Get Rid of Clutter: As much as you’d like to keep everything, moving is the perfect time to get rid of stuff that you really don’t need. The more you can get rid of, the less you have to move, and the less you have to worry about.
Do The Homework: Read reviews, get estimates, check into companies’ credentials … the more information you have about the moving company you hire, the better the move will go.
Get Organized: Nobody remembers everything. Make a detailed list of everything that needs to be done to complete the move. Also, get all important records and documentation and store them in one place. This way, you know exactly where they are when you need them.
Six Weeks Before You Move, You Should…
Get Your Supplies: Boxes, Tape, Bubble Wrap, Markers, Specialty Containers … get your supplies ordered and organized to help the packing process go smoothly.
Use Things Up: Food, Cleaning Supplies, and other things can clutter up the move. Use them up as much as possible to reduce the amount of stuff you need to move and/or throw away.
Take All Necessary Measurements: Measure all large objects and doorways so you know how much room you have to work with and can plan any alternative arrangements if needed.
One Month Before You Move, You Should…
Select a Moving Company and Get Confirmation in Writing: Confirm dates, times, costs, and other details in writing for your protection.
Begin Packing: Start with infrequently used items, taking note of any special items that may require insurance.
Label: Clearly label all boxes and containers so you know where everything is and can organize things accordingly.
Separate the Valuables: Valuables and important files should be kept in a safe box for added protection. Your mover’s estimate should also be kept here for safekeeping and easy accessibility.
Change of Address: Fill out a change of address form or do it online at usps.gov. Have a trusted neighbor or friend watch for any mail after you have moved, checking in every couple of weeks.
Notify Important Parties: You should change your address with the following: your banks, credit cards, utility companies, your employer, magazines and newspapers, cable or satellite company, and any other companies you do business with, including online shopping sites. In most cases, you can change your address online.
Medical Records: Either forward your records to a new healthcare provider, or obtain copies for yourself.
Two Weeks Before You Move, You Should…
Arrange for Time Off: Make sure your employer knows you are moving and that you have the time off.
Check the Car: The last thing you need is your car breaking down on the road. Make sure all the routine maintenance is up-to-date so you have reliable transportation.
Empty the Safe Deposit Box: If you are moving to a completely new town, make sure that everything is removed from your safe deposit box.
Contact the Moving Company: Confirm and reconfirm your moving arrangements.
One Week Before You Move, You Should…
Get Your Meds: Refill prescriptions and make sure you have all the meds you need as you settle in.
Pack Suitcases: You should have everything except general packing done a few days before your moving date. Also, pack suitcases for everyone in the family with a few days’ worth of clothes for easy access.
A Few Days Before You Move, You Should…
Defrost the Freezer: If your refrigerator is making the move, get it emptied out, cleaned, and defrosted at least 24 hours before you move.
Double-Check Every Detail: Call the moving company and reconfirm EVERYTHING, from the arrival time to directions and all contact information.
Make Sure Payment is Arranged: If you haven’t already arranged payment via credit card, get a money order or cashier’s check for payment, with cash to tip the movers. 10 to 15% is a good tip, though you should consider any especially difficult aspects of the move when determining the tip. It’s also important to have refreshments available for the hard-working movers. Water is crucial for moves during hot weather months. On Moving Day, You Should…
Verify: When the moving truck shows up, confirm that it is from the company you hired by matching the USDOT number on the side of the truck with the number on the written estimate you were given. Unfortunately, there are criminals out there who will try to scam you out of your belongings.
Take Inventory: Before the movers take the truck, inspect and sign the bill of lading, and keep a copy for yourself.