Moving is much more than packing boxes, hiring a mover or renting a truck. Here is a checklist of “must-do” tasks to ensure a smooth move.
At least one week before the move
- File a new address notification with the U.S. Postal Service. Everything will forward to your new address for one year, except magazines and newspapers, which will be forwarded for six months. Then, update your new address with financial accounts and friends and relatives.
- Set closing account dates with current utility companies and open new ones with your next set of providers. On your last day at your old address, take pictures of the water, gas and electric meters to verify your last bill’s accuracy.
- If you’re moving long-distance, notify your healthcare providers and look for new ones in your new locale.
- Choose a new pharmacy at your new location. Before the move, refill any prescriptions in short supply.
- Clean out your refrigerator. Finish off leftovers and make arrangements to give away any food that can’t be properly transported.
- If you have pets, make arrangements for their safe transport, including travel kennels, food, water and bedding. If travel arrangements are lengthy or involve multiple locations, consider a pet relocation service.
- Cancel or transfer any gym memberships. Many chains will transfer your membership to your new locations.
- Arrange for pet sitting and childcare for the day of your move.
- If moving long-distance, secure accommodations and pack luggage for the trip.
- Label electronic cords, cables and remotes and pack them together in a labeled container.
- Place hardware from disassembled furniture in labeled plastic bags.
- Inventory your belongings for the movers and yourself to ensure that everything is accounted for after the move.
Day of the move
- Be sure to have cash on hand to tip your movers.
- Offer cold drinks and snacks to the movers.
- Ask the movers to clearly label boxes by room, which will allow you to prioritize unpacking in your new location.
- Gather house keys, garage door remotes and keypad codes for your home’s new owners.
- When the home is empty, make a video clearly showing each room, as well as the outside, to document its condition.
As soon as possible after the move
- Change the locks or door keypad codes at your new location.
- Inventory your belongings to make sure everything has arrived at your new location.
- Contact movers about any missing or damaged items to start the claims process.
- Review homeowner’s association rules regarding parking, remodeling, outside painting and landscaping changes.
- Write thank you notes to all those who helped you survive your move.