- Two months prior to Moving Day – Get estimates from moving companies if you will use a mover. Get costs from at least two truck rental companies if you will move yourself. Create a floor plan of your new home for furniture and appliance placement. Make an inventory of your household goods and begin to remove clutter (start with the basement, attic, garage, and other storage areas). Start a file for all your moving paperwork (estimates, receipts, etc.). Arrange to transfer school records. Choose a mover (or truck rental company).
- Six weeks prior to Moving Day – Obtain and fill out post office change-of-address cards. Subscribe to the paper in your new hometown to learn more about your new community Make arrangements for storage if necessary. Ask your doctor or health plan for referrals and obtain all medical records. Have antiques, pieces of art, and other valuables appraised. Clean all closets and drawers. Start using foods and cleaning supplies that cannot be moved.
- Four weeks prior to Moving Day – Contact all utilities for service disconnection at your old home and connection at your new home. Be sure disconnect is the day after you leave and connection is the day before you arrive. If you are moving yourself, reserve a rental truck. If you are packing yourself, obtain packing materials and start packing items you won’t need until after you arrive at the new house. Arrange for cleaning and repair of furniture, drapes, and carpeting. Arrange for special transportation of your pets and plants if necessary. Check with your insurance company to see how your possessions are covered during transit. Make any travel plans necessary for your move. Check to see if you need any moving permits. Plan your moving sale.
- Three weeks prior to Moving Day – Dispose of items that cannot be moved, such as inflammable liquids. Prepare auto registration for transfer (if moving to another state). If you are moving in or out of an apartment, arrange for use of the elevator. Make child-care arrangements for moving day. Hold your moving sale.
- Two weeks prior to Moving Day – Arrange for disposal of anything not sold at your moving sale. Service your car in preparation for the move. Return any borrowed items (including library books) and retrieve any loaned items. Cancel newspaper delivery. Notify any creditors of your move. Transfer prescriptions and be sure you have an adequate supply of medications on hand. Assemble a file folder of information to leave for the new owner of your home.
- Two to Three Days Prior to Moving Day – Drain your waterbed. Defrost refrigerator and freezer, propping doors open. Let movers pack your belongings (unless it’s a do-it-yourself move). Disconnect and prepare major appliances for move. Set aside anything that will travel in your car so it will not be loaded on the truck. Pack a box of items that will be needed first at the new house. Clearly mark this box “Load Last.” Obtain cash or traveler’s checks for the trip and pay the movers. Confirm arrival time of your moving van. If moving yourself, dismantle beds and other large furniture.
- One day prior to Moving Day – Transfer your bank accounts. Take animals to vet for immunization if necessary. Close your safe-deposit box. Settle any bills with local businesses. Drain power equipment of oil and gas. Drain water hoses. Find new homes for plants that will not be moved. Confirm any travel reservations.
- Moving Day – If using a mover, be sure someone is at the old house to answer questions. Note all utility meter readings. Read your bill of lading and inventory carefully before signing. Keep this paperwork in a safe place.
- Delivery Day – Again, be on hand to answer any questions. Check your belongings carefully and note on the inventory any damaged items. On an interstate move, be prepared to pay the driver before your possessions are unloaded. Supervise unloading and unpacking. Be prepared to pay your mover with cash, certified check, or traveler’s checks unless other arrangements have been made in advance.