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  • Seven to Eight Weeks Before Move
    • Set your move date.
    • Contact moving companies for estimates and information Tip: book well in advance because it can be busy at key times of the year.
    • Make a budget for moving expenses.
    • If your move is business-related, ask your employer which moving expenses they will pay.
    • Begin taking an inventory of each room in your house Decide what to bring and what to sell, donate or throw away.
    • If you are selling items, make arrangements (online, yard sale, etc).
    • If you are donating items, deliver them or arrange for pickup Save receipts for tax records. Find a tax consultant if you need help.
    • Get packing materials like boxes, cartons and labels or investigate packing services.
    • Begin packing as soon as possible.
    • Speak to your insurance agent in case you need to transfer or cancel your insurance coverage (medical, property, fire, auto) Find a new insurance agent if necessary.
    • If you are moving to a foreign country, be sure your documents (passport, visa, inoculations) are up to date.
    • If you’re moving to a new country, research financial and insurance options.
    • Book transportation to your new home.
    • If your children will switch schools, research new schools and contact them for enrollment.
  • Four to Six Weeks Before Move
    • Check with current utility companies (gas, electric, water) to either switch or cancel services If cancelling, check for deposit refund and find new utility companies.
    • Cancel or transfer telephone numbers and services (including mobiles), as well as cable and/or internet connection.
    • Cancel or transfer home services (landscaping, snow removal, etc.)
    • If you’re moving your pet, investigate pet relocation services.
    • Make plans for moving special items like a piano, grandfather clock, plants, etc.
    • When packing, be sure to separate cleaning materials, tools and garbage bags so they are handy on moving day.
    • Think about where you’d like your furniture to go in your new home Create a floor plan.
  • Three Weeks Before Move
    • Collect everything you have loaned out, had repaired, stored or cleaned and return everything you have borrowed.
    • Make hotel reservations if you’ll need them.
    • Gather your important documents (insurance, medical, finance, legal, school records, etc).
    • Get your automobile serviced.
    • If you need to ship your vehicle, find a transportation company.
    • If you are not taking your car with you but are renting, then find a car rental agency at your new destination.
    • If you have newspaper or magazine subscriptions, notify them of your upcoming address change.
    • If you have a pet, check with veterinarian for pet records and immunizations.
    • Have a farewell party.
  • Two Weeks Before Move
    • Find storage options for those items you cannot move immediately and may need to store temporarily.
    • Transfer or close bank accounts.
    • Make sure you have home insurance coverage from the day you move in to your new home.
    • If you drive, find out if you’ll need to convert your driver’s license or get a new one.
    • Make backup copies of important files on your computer before packing everything away Scan paper documents so you have backup electronic versions.
    • As you pack, label boxes with helpful descriptions such as ‘Fragile,’ ‘Load First,’ ‘Load Last’ and ‘Do Not Load.’
    • If you have any hazardous material you aren’t taking with you, dispose of it properly (batteries, computer equipment, paint, chemicals, etc).
    • If you are transporting a lawn mower or power tools, be safe and empty the oil and gasoline.
    • Find a cleaning service to do a final clean of your home.
    • Notify your friends and/or family of your new address and phone number(s).
    • Alert health care providers of your change of address or find new health care services.
    • Consider moving your jewelry and other valuables (wills, stock certificates, etc) to a safe deposit box or other secure location to prevent loss or theft during the move.
    • Arrange to keep important items close to you during the move (passports, documents, jewelry, collectibles, photos, etc).
  • One Week Before Move
    • Separate and label items you will take so that the movers don’t transport them.
    • If you have children or pets, arrange for someone to look after them during the move.
    • Pack a suitcase with the clothes and toiletries you’ll need during the first few days in your new home.
    • Go to the post office to arrange for your post to be forwarded (there is usually a fee for this service).
    • If you have any prescriptions, transfer them to a drugstore or pharmacy in your new town.
    • Alert your realtor and neighbors that the house will be empty.
    • Research your new neighborhood (city council, crime rates, parks and public spaces, transportation, shops, banks, leisure and cultural activities, nightlife, etc).
    • Make arrangements for payment to your moving and/or packing company, either in advance or on moving day.
    • Empty, defrost and clean your fridge and freezer.
  • Moving Day
    • Caution the packers, movers and/or driver about fragile or precious items.
    • Oversee inventory as it is being loaded.
    • Read the Bill of Lading and Inventory carefully before signing and keep them in a safe place.
    • Double check that the driver has the proper delivery address and scheduled delivery date/time.
    • Give driver relevant phone numbers to contact you in case of a problem or change.
    • Do a final check both inside and outside of the house Do not leave your old house until after the movers have gone.
    • Turn off all lights, heating, air conditioning and water Lock all doors and windows. Check security systems, alarms, etc.
  • After The Move
    • Don’t feel stressed to have everything organized immediately Give yourself a few weeks to get settled.
    • Upon moving in, change all locks and get a security/alarm system.
    • Read architecture and design magazines and websites for inspiration on how to personalize your new home.
    • Visit a home show to get decorating ideas for style, design, floor plans, etc.
    • Make sure your new home is environmentally friendly. Go green!
    • If you will remodel your new home, see our ‘Renovate a House’ checklist.
    • Hire an interior decorator.
    • Find painters.
    • Inspect the areas outside your home and remove poisonous plants.
    • Once you are settled in your new home, have a housewarming party!
House moving checklist
  John F. Smith


on December 25, 2011

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