Friday, April 18, 2014

Moving Checklists

Moving Checklists:  3 checklists to use at various points in time before your move!

As soon as you know you will be moving:
    • Get Lean and Mean!  Get rid of stuff you don't need.  Donate, sell, trash.
      • Many organizations, such as Salvation Army will actually come to your home to pick up clothes, household items, and small furniture.
      • You can often donate books and other media items to the local library
      • Don't forget to get a receipt for tax purposes. 
    • Research moving companies, truck rentals, etc.
      • BBB has a rating system for many companies, even ones that aren't "BBB accredited" they also show you how the long the company has been in business.  The longer the better!  Companies who have stood the test of time tend to be more reliable.
      • For local moves, you will most likely be charged by the hour, plus mileage, and any fees
      • For long distance moves, you will most likely be charged by weight.  For a long distance move, you will want to get a binding estimate ahead of time.
    • Gather packing supplies (boxes, tape, sharpies, old newspapers or bubble wrap, etc)
    • Make a list of people and organizations you will need to contact with your new address once you move.  Technically, you don't need to make this list right now.  But, it's easier to do it now than 1 week before your move.  Trust me on this one
    • Depending on how far away you are moving, you may want to make a "bucket list" of things you want to do and people you want to visit before you leave your neighborhood.

Things to think about starting 4-6 weeks before your move:
  • Stop buying in bulk (this is not the time to buy 4 months worth of tissues at Costco!)
  • Start using up things that are dangerous or difficult to transport (such as frozen food, bleach, ammonia)
  • Throw out any expired items in your house!  Check your medicine cabinet, bathroom, spice rack, kitchen shelves, etc.
  • Put in notice, as needed to local business you have contracts with  (such as: apartment complex, landscaping company, and health club).
  • Schedule transfer of service with utility companies.
  • Request time off work if needed
  • For a local move, make arrangements for someone to care for your pets during the move.
  • Get up to date on all health and maintenance appointments (doctor visit, dental visits, vet visits, hair cuts, vehicle oil change, etc.).  This step isn't necessary, but it will make life easier in the long run because you will give yourself more time to find new service providers after you move.
  • Gather copies of health records, school records, etc.

The final few weeks and days before moving day:
  • Notify post office and others of your new address.  If you have a long distance move, and won't be able to receive your mail on the first day after you move, you can often request that the post office hold your mail at your new place.
  • Confirm date and time with moving company.
  • Pick up any items you lent out or sent out (dry cleaning, items lent to friends, etc.)
  • Return any items that don't belong to you (library books, rented cable box, etc.)
  • Prep your pets
    • If you have dogs: groom them.  Personally, I like to wash my dogs two days before I take them on a road trip.  They shed like crazy the first day after I wash them.  If I do it two days before, the shedding is back to a normal, but they still smell nice in the car. 
  • Make sure you fill any prescriptions you will need
  • Pay any bills that are due soon
  • Do a move out inspection with your landlord, if you have one, or with new buyers if you are selling  your current home.
  • Make a list of everything that will going in the car with you, and set these items aside
    • items you will need in the first few days
    • important documents
    • valuables
    • pet food, bowls, toys, leashes, liter box
    • tools to reassemble furniture
    • entertainment for the kiddos
  • Set aside cleaning items (such as broom and vacuum) that you want to be packed last so that you can clean up when leaving and moving in
  • Defrost the freezer if you are moving it
  • Stock the fridge with cold beverages for you and your movers.