Moving Home Countdown
Moving home can be quite overwhelming and there is lots to do. Organising as much as possible in advance and having a clear process to follow will help turn some of that stress into excitement. We have pulled together this checklist to help you prepare for the big moving-in day.
2 Months Before
Before anything else, it is important to ensure the safe-keeping of all your moving documents and contact numbers. A folder specifically for storing your agreements and mortgage documentations, utility reference numbers, and any receipts generated from the move will keep everything together in one place. Don’t forget to include a list of contact numbers relevant to the move inside the binder - such as solicitors, the removal company, cleaners and plumbers etc.
You should begin acquiring quotes from removal companies. This may inspire you to think about the layout of your new home and begin drafting up an idea of where you would like everything to go. You could use this as an opportunity to list any items you wish to sell, donate or recycle, and what you may need to buy for the new home. If ordering new carpets or made-to-measure curtains, order these now so that they are ready for fitting as you move in.
6-4 Weeks Before
As the anticipation grows, you could settle any curiosity for your new home area by having an exploration day, or weekend. This is great for familiarising yourself with the local shops, leisure facilities, schools and medical centre locations.
Now is the time to notify your landline, broadband and digital television service providers of your new address. Something to be mindful of is that your current service may not be available in the new property and so you may wish to seek suitable alternative providers.
If requiring temporary storage, book well in advance of moving to ensure availability. Also, booking child care and/or a pet sitter for the moving day will make it easier, safer and reduce any potential stress for the children and animals. If moving with items that require specialist fitting into the new property, such as plumbing and electrical fixtures, book relevant tradespeople to work on the moving day.
4-2 Weeks Before
This is the time to communicate your official change of address. Let your employer, HMRC and your bank or building society know of your new address and moving in date. You will also have to notify any companies you have direct debits or regular payments set up with. Depending on how far you move, you may have to seek out a new dentist and other medical centres.
2 Weeks Before
You should look to settle any local accounts - such as the milkman or the papers.
You should prepare a simple document for those who might be moving into the home that you are leaving. In this, you could include convenient tips for the house such as instructions for the central heating and any left behind appliances, when the different refuse bins are taken, who the neighbours are, what time the local shop shuts and so on. This is a helpful kindness that will be greatly appreciated.
It is time to begin packing, by starting off with the non-essentials such as out of season clothing, extra linen, books and other items you will manage without, over the next 2 weeks.
3 – 1 Days Before
While your new home is still empty, if you can access the property prior to your move in date, have your new home’s carpets and curtains cleaned while the place is still a blank canvas.
If there are any minor paint touch-ups required this is the time to do it. It is best to paint your home in neutral colours in the meantime, then over the coming months you could consider adding in any serious redecoration.
To guarantee that everyone is on the same page when putting boxes into rooms, set up a colour-matching system. In your mind, you know what room is meant to be the study or the spare bedroom, however this may not be entirely clear to the removers or helpers. Go throughout the property and stick a coloured sheet of paper on every room’s door, each different. Then attach the same coloured paper to the corresponding box of items for which it matches. A remover can easily see for example, that a blue box is to go to the blue room.
Don’t forget to defrost the fridge freezer and clean out if leaving behind, or put it on the maximum setting if taking with you. This way the remaining contents should stay at temperature on moving day with the doors left closed, even when switched off. Take final meter readings of the gas and electricity.
It is finally time to finish all packing aside from clean clothes and other items needed for moving. A good idea is to put together a small box of moving day essentials. For ease, include your lunches and snacks, paper plates and cups, as well as a kettle with tea, coffee and a pint of milk, washing up liquid and a couple of dishcloths. Bathroom items such as pain medication, a small first aid kit and toilet tissue will not go amiss.
Handy tools will help with any odd jobs that crop up, such as furniture making – include some screw drivers, Allen keys, a hammer and torches. Bin bags, kitchen roll and antibacterial spray may also be useful. This should be the last box into the moving van and the first box to come out. Pop your moving binder in here too.
Be sure to turn off all appliances and heating, unless moving during cold weather when it may be advisable to leave the boiler and radiators on low, or in the anti-frost mode if possible.
Any smoke and carbon monoxide detectors will need checking to make sure that they are audible. Similarly, this is the best time to learn any intruder alarm systems that may be fitted.
Take gas and electricity meter readings. As a courtesy to whomever may be moving in after you, give your old property a good clean down when empty.
Finally, reward yourself with a meal from your new local takeaway – calories don’t count on moving day!
Do you have any tips or tricks to share for a smooth moving day? Let us know and we might include it into this checklist.