A new home is an exciting time for everyone. The seller. The buyer (you). The neighbors who curtain twitch and wonder who their new neighborhood frenemies will be. Even the removals team stand to make a pretty penny and go home happy. There’s absolutely no downside to moving into a new home. Except, well, that’s a lie, and today we’re going to sort it out.

If you have recently moved into a new property and taken issue with just about every aspect of your living conditions, don’t worry, you are not alone. From needing clean refrigerator coils to replacing the toilet flush handle for one that doesn’t scrape the wall – we’ve all been there! Let’s look at some home improvement tips.

Terrible lighting

A home typically comes with no frills. In places where frills are necessary, like with lighting (because you couldn’t reasonably expect to move into a property with no lighting fixtures and no light bulbs), the seller or vendor is likely to do a quick and cheap job.

Lighting can cost you a fortune. But it doesn’t have to. Switch the free bulbs that came with your new abode for LED light bulbs at the earliest opportunity. They cost pennies to run and they last longer than you are likely to live in the property (25+ years in some cases).

If your lighting fixtures look like the cheapest nastiest fixtures available from a back alley hardware store, and if your bulbs look like anything less than LED is powering them, make the smart decision to rip it all out and start again.

Seal those floors

You know what has to be listed in the description when selling a house? The type of flooring. You know what doesn’t have to be listed? When that floor was last maintained.

Wooden floors that haven’t been treated in a long time are a nuisance waiting to ruin your day. Wood is a two-way street. It lasts longer than carpets and rugs and requires less day to day upkeep. But when it needs maintenance, it can be costly and time-consuming.

The danger is that untreated wood will begin to chip. And warp. And bend. And before you know it, the splendid and level wooden floors you thought you had purchased as part of your home will soon start to look like the cutting room floor in a woodwork shop. OK, perhaps that’s an exaggeration. But only just.

How many unknown keys are there to the locks that came with the house?

In the final episode of the TV series Friends, two of the main characters are about to vacate their apartment for the last time when they remember they have to leave their keys on the side on their way out. The other four main characters also put their hands in their pockets and, unexpectedly, each pulls out a key. It’s funny, because we all give spare keys to friends and family at different times, and sometimes we forget.

The lesson to be learned? Replace your locks. Who knows who has keys to old locks.