New to you French property: 10 things to do when you move into your French home

English speaking French real estate agents

When you move into your new French home there are certain things you should do right away for peace of mind in your new home:

Change the locks

You do not know who has all the previous French property owner’s keys. Maybe an old cousin has one and does not even know the property is sold and he may come by for a surprise visit. Take the time to change the locks and take note of who you give new keys to your French home. Get professional help if needed.

Change the batteries

Replace the batteries in the smoke alarms which are now required by law to be in each French home.

Check the plumbing

Take the time to run the water and properly check all the plumbing in your French home and any other buildings you purchase (garage, swimming pool). You do not want a small leak to become a big leak while you are at the grocery store. Include in your check list the hot water tank. Get professional help if needed and make sure you check even if you have an apartment all the potential leak points.

Check for roof leaks

Do not assume your French property’s roof is water tight. Have a professional check so when the first rain arrives you will not have a disaster on your hands.

Clean out the cabinets

You do not know how clean your closest and cabinets are so to avoid soiling your clothes and food take the time to clean out the cabinets with the appropriate substance all your new storage areas.

Clean deeply the floors

Whether your French property has tiles, wood or by carpet (which is rare) make sure you clean deeply to freshen up your new space.

Clean the vents

Check all the internal and external vents in your French home to make sure they are working. Perhaps you will need a professional for this. By cleaning them out you will make sure air circulates easily in your French property keeping the place fresh.

Clean the heating system

Perhaps you have electric heaters or even a wood chimney in your French home. When you move in take the time to clean whatever type of heating system you have so that when the winter comes you will be ready.

Learn where the hot water tank shut off is

You need to know how to shut off the hot water tank in terms of the electrical and water access just in case a leak arrives.

Confirm the location of the electrical panel and main water shut off

At some point in time in your French property you are going to need to shut off the electricity or water so it is best to know ahead of time.

Bonus: Make sure you have a battery powered hand held lamp just in case of emergency. Leave it in an easy to find place.

Finally take the time to introduce yourself to your new neighbors.