Moving can be a stressful situation, even it’s just across town. If you plan things out and give yourself enough time, you can easily become a moving master. Check out our moving checklist to make your move as smooth as possible.
There are tons of moving companies out there. The most cost effective approach is doing it yourself. If you’re moving locally, check out your nearest home and hardware store. They don’t always do reservations on their vans or trucks, so call them for more information. Another easy way to move yourself AND to get a reservation is to use a company like U-Haul. You can select the day, time, and size of the truck you need to move. If you are moving across the country, do you need to consider a trailer to move your car? U-Haul has them. You can also ship your car(s) if you’d prefer not to tow.
One of my favorite things I’ve realized after two moves in the last three years (one of which was semi cross-country) is that you can also use U-Haul to hire moving help, too. There are nearly a hundred companies to choose from. Reviews and rates are displayed, and you can book them the same time you reserve a truck. Even though I helped unload the truck, (you don’t have to), you can let them do all the heavy lifting at a reasonable rate.
First, visit the USPS website and enter your old and new address into their system. This will ensure that any mail from accounts you forgot to update will be forwarded to your new mailing address. USPS will typically forward mail from your old address to your new address for around six months after requesting the service. It costs around $1 to do it online, but also includes coupons Next, think of all your every account/everyone you’ll need to update. Here are a few examples to help:
- Human Resources department at your employment
- Banks/Credit Unions and credit cards
- Utilities, gas/electric, water, garbage
- Insurances (medical, renters, auto, life, pet, etc.)
- Doctor and any medical billing company you may pay
- Student loans
- You or your child’s school(s)
- Cell phone
- Consider posting an update to your friends on Facebook with your new address
Before you move out of your current residence, think of some of the services that you’ll need to cancel at that address. Make sure they received your new address so that they can send you the final bill and in some cases (like internet, cable, phone), they can move/schedule the start date at your new address.
- Garbage and/or recycling
- Internet, cable, home phone (the sooner you can make an appointment, the sooner you’ll be set up in your new place)
- Renters insurance (Check with your Leasing Agent for more information)
Check your local Craigslist site for moving boxes. In many cases, you can get more than enough needed for your move for free. In some cases, you may have to pay a little, but you can still get a better deal buying them gently used from someone rather than buying directly from a moving company. Consider using more medium to large sized boxes so that they don’t get too heavy that you can’t lift or move them. (And yet another great reason to hire help for your big move!)
I’ve always been extra organized about labeling. I buy bright-colored labels and then color code them for each room. The master bedrooms get the green label, bathrooms get yellow, etc., and then I write what’s in each box. This will help you know exactly where you need to the box to end up on moving day. Packing paper and stretch wrap are also a necessity. Carefully wrap each of your dishes and breakables in packing paper. In some cases, you may want to add bubble wrap or packing peanuts for extra protection.
- Shrink wrap
- Packing tape
- Bubble wrap or packing peanuts
Again, check Craigslist for some of these items. The person giving away the boxes may already have some of these things.
At this point, confirm your moving reservations and all address changes. It’s always good to double check everything is updated and in the books.
Lists are always helpful in any situation, especially during a move! Now that you’ve got the essentials covered, make a checklist of things you need to do or call before moving day. You should also make a list of things you want to buy before you get to your new home. Maybe you can finally buy that grill or new TV that will fit perfectly at your new digs. Research the price and see if it makes sense to buy now or wait until after you move. Make all kinds of lists, plan out what you need in your new space, and plan out what you can sell on your way out, too. Which leads me to my next point:
When you begin packing, you’ll be going through a lot of stuff that, in some cases, you haven’t seen or noticed in years. Set those items aside. Consider selling them on Craigslist or a local community posting. You’ll appreciate the extra cash and reduced amount of clutter. You’d be surprised at what you can sell – give it a try. Always be sure to use caution and check out these helpful tips for selling on Craigslist.
Clean your old place out like your mother taught you. This might help save you from losing a portion of your security deposit. Also, before you start moving stuff into your new place, do the same. Wipe everything nook and cranny down so you know that everything is fresh and clean for you.
Now that you’re all moved in, check out what events your apartment community has planned. It’s great chance to make new friends and enjoy all the amenities your community offers. New city, new life, you got this!