-9774,, Closets Plus, (586) 323-6088,, or California Closets, (248) 624-1234,

If you need shelves for the basement or garage to store things, you can go online to the Shelving Store,, to find a variety of shelving options. There also are products designed specifically to help with garage organization, such as Whirlpool’s Gladiator Garage Works,, or Garage Werks,

Clean, paint and renovate before furniture arrives: Before you move things into your home, take advantage of having a blank slate to update your new space by cleaning, tearing down wallpaper you don’t like or even painting the walls without having to move or cover furniture. If the new home has carpets, get them cleaned by a professional carpet cleaning company like Chet’s Cleaning, (800) 404-0017,, Miracle Carpet Care, (248) 721-6136,, or Modernistic, (800) 609-1000,

Heating system maintenance: If you are moving in the winter, change the furnace filter and pad in the whole house humidifier. It would also be a good idea to get a furnace tune-up from a quality heating and cooling company like Family Heating, Cooling and Electrical, (248) 548-9565,; Flame Heating, Cooling, Plumbing and Electrical, (888) 234-2340,; Hartford and Ratliff, (248) 471-3110,; or Randazzo Heating and Cooling, (888) 884-3322,

You should also have your air ducts cleaned by a NADCA, the National Air Duct Cleaning Association,, certified duct-cleaning company to get rid of any dust and debris that may have accumulated from the previous owners.

Inspect and update safety items: Replace the batteries in the smoke detectors or carbon monoxide detectors to make sure your family is safe if there is a fire or gas leak. You will also want to check the pressure gauge on the home’s fire extinguisher to ensure it is in the “green,” and make sure the safety pin is intact and the nozzle unobstructed.

Change locks and codes: Have the locks changed and change the code on the garage door openers and keypads, as well as the codes to the alarm system if the home has one. You never know if someone else has a key to the front door or the code to the garage door opener, so better to be safe than sorry.

Change your address: One thing that is vital when you move is to notify the U.S. Post Office to have your mail forwarded to your new address. This can be done quickly and easily online at You should also contact your bank, credit cards and other accounts to start getting your mail delivered to your new address directly.

For more home improvement advice, call “The Handyman Show With Glenn Haege” on WJR-AM (760) at (866) ASK GLENN, (866) 275-4536 between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. “The Handyman Show” can also be heard on more than 135 radio stations nationwide.