1. What, When, and Where Decisions
Before you call a moving company . . . decide: What, When, and Where early in your planning.
What's the best way to dispose of items you don't want in your new home? What furnishings will you replace within 2 months? Identify furnishings that won't fit and things your family has outgrown.
Try to arrange your move during the least busy period of the month. A high percentage of moves occur during the last week of the month and in the summer.
2. Who Will Move You?
Before you decide whether to move yourself answer these questions. A professional mover might be the right plan for you.
- Do you have adequate physical strength and endurance?
- Do you have at least two helpers? Is one of those people stronger than you?
- Can you carry everything through doorways and up stairs without damage?
- Will your homeowner’s policy cover potential loss in case of accident en route?
- Will you be able to take adequate time off work or your routine schedule to complete the move on time?
3. Notify Utilities, Media, Businesses, and Others You are Moving
- Natural gas
- Electric power
- Local telephone carrier
- Long distance telephone carrier
- Internet, television, and cable companies
- Stock brokers, mutual fund managers
- Credit cards, banks
- Magazines, book clubs
- Religious organizations
- Country, boat, sports clubs
- Post office – for forwarding bills, mail, and so on
4. Gather and Keep Records, Memorabilia, and Valuables with You
Make plans to move them carefully. Keep these items and documents with you.
- Tax records
- Family records
- Insurance records
- Diplomas / school records
- Medical records / related paperwork
- Photo albums / family genealogies / pictures
- Business / social organizations / other memorabilia
5. Packing for Your Move
Packing is art and science – art in combining just the right items in each box to arrive damage-free, science is making an inventory that enables you to quickly find anything you need upon arriving in your new home.
- Pack heavy items in smaller, heavy-duty cartons.
- When possible combine items that will go together in your new home.
- Clearly mark room destination on top and at least one side of every carton.
- Remember, your mover won't know your bedrooms, so tag bedroom boxes with BR-1 or BR-2 and tape the same tags on appropriate bedroom doors.
Have these items readily available . . .
- Children's health records – schools require proof of immunization
- Keep receipts if you give anything to your church or charities.
- Documents for your lender including previous tax returns, last 2 pay stubs, 6 months of bank statements
6. Helpful Moving Ideas for Your Children
To the younger members of your family moving may be upsetting. Explain why you are moving. Talk openly with them about the move. Give them plenty of time to adjust. If possible, include your children in the process of selecting the new home.
Communicate realistically with all family members when the decision to move is made. Tell your children before and at every stage of the move what (1) will happen, and (2) again when it is occurring. If every family member takes responsibility for an age-appropriate part of the move . . . yours can be an easy move.
When children feel included in the decision-making process, and ‘take ownership’ of their new home, their transition will be easier.
- Negotiate what goes and what stays.
- Don't throw away personal items behind a child's back.
- Don't try to get rid of children's favorite items at this time even though it may make moving simpler.
- Show your children pictures of your new home, school, and items of their person interest in the area.
- Ask the new coach, scout leader, teacher, or church youth leader to call and talk with your children.
- Don't forget grandparents, cousins, and your extended family, close friends of adults and children. Share the excitement and responsibilities.
7. Don't Forget! Pets, Plants, and Perishables
Moving is tough on pets.
- Have pets groomed on moving day so they are away from all the moving activities. Make plans early for their transit to your new home.
- If your pets have medicine or physical needs, keep these items readily available.
- If your pets are traveling with you, have a portable water container so they can drink often.
- Have a snack readily available.
- Keep leashes and carrying containers handy.
If you plan on leaving plants behind give them to friends, your church, or a local charity. If you are driving to your new location in another state, find out what plants you can take across state lines.
Four weeks before moving, begin the process of reducing your freezer's contents to avoid throwing away large quantities of food. Where possible, give food you won’t be taking to your friends, church, or local food bank.