Stress-Free Moving: The Ultimate Moving Checklist
| By :
T. Scott Clendaniel
This article details the best of the moving checklists online or in print:
== 4 Weeks Prior to Move: Organizing ==
- Set the date.
Arrange for utility transfers. This includes:
__ Cable/satellite television
__ Cell phone service
__ Local phone service
__ Long distance phone service
__ Recycling pick-up
__ Security system
__ Trash pick-up
NOTE: It’s a good idea to schedule utility “turn on dates” at least one day prior to the move date and “turn off dates” at least one day after the move to allow for emergencies or issues that may arise.
- File change of address.
- Make sure you have enough cash on hand to pay movers in full.
- Start a “change of address log” of all the people you need to notify. Be sure to include:
__ Accountant/tax preparer
__ Alumni associations
__ Babysitter/ child care provider
__ Banks (auto loans, checking accounts, credit cards, home equity, IRA’s, mortgage, safe deposit box, savings account)
__ Business cards (order new ones)
__ Cell phone provider
__ Child care/ daycare
__ Courts, especially for traffic tickets or local disputes
__ Credit bureaus
__ Credit card issuers
__ Department of Motor Vehicles
__ Diaper service
__ Dry cleaning pick-up and delivery
__ Family members
__ Health clubs
__ House cleaning service
__ House of worship
__ Insurance providers (auto, health, life, other vehicles)
__ IRS (form 8822)
__ Lawn care
__ Luggage tags (replace existing ones)
__ Magazine subscriptions
__ New business cards
__ New employer
__ Newspaper subscriptions
__ Old employer
__ Parent-teacher association
__ Pet sitter/ dog walker/ pet day care
__ Pharmacy (BONUS: get year-to-date expense summary for taxes)
__ Physical therapist
__ Physician (BONUS: get referral for new location)
__ Post office
__ Professional organizations
__ Retirement plan holders
__ Return address labels (order new ones)
__ Schools (BONUS: get copies of transcripts)
__ Snow removal service
__ Social Security Administration
__ Swimming pool maintenance (pool cleaning, pool opening or closing)
__ Swimming pool memberships
__ Veterinarian BONUS get vet records and recommendations
__ Water delivery service
== 4 Weeks Prior to Move: Resources and Packing ==
- Hire movers or reserve the truck.
- Recruit family and friends to help on the move.
- Get the essential moving supplies.
At minimum, you will need:
__ Markers to label boxes (preferably wide tip, dark color)
__ Moving boxes
__ Newsprint, packing peanuts or other cushioning material
__ Packing tape
__ Scissors or utility knife
- Make a moving organizer.
You can make a moving organizer for all your important notes, receipts, and important information by getting:
__ Binder, 3-ring, at least ˝” wide
__ Pocket dividers to separate sections and hold important receipts
__ Paper for keeping all your notes (3-holed graph paper is ideal for this).
- Start packing!
- Start separating cherished items from the non-essential.
== 2 Weeks Prior To Moving ==
- Make arrangements to return items.
Here are some critical items to return prior to moving:
__ Cable/ satellite receiver boxes, remote controls, dishes
__ Cable/DSL modems
__ Carpet shampooer
__ Clothing (borrowed)
__ DVD and video game rentals
__ Library books (neighborhood and school)
__ Tools (borrowed or rented)
__ Trash cans/ recycle bins
__ Unwanted purchases
- Make arrangements to retrieve items.
Be sure to retrieve any of the following items:
__ Clothing at dry cleaners, tailors or in storage
__ Clothing lent to friends
__ Items at repair shops
__ Tools lent to neighbors or friends
- Open bank accounts near your new address.
- Create one “Open Me First” box for each room.
You’ll need to access certain packed items almost immediately after you arrive, and they need to be packed together in special boxes (one per room) and marked with either bright red markers or special stickers so you can spot them easily. The specific rooms are:
__ aluminum foil
__ break-proof or disposable flatware, cups, and plates
__ coffee maker (don’t forget the filters!)
__ dish detergent
__ frying pan and spatula
__ pet food and bowels
__ tea kettle
__ bath mat
__ bath towels
__ first-aid kit (aspirin, band-aids, hydrogen peroxide)
__ hair dryer
__ shower curtain and rings
__ toothbrushes and toothpaste
Tool room or drawer:
__ duct tape
__ flat-head screwdriver
__ Phillips-head screwdriver
__ picture hangers
__ tape measure
__ utility knife
- Finish off packing for “non-living” rooms.
- Start eating up perishable food from freezer and refrigerator.
- Consider holding a “Packing Party.”
Hold a yard sale.
== 1 Week Prior to Moving Day ==
- Confirm start time, current home address and future home address with movers.
Recruit friends for “moving day madness.”
- Make arrangements for child and/or pet sitting.
== 1 Day Prior to Moving Day ==
- Make sure everyone’s cell phone is fully charged.
Have everyone pack one or two suitcases or a knapsack (no more).
Even if you’re only moving across the street, having a suitcase with the following, taken with you instead of on the moving truck if possible, will make things easier once you move in:
__ Favorite toy for the kids
__ Something to read
__ Three days’ worth of changes of clothes
__ Toothbrush and toothpaste (if not in “Open Me First” box)
== Moving Day ==
- Start early.
- Take all garbage out of the house.
- Make sure drivers have your cell phone number and you have theirs, along with their names.
- Be available for movers’ questions.
- Perform final checks before leaving current home.
Here are some final items to verify before shutting the door for the last time:
- Air conditioning, fans, and heat turned off?
- Water shut off, including to hoses?
- Light switches turned off?
- Keys and garage door openers for current home turned in or left on the kitchen counter?
- Anything left in refrigerator, freezer, stove, drawer under stove, in closets, in bathroom, under porch, in garage, in attic, in crawlway?
- Did you pack your hoses and sprinklers?