Your Guide to a Successful Move

Eight Weeks Before

  • Remove unnecessary items from your attic, basement, storage shed etc.
  • Use things you can’t move, such as frozen foods and cleaning supplies.
  • Obtain information about your new community.
  • Secure a floor plan of your new residence and decide what household items you want to keep.
  • Start a possessions inventory. Don’t forget your child’s video game system it will only make life harder on you.
  • Solicit estimates from at least three moving companies.
  • Call your homeowners insurance agent to find out to what degree your move is covered.
  • Create a file for documenting all moving papers and receipts.
  • Arrange to transfer your children’s school records.

Six Weeks Before

  • Contact the IRS and/or your CPA for tax-deductible information.
  • Evaluate your possessions inventory. Can you donate anything? Do you need it all?
  • Notify your friends, relatives, professionals, creditors, subscriptions, etc.
  • Subscribe to a local paper in your new community and familiarize yourself with local government, community, and social news and activities.
  • Begin the off-site storage process (if applicable).
  • Locate high-quality health-care professionals and hospitals in your new location.
  • Complete a change of address via post-office cards or an online service for the following:
  • Banks; Charge cards; Religious organizations; Doctors/dentist; Relatives and friends; Income tax bureau/Social Security Administration/union; Insurance broker/lawyer/CPA/ stockbroker; Magazines; Post office; and Schools.
  • Clean your closets.
  • Hold a moving/garage sale or donate items to charities.
  • Choose a mover.
  • Contact your mover to make arrangements and inquire about insurance coverage.
  • If relocating due to a job, contact your employer to see what costs, if any, they will cover.

Four Weeks Before

  • Start packing!
  • Send furniture, drapes and carpets for repair/cleaning as needed. Gather auto licensing and registration documents, medical, dental and school records, birth certificates, wills, deeds, stock and other financial documentation, etc.
  • Contact gas, electric, oil, water, telephone, cable TV, and trash collection companies for service disconnect/connect at your old and new addresses. Also ask for final readings.
  • Request refunds on unused homeowner’s insurance, security deposit with landlord, and prepaid cable service.
  • Notify your gardener, snow removal service, and pool service (if applicable).
  • Contact insurance companies (auto, homeowner’s, medical, and life) to arrange for coverage in your new home.

Three Weeks Before

  • Make your travel plans.
  • Arrange to close current bank accounts and open accounts in your new locale. Notify the heir to your oil fortune (if necessary).
  • Notify your state’s Motor Vehicle Bureau of your new address.
  • Arrange for childcare on moving day.
  • NOTE: For apartment dwellers, reserve the elevator for pickup and/or delivery dates.

Two Weeks Before

  • Arrange special transport for your pets and plants.
  • Service your car for the trip.
  • Contact your moving company and review arrangements for your move.

One Week Before

  • Prepare detailed directions and an itinerary with emergency numbers for your moving company.
  • Settle outstanding bills with local retailers.
  • Pick up dry cleaning, and return library books and rented videotapes.
  • Take pets to the veterinarian and get copies of their records.
  • Drain gas and oil from power equipment.
  • Give away plants not being moved.
  • Cancel newspaper delivery.
  • Buy two-weeks worth of medication and have your prescriptions forwarded to your new pharmacy.
  • Buy traveler’s checks.
  • Make arrangements to pay for your move.

Two-to-Three Days Before

  • If you’re not doing it yourself, have your mover pack.
  • Defrost refrigerators and freezers.
  • Consider gathering all valuables and giving them to family or friends to hold until the move is completed.
  • Disconnect all major appliances.
  • Contact your moving company for any updates.
  • Pack first-night items and a survival kit. Keep them in separate boxes in your car. First Night Items: Sheets, Towels, Toiletries, Phone, Alarm Clock, Change of Clothes, and Flashlight
  • Mover’s Survival Kit: Scissors, utility knife, coffee cups, instant coffee/tea or a coffee maker, water and soft drinks, snacks, paper plates, plastic utensils, paper towels, toilet paper, soap, pencils and paper, local phone book, masking and/or duct tape, trash bags, shelf liner, and aspirin or ibuprofen.

Moving Day

  • Be home to answer any questions your mover may have.
  • Record all utility meter readings (gas, electric, and water).
  • Stay until your movers are finished.
  • Complete information on the bill of lading and carefully read the document and the inventory sheet before signing.
  • Keep your copies of the bill of lading and inventory until your possessions are delivered, the charges are paid, and any claims are settled.
  • Take one final look around to see if you forgot anything.
  • Give movers the directions to your new home, and an emergency number where you can be reached during the move.

At Destination

  • Unpack first-night items and mover’s survival kit.
  • Be at the destination to welcome the movers and be on hand to answer any questions.
  • After the job is completed, pay what is owed. The driver is obligated by law (a Federal requirement for interstate moves) to collect payment upon delivery.
  • Scrutinize the unloading of your items and account for each one on your inventory sheet.
  • Check promptly and carefully for any damaged or missing items.
  • Place moving and other important documents in a safe place.
  • Go to the post office and collect held mail.

 

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