No matter how organized you think you are, when you’re moving out of your house, it’s almost always a stressful time. Here are a few tips that can help you prepare.
Two Months Prior to Moving Day:
- If you are using a mover, get a few estimates from moving companies.
- If you are moving yourself, get quotes from at least two truck rental companies.
- Choose a mover (or truck rental company).
- Make an inventory of your household goods and begin to remove clutter (start with basement, attic, garage and other storage areas).
- Start a file for all of your moving paperwork (estimates, receipts, etc).
- Arrange to transfer school records.
- Get your new home ready – contact painters, carpenters, plumbers, roofers, etc., so your home is ready when you arrive. Remember to change the locks on all the doors in your new home.
Six Weeks Prior to Moving Day:
- Obtain and fill out post office change-of-address cards.
- Make arrangements for storage if necessary.
- Ask your doctor or health plan provider for referrals, and obtain all medical records (if moving out of the area).
- Clean all closets and drawers.
- Start using foods and cleaning supplies that can’t be moved.
Four Weeks Prior to Moving Day:
- Schedule disconnection of all utility services at your old home, and connection of them at your new home. Be sure to disconnect the day after you leave and connect the day before you arrive. If you have “last month” deposits with services, such as the telephone company, request your refund.
- If you are moving yourself, reserve a rental truck.
- If you are packing yourself, obtain packing materials and start packing items you won’t need after you arrive at your new house.
- Arrange for cleaning and repair of furniture, drapes and carpeting.
- Check with your insurance company to see how your possessions are covered during transit.
- Collect your important records. Gather personal and family records, including medical and dental, veterinary and school records; legal and financial documents; birth certificates, passports and insurance documents.
Three Weeks Prior to Moving Day:
- Properly dispose of items that cannot be moved, such as flammable liquids.
- Prepare auto registration for transfer (if moving to another state).
- If you are moving in or out of an apartment, arrange for use of the elevator.
- Make child-care arrangements for moving day.
- Hold your moving sale.
Two Weeks Prior to Moving Day:
- Decide what to do with anything that didn’t sell at your moving sale (Dispose? Keep? Donate?
- Return any borrowed items (including library books) and retrieve any loaned items.
- Cancel newspaper delivery.
- Notify creditors of your move.
- Transfer prescriptions and be sure you have an adequate supply of medications on hand (if moving out of the area).
- Assemble a file folder of information to leave for the new owner of your home.
- Change your address. One week before your move, send change-of-address cards to everyone who will need to contact you.
- Pick up laundry. Laundry tickets are easy to misplace, so ask for your things by name and not just by the receipts you have.
- Pack a travel kit: Put aside critical items like a checkbook, credit cards, personal phone book, ID, flashlight, keys, toiletries, tools, paper plates, cups, towels, travel alarm clock, aspirin, bandages and games for the kids. Also, pack a suitcase with clothing and other personal items.
One Day Prior to Moving Day:
- Disconnect and prepare major appliances for the move.
- Set aside anything that will travel in your car so it will not be loaded on the truck.
- Pack a box of items that will be needed first at the new house. Clearly mark this box “Load Last.”
- Obtain cash or traveler’s checks for the trip and to pay the movers.
- Confirm arrival time of your moving van/truck.
- If moving yourself, dismantle beds and other large furniture.
- If using a mover, be sure someone is at the old house to answer questions.
- Note all utility meter readings.
- Read your bill of lading and inventory carefully before signing. Keep this paperwork in a safe place.
- Check your belongings carefully and note on the inventory paperwork any damaged items.
- On an interstate move, be prepared to pay the driver before your possessions are unloaded.
- Supervise unloading and unpacking.
- Be prepared to pay your mover with cash, certified check, or traveler’s checks unless other arrangements have been made in advance.