Moving to a new house can be a stressful time for anyone. The process of packing up and moving your life from one property to another is often chaotic and it’s easy for important things to slip off the to-do list. To make your move as stress-free as possible, follow our handy checklist and don’t let anything fall through the gaps.
Notifying the right people
There are a number of people who need to know about your planned move. Make sure you’ve notified the following:
- Friends and family.
- The post office – they’ll be able to redirect any post sent to your old address.
- Government bodies such as HMRC, the DVLA, the electoral roll and TV licensing.
- Any financial service providers like your bank, credit card companies and pension provider.
- All insurance providers.
- Gas, electricity and water suppliers.
- Broadband and mobile phone providers.
- Your regular doctor and dentist surgeries.
- Your work and your children’s school or college.
- Any other subscription services, like magazine deliveries, gym membership and any pet microchip databases.
The earlier you can get packing, the better. Work out a logical system to make packing and unpacking a walk in the park. You can always ask your estate agent for recommendations on removals firms, as well as cleaners, storage facilities or any other services you may need – as local experts they are likely to know trusted people that they can confidently recommend.
- Keep important documents and papers together. This includes passports, house deeds, wills, insurance papers and cash.
- Inventory your belongings room-by-room, making a note of any existing damage.
- Pack room-by-room and label boxes as you go.
- Avoid wrapping items in newspaper – it can smudge!
- Get a few quotes for removal companies.
- Have an idea of the floor plan in your new home to help you settle in quicker.
- Make sure you have storage facilities in mind as a backup in case your move is delayed.
- Pack any essential items in their own box so that they’re easy to find as soon as you move.
- Wrap up sharp knives separately or store them in a knife-block if you have one.
- Pack smaller objects in large pots and pans.
- Wrap up glass in tissue paper taking special care of the stems of glasses.
- Don’t stack plates and crockery flat.
- Invest in special bottle boxes to ensure no spillages.
- Where you can, use the original boxes for smaller appliances.
- Clean the oven and defrost the fridge and freezer.
- Make sure any large appliances are removed and packed by a professional.
- Pack small, fragile items in between soft duvets and pillows.
- Wardrobe boxes are great for transporting any clothes you normally store on a hanger.
- Use book boxes for books – they get heavy fast!
- Set aside any valuables, like jewellery. It can be a good idea to keep these with your important documents.
- Pack any houseplants in tall boxes to protect them.
- Wrap furniture in plastic or bubble wrap to prevent dust and damage.
- If possible, take furniture apart to make it easier to move.
- Tap an ‘X’ shape onto mirrors to prevent damage.
- Wrap fragile crockery and silverware individually to prevent breakage and tarnishing.
- Mark boxes as ‘Fragile’ and pack these at the end.
Garden and Garage
- Clean bikes and cover pedals and chains to prevent damage to other objects.
- Beware of blades when moving mowers and garden tools.
- Drain hose before packing away.
The final arrangements
Once you’re all packed and ready to go, it’s time to confirm arrangements to make sure everything runs smoothly on the day.
- Confirm bookings with the removal company and any storage facilities.
- Arrange for any necessary child and pet care for the day of the move.
- Make arrangements for cleaners and any service professionals to make sure the old house is in the best condition.
- Know what your removal company can and can’t take. Dispose of any dangerous or flammable liquids safely.
- Gather together all of the keys for the current property making sure you know what each one is for. Provide keys to your agent if they don’t already hold them.
- Provide your agent with any relevant information about your home, such as alarm codes, garden details or any idiosyncrasies about the house that will need to be passed on to your buyer.
- Do a final check of your home, making sure you haven’t forgotten to pack anything.
- Record all relevant utility readings on the day you move and let the service providers know.
- Make sure your removal company have an emergency contact number and directions to your new house.
Once the stress of moving out has ended, it’s time to reverse the process and settle in to your new home.
- Put the kettle on!
- Communicate with your removals team, making sure boxes and heavy furniture are put in the right place.
- Account for everything on your inventory and make sure nothing’s been broken during transit.
- Put any documents in a safe, easy to find place.
- Take pictures of the meter readings in your new home. You’ll need these to set up your accounts with service providers.
- Check that all the keys to your new home work.
- Have a look for any items the previous owners may have left behind and place anything you find in a safe place to send to them later.
- Have a quick clean to clear any dust and then make your bed.
- Plug in your appliances.
- Ensure you know how to use the boiler and shower.
- If you’ve moved to a different area, make a note of any emergency contacts you might need, like the doctor or vet.