Move Planning Guide
6-8 Weeks Before Moving Day:
Preparation is key to having a stress free move! By planning ahead, you’ll be able to break it up into smaller projects that are easier to accomplish and are less overwhelming.
- Do you plan to keep EVERYTHING that is in your current home?
Moving is a wonderful time to refresh your home’s decor. If you have a substantial number of items you’d like to get rid of, consider a yard or garage sale. Many neighborhoods do group Yard Sales to maximize traffic. If you don’t have many items, have unsold items from your yard sale, or would rather not spend a Saturday schlepping your belongings out in the yard- consider donating to a local or national non profit. Many of them offer pick up services and it is a tax deduction!
- Time to get boxes, tape, and padding supplies!.
If you will be packing yourself, it’s time to get started. But you can’t pack if you don’t have supplies! Often, movers like Stewart Moving & Storage, will provide some complimentary boxes to customers. If you’re not using a professional mover, try a big box hardware store or department store. You can also occasionally find free boxes on Craigslist, Facebook groups, or at yard sales. Be careful to only use good, strong boxes in decent condition – moving boxes aren’t just to help transport your items, but to protect them, too.
- Plan out your new living space. This is a great way to reduce your stress on moving day. First, measure your furniture: couch, chairs, TV stand, bookcases, bed, dressers. Then take a tape measure to your new home and plan out where you will place your main furniture pieces. By measuring the space and large furniture ahead of time, you’ll be able to direct the move teams (or your friends and family) without hesitation, making for a faster, easier moving day.
- Start getting familiar with your new community. Request information on schools, community programs, parks and recreation from the local Chamber of Commerce.
- All travel arrangements (hotel, flights, car rental, etc.) for your family should be made at this time. Try to keep your plan flexible as possible to accommodate any schedule changes or delays.
- If your move is job related, you should keep all receipts for moving related expenses in a designated moving folder. Many moving expenses are tax deductible if related to a new or current job, even if they don’t offer you a relocation package. Obtain an IRS Change of Address form, Form 8822, by calling (800) 829-1040 or click here on IRS. You will be able to download and print form 8822 and most other IRS tax forms; e.g., Form 3903 to help deduct moving expenses.
- Finalize all real estate and rental needs. Make sure you have a copy of the signed lease, and all the related documents you need.
- Contact your insurance agent to transfer medical, property, fire and auto insurance. This can also be done ahead of time- sometimes the auto insurance premiums fluctuate based on your new address and commute to work.
- All medical and dental records should be placed in a safe and accessible place. Be sure to include prescription, vaccination records and eyeglass specifications.
- Plan on taking all important documents, such as wills, stock certificates, and other one of a kind items (jewelry, coin collection, photos etc.).
4-5 Weeks before moving:
Contact the Post Office for the Change of Address form or complete the update online. Give your new address to:
- Friends & Family
- Post Office
- Utility Companies
- Telephone Company
- Trash Company
- Cable Company
- Water Company
- Electricity Company
- Internet Provider
- Insurance Companies
- Banks & Financial Institutions
- Local Government agencies, Federal agencies, the IRS
- Health Providers
- Book Club
- Record Club
- Travel/Auto Club
Organize your move by deciding and making lists of what items you will not transport, what items your moving company will handle, and what items you will move yourself.
Make a decision on who will do most of the packing or all the packing. It is a good idea that you let the moving company do most of the packing. The professional packers know the best methods for keeping items safe; that’s what they do for a living.
Get your kids involved with the moving process. Let your kids do some packing and let them suggest a layout for their new room. Make it fun and exciting for them to move.
3 Weeks before moving:
- Notify your Moving Company if there are any changes in the dates of your move. If you will need any additional services such as piano moving, packing and unpacking, or storage you should inform the moving company for pricing information. Also inform your mover if you add or subtract items from your pre move survey.
- You will need to carry all valuable jewelry with you. If you have any valuables around the house, be sure to collect them before leaving.
- Return any borrowed items such as library books. Also collect all items that are being repaired stored or cleaned (clothing, furs, shoes etc.).
2 Weeks before moving:
- Disassemble and disconnect your computer system before your move. Back up all your computer files to the Cloud or other back up service.
- Make final packing decisions. Clean and clear your home including closets, basement and attics and the items that you will take.
- Dispose of items that represent a hazard and are not allowed to be shipped. Or plan to carry these yourself, in your personal vehicle.
- Tape and seal all cleaning fluids that are non-toxic, non-flammable in plastic bags.
- Drain your lawn mower, snow blower, power tools of all the oil and gasoline to ensure safe transportation.
- Schedule appliance disconnection and preparation with a service provider. If you intend to take your appliances with you- otherwise, they may stay connected to the home.
- If you need to store anything call your mover about storage options available.
- If you haven’t already: inform gas, electric, cable, and telephone services of your move. Arrange to have them disconnected from your present home the day after your scheduled moving day. Sign up for services at your new address and connect them on your moving in day.
1 Week before Moving:
- Make sure to mark which items you’ll take yourself; so the movers won’t take them or have any questions.
- Make sure you haven’t overlooked anything in the house.
- Mark your boxes to be shipped with “Fragile”, “Do Not Load”, “Load Last” stickers.
- Make sure your mover knows the address and phone number your new home. You should also provide a cell phone or emergency phone number and contact, just in case.
- Arrange for payment to your moving company. Find out what methods of payment accepted.
1 Day before Moving:
- Pack a box of things you’ll need as soon as you arrive at your new home. (This might include non-aerosol cleaning supplies, disposable plates and cups, light tools, snacks, bathroom items and trash bags.)
- Take this box with you or have the driver load it last and unload first. This is usually the day packing is done.
- Make sure all packing services have been performed before you sign for them.
- Empty, defrost and clean your refrigerator, freezer and clean your stove, all at least 24 hours before moving to let them air out. Try using baking soda to get rid of any odors.
- Be on hand when the driver arrives and throughout the loading process. (If you won’t be there, make sure someone will be there to direct the movers. Make sure the driver has in writing the name and phone number of that person.)
- Accompany the driver during inventory. Check on the condition of your goods as they are loaded.
- Make a final tour of your home. See that nothing is overlooked.
- Sign the bill of lading and make sure your new address and phone number are correct.
- Lock all windows and doors, and turn off all light switches or breakers.
- GET EXCITED- this is an awesome new adventure and moving will soon be distant memory!