Buying & Moving Guide

As you get closer to your moving date, use our guide below to help ensure the move into your new home goes smoothly.

Eight weeks before you move

  • Contact your mover to make moving day arrangements.
  • Remove items from your attic, basement, storage shed, etc.
  • Start to use up things you can’t move, like frozen foods and cleaning supplies.
  • Contact the chamber of commerce or visitor’s and tourism bureaus in your new community for information on your new city.

Six weeks before

  • If you’re moving at an employer’s request, verify what expenses and responsibilities are theirs and which are yours.
  • Contact the IRS and/or your accountant for information on what moving expensesmay be tax-deductible.
  • Evaluate and inventory your possessions. Can you sell or donate some to charities? Are there some you haven’t used in the last year?
  • Make a list of everyone you need to notify about your move: friends, professionals, creditors, subscriptions, etc.
  • Obtain a mail subscription to the local paper in your new community to familiarize yourself with local government, community, and social news and activities.
  • Locate all motor vehicle registration and licensing documents.
  • If some of your goods are to be stored, make the necessary arrangements now. (Your moving counselor should be able to help.)
  • Contact schools, doctors, dentists, lawyers and accountants and obtain copies of your personal records. Ask for referrals where possible.

Four weeks before

  • Obtain a Change of Address form from the post office and begin filling out cards.
  • Arrange special transportation for your pets and plants.
  • Contact utility and related companies (gas, electric, oil, water, telephone, cable TV, and trash collection) for service disconnect/connect at your old and new addresses. However, remember to keep phone and utilities connected at your current home throughout moving day.
  • Contact insurance companies (auto, homeowner’s or renter’s, medical, and life) to arrange for coverage in your new home.
  • If you’re packing yourself, purchase packing boxes from your local mover. Pack items that you won’t be needing in the next month.
  • Plan a garage sale to sell unneeded items or arrange to donate them to charity.

Three weeks before

  • Make travel arrangements and reservations for your moving trip. However, don’t make plane reservations for the same day that you’re moving out. House closings are often delayed, and other unexpected situations often arise.
  • Collect important papers (insurance, will, deeds, stock, etc.).
  • Arrange to close accounts at your local bank and open accounts in your new locale.

Two weeks before

  • Have your car checked and serviced for the trip. Also, make sure that your automobile is prepared (filled with the necessary antifreeze/coolant, for example) for the type of weather conditions you’ll be traveling in.
  • If you’re moving out of or into a building with elevators, contact the building management to schedule use of the elevators.
  • Contact your moving counselor to review and confirm all arrangements for your move.

One week before

  • Settle any outstanding bills with local merchants.
  • Don’t forget to withdraw the contents of your safety deposit box, pick up any dry cleaning, return library books and rented videotapes, etc.
  • Take pets to the veterinarian for any needed immunizations. Get copies of pets’ veterinary records
  • Drain gas and oil from power equipment (lawn mowers, snow blowers, etc.).
  • Give away plants not being moved.
  • Prepare specific directions to your new home for your moving company. (Include your itinerary, emergency numbers, etc.)

Two to Three days before

  • Defrost your freezer and refrigerator. Block doors open so they can’t accidentally close on pets or children.
  • Have your major appliances disconnected and prepared for the move. (Again, your moving counselor can help with arrangements for a third party to provide these services.)
  • Pack a box of personal items that will be needed immediately at your new home. Have this box loaded last or carry it with you in your car.
  • Organize and set aside those things that you’re taking with you so that they don’t get loaded on the van in error.
  • Contact your moving counselor to confirm arrival time of the moving van, as well as to notify him/her of any last minute details.

Moving day

  • Make sure that someone is at home to answer the van foreman’s questions.
  • Record all utility meter readings (gas, electric, water).
  • Read your bill of lading and inventory carefully before you sign them. Keep these and all related papers in a safe location until all charges have been paid and all claims, if any, have been settled
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