One Month Before Move:
- Obtain an IRS Change of Address form. Call 1-800-829-1040.
- Gather moving supplies, boxes, tape, rope.
- If moving long distance, make any necessary travel arrangements like airline, hotel, and rental car reservations, or, if driving, plan your travel route.
- Call a moving company or make truck rental reservations to move yourself.
- Finalize real estate and apartment rental needs.
- Place legal, medical, and insurance records in a safe and accessible place.
- Inform necessary parties of your new address (using Address Change Notification Cards):
- Friends and family members
- Banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions
- Charge card and credit card companies
- Doctors, dentists, and other service providers
- State and Federal Tax authorities and any other government agencies as needed
- Save moving receipts for your tax returns (many moving expenses are tax deductible)
- Make maps of your new neighborhood to familiarize yourself and your family with your new area
- Plan your moving budget
Two Weeks Before Move:
- Inform gas, electric, water, cable, local telephone and trash removal services of your move.
Sign up for these services at your new address.
- Get new cable service for your new home.
- Inform long distance phone company of your move. Sign up for long distance service at your
- Recruit moving day help.
- Confirm travel reservations.
- Arrange to close or transfer your bank account, if appropriate.
Day Before Move:
- Set aside moving materials like a tape measure, pocket knife, packing boxes, tape and markers.
- Pick up rental truck, if required.
- Check oil and gas in your car, if driving.
- If traveling, make sure you have tickets, charge cards, and other essentials.
Keep the following supplies and accessories on hand:
- Money and credit cards
- Boxes, all sizes
- Bubble wrap or other cushioning material
- Marking pens
- Tape measure
- Furniture pads or old blankets
- Packing tape and scissors
- Label each box with the room in the new home to which it should be delivered.
- Number the boxes and keep a list of what is in each box.
- Clearly mark fragile items.
- Pack a bag of personal items you'll need during the move (change of clothes, toiletries,
medicine, maps, food, and drinks). Keep it in an easy to find place when you pack.
- Keep a medical kit accessible.
- If you have children, pack a bag of games and activities for the trip.
Moving day is over and it is time to start unpacking, you may feel overwhelmed by the bare walls and the stacks of boxes surrounding you. If you start unpacking in an organized manner you can make the transition to your new home less stressful and more rewarding. Use the unpacking tips below, not only you’ll save time but also you’ll make it fun:
1. Clean and Prep Your New Home
It could be very tempting to dive right in and start unloading boxes, but keep in mind the following preparation tips:
• If you are considering painting rooms a different color, or stenciling around an archway, this is the time to do it so you don’t damage any of you belongings.
• It's easier to wipe down shelves, clean windows, and mop under appliances before your belongings are in place.
• Complete any prep work. Line kitchen and bathroom shelves with paper. Consider installing closet systems in bedroom closets, if necessary. Once these jobs are done, you'll be able to unpack more efficiently.
• Plan where to place certain items. Deciding what goes where before unpacking will save you time in the long run.
2. Unpack boxes mark as Essentials First
You should have a few boxes of essentials marked to be unpacked first (as I mentioned before). Go ahead and unpack these boxes right away and distribute these essential items to their respective rooms.
3. Go Room by Room
Though it can feel like an insurmountable task, rest assured: Your house is going to feel like home in no time!
Kitchen: Unpack most-used items first and set it up enough to function. Items that you won't use immediately can be set aside to unpack at a later time.
Baths: In the bathrooms, hang shower curtains, unpack toiletries and put out toilet paper and soap. Resist the urge to unpack right away everything that belongs in the Bathroom.
Bedrooms: If you don't get to the bedrooms on the first night, don't be upset. Drag mattresses and pillows together in one room and have a family camp-out. It will add to the sense of adventure. Unpacking your clothing and bedroom accessories can wait. Allow each bedroom habitant to unpack and arrange his or her personal belongings. Remember that professional movers will reassemble any beds which were dissembled.
Living Room: Unpacking the living room should be a combined effort by everyone in the household. Before you even start draw and sketch of how the furniture will be placed. It's much easier to erase a rectangle that designates a couch and pencil it in somewhere else than it is for 3 or 4 people to lift and move the actual couch around the room. And, it could save you a trip to the chiropractor. Afterwards, there will be a lot of decorations to be placed and electronics to hook up, so make it a family task.
Garage: Avoid making piles of things to organize later. Set up shelves and hooks before you even start unpacking. Having an organized garage is important, place tools, yard supplies and sports equipment at the right place on the first attempt.
4. Play Interior Designer
• Hang shades, blinds or curtains for instant privacy and a homey feel.
• Brighten up a room with self-adhesive wallpaper borders.
• Refinish old cabinets or add new knobs.
• Add potted plants for extra color or to fill empty corners.
• Place family pictures, artwork, mirrors and other decorations to create focal points or to use natural light to your benefit.
• As boxes are unpacked, take an inventory of everything you have to make sure nothing has been lost. If you have any broken or damaged items, make sure to keep them as evidence for insurance claims. Claims usually need to be filed within a set number of days after the move.
• Use a surge protector when setting up a computer or stereo equipment.
• As you unpack boxes, collapse them for storage or recycling.
• Start a log of home repairs and maintenance that needs to be done.
• Create a shopping list to make sure you have everything you need.
Take this as one more great opportunity to evaluate your belongings, specially if you move from out of State, to see whether more items can be discarded or donated to charity.
We have even more resources to help you further with your Moving.
Please use the following tools and links to help you with your relocation:
Salary Calculator Compare the cost of living from one city to another
Community Review Compare neighborhoods that have similar demographics to your current neighborhood
Relocation Wizard Create a timeline for your move. Also includes a Military version for Military Personnel
Moving calculator Get estimates of moving costs from one city to another