They say that moving house is one of the most stressful situations you face in a lifetime, along with starting a new job and having children. With a home full of furniture to sort, paperwork to shuffle through and mountains of packing materials - moving house can get very haphazard, very quickly.
Having a moving checklist ensures that you pack what you need, in the right order. Having met and helped plenty of home-movers over the years, we’ve developed an easy to follow checklist for moving home - so you can focus on the important stuff… like remembering to bring the dog!
(Don’t worry, if you’re falling a bit behind or you’ve come to this article late, follow this link to our condensed moving checklist, which covers the 4-weeks countdown to moving day!)
1) Start making lists of the ‘life-admin’ you need to sort before you move. This might be updating your address on your driving license, getting registration forms for your new doctor's surgery and transferring your children’s school records.
2) Contact your utility providers and let them know that you’re moving home. See if they can transfer your contract to your new home, or start looking into the best providers for your new area.
3) Take note of what’s in the freezer - you’ve got 2 months to eat it or give it away!
4) Time to call the movers! Do some research online and ask around for recommendations. It’s best to get your removals team booked in as soon as possible - they tend to be booked up for weeks at a time. Plus, this gives you plenty of time to find a great quote.
5) Get your packing materials. Once the boxes are in the house, it’ll start to feel real and you’ll get the urge to start ticking things off your moving home checklist.
6) Take stock of what’s in the loft. People often forget about the loft, until the last minute! Think about how you’ll store and move these belongings, or even if you need them anymore. Now is a great time to clear out the loft or put bulky items in personal storage.
7) Now is not the time to be buying anything new. Where possible, change your shipping address to your new home to prevent future mishaps.
8) Send out ‘We’re moving’ cards to your friends and family, with the new address and move-in date.
9) Create a home inventory, alongside your moving checklist. Think of it like a check-in and check-out at a hotel. You’ll know if anything has gone missing and will able to search for the item before you lose access to your old home.
10) Seasonal items can be packed. If it’s summer, package up those Christmas decorations. Moving in the winter? You probably won’t need the paddling pool anytime soon.
11) It’s time to KonMari the place! Work through your home and put aside the things you no longer need. Hold a yard sale, head to a car-boot or give unneeded belongings to charity.
12) Start cleaning. As you gradually eat the food up, sort the clutter and pack rarely used items, you’ll reveal some hidden grime. Clean up those dusty corners as you go along to save having to conduct a mass clean on moving day.
13) Start cancelling subscription services and recycling magazines from around the house. Removal services are costly, so you don’t want to waste space on disposable items.
14) Time to ask for a couple of days off work for moving day! If you have children, organise child care or family members to watch them. Book the cat/dog into a kennel for a couple of days to avoid the potential stress/trip hazard.
15) Consult your moving house checklist and take photos of all your furniture and walls. This allows you to check and confirm that there is no damage before or after the move.
16) Time to get serious! Any items that can go into storage for a while - get them gone! Start packing up all the items you can survive without i.e ornaments, special crockery, spare toiletries, electronics etc.
17) Pack up the shed. Give the garden a quick spruce, clean off your machinery and pack it up. For large items, such as lawn mowers or chippers, send them to storage to keep them safe without taking up room in the removals truck.
18) Request your postal redirection. On your checklist for moving home, you’ll have a few places to finally make the address change. Letting the post office know is the final step!
19) Arrange to transfer your home insurance so you’re covered from the day you move.
20) Put all of your important paperwork into one file and keep it handy. This should include the removals paperwork, your moving house checklist, home inventory, family passports and other identification documents.
21) Invite your friends and family over for a mix and match dinner party. Cook up everything you have left in the freezer and send everyone home with the leftovers.
22) Pack a week’s worth of clothes into a bag and put the rest in boxes. Don’t seal these boxes yet, just in case.
23) Double check your reservation with the removal company.
24) Dust and hoover the entire house. Give furniture a wipe before taking it apart and vacuum out drawers, wardrobes and cupboards.
25) Cancel any remaining bills: milkman, newspaper delivery, window cleaners, gardeners etc.
26) If you’re feeling confident, host a ‘shoes-off’ leaving party! Grab some recyclable cups and a few glasses of bubbly to send off the old house and hand out your new address cards.
27) Don’t panic!! Make sure you have a ‘moving day survival kit’: tea, coffee, sugar, biscuits, fruit, spare tape, soap, toilet roll and, of course, the kettle!
28) Pack everything up, bar the survival kit; moving checklist, phone chargers and valuables etc. Lock valuables in your personal vehicle before the removal team arrives.
29) Ensure that the freezer is defrosted and wiped out. Keep a few old tea towels to hand, just in case of spillages throughout the day.
30) Leave a house warming card, a bottle of wine and your new address. Fingers crossed, they’ll forward any forgotten mail!
31) Take a snap and say sayonara to your old home!
And there you have it! You’ve made it through the move! Of course, the first week or two will be a little disjointed, but if you’ve followed your moving checklist, it should be plain sailing.