To Prepare For Your Move
In many markets across the country right now, houses are selling very quickly. Buyers and sellers will do everything they need to do to get through the transaction, but often forget that there is a lot that must be done to prepare for the actual move. Careful planning can make it a lot easier to settle in to your new home.
Start by making a checklist of everything that you will need to do. If you can, make your list in a document on your computer, so you can insert items as you think of them and keep everything in chronological order. Alternately (or in addition), write everything on a calendar, so things are done when they need to be done. Then of course, there is the method of writing notes on 63 separate pieces of paper and scattering them throughout your house in strategic locations.
As you begin, get estimates of what each of your moving expenses are going to be. Contact competing companies to get an idea of where you can get the best deal. Don't always assume the least expensive is the best deal. If you will be using a moving company, get references to make sure the company will handle your belongings carefully and won't hit you with any hidden charges.
Call ahead to make arrangements for your new location before you get there. Many services will need to be set up before you move in to your new home. Make sure you have made arrangements to transfer over utilities at least two weeks before settlement. If you don't make arrangements far enough in advance, the utilities company may not properly bill the utilities, or they may be shut off as of settlement day.
Check with your employer as to what your work schedule is going to be, and to determine when you will have to time to work on your move, and your home search if necessary.
You can start packing smaller items as soon as you know you are moving. Start organizing files and getting rid of things that you don't need. Have a yard sale to help get rid of things. Throw out old magazines if you won't be reading them any more. Start pulling together boxes and other packing materials. MAKE SURE YOU LABEL EVERYTHING AS YOU PACK. Label both what is in a box and also what room the items in the box will go to. Make sure everything is packed before the movers arrive.
GAS & ELECTRIC - As a seller, make sure the utilities will be switched over to the new owner. Call about two weeks before settlement to find out what you will need to do to end the service. As a buyer, make sure the seller has transferred the gas and electric service. Coordinate the transfer with the sellers. It is generally cheaper to transfer the utilities, than to allow the seller to have utilities shut off.
SCHOOL BOARDS - Contact the school boards in your new community to make arrangements to have your children transferred to the new school or school system. Also contact the old school board to let them know your kids will be transferring out of that system. Do this as soon as you know where you will be moving to. Don't forget to ask for a schedule of when classes will start.
TELEPHONE - Contact the local company at your new address. Expect the local company to ask you who you want to select as long-distance provider, if you are using one (if you don't make a lot of long-distance calls, it can be cheaper to just use a calling card). If you are ordering any additional services, it will probably be less expensive to get them all at the time you are ordering your new service. Don't forget to cancel your old service, effective on the date of your move.
POST OFFICE - At least 10 days before your move, submit a change of address form at your local post office. The Post Office will also give you a helpful moving package. In addition to notifying the Post Office, notify each company that sends you monthly bills or other regular mail you may need. Don't forget your insurance companies (car, life, health, etc.), stock broker or investment advisor.
LOCATE NEW SERVICES - Find a new bank, doctors, dentist, lawyers, accountants, health club.
LOCAL LAWS - Find out if there are laws or neighborhood restrictions in your new location that could affect your move. Will a larger moving truck be allowed on the street? Will you need to make arrangements through any local agency before your move?