Moving is a big job. The first thing you should do is purge everything that you haven’t used in a year, or things that will not fit in your new home. Donate to a charity or sell what you can on Kijiji. You do not want to pay to move things you will get rid of later.
Make a List
Write down everything! You’ll be glad you did. Before you start packing, have a pen and plenty of paper on hand to keep track of where things are going. If you have a computer, you could even print a list of numbers with space next to each to note the contents of each box. You may even prefer a notebook! Put the corresponding number on each box and list the contents on your sheet. Remember to always keep your list in a handy place along with labels, pens, tape and any other supplies you may need to keep the packing and moving process going smoothly. When describing the box contents – be specific!
Have Plenty of Supplies
If you are packing yourself you will need to get your own supplies. If you use unprinted newsprint for wrapping you can place your dishes right in the cupboard. If you use newspaper you will have to wash most things.
The Home Stores such as Lowes and Home Depot now sell moving supplies. If you are moving locally there is also a company called Frog Box that will drop off and pick up plastic box frogbox.com
Label each box for the room that it will go in. Make sure you keep a box in you vehicle with things that you will need right away. Such as coffee, toilet paper, cleaning supplies.
The following checklist is another free service which we provide. Feel free to print it out and use it as a checklist when you are moving.
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The two essential ingredients of a successful move are manpower and hauling capacity.
Calculate whether moving yourself actually makes economic sense. Add up all moving costs including boxes, packing material, gas, meals, truck rental and insurance. Compare it against a quote from a professional moving company.
Four questions to ask yourself:
- Do I have time to pack and move all my goods?
- Am I physically capable of moving heavy pieces?
- Do I know enough people who can and are willing to help me move?
- Can I drive a rental truck? If not, who can?
If you do rent a truck, it’s better to rent a larger one than you think you’ll need. Otherwise, you will have to make more than one trip.
Choosing a Professional Mover
- Ask family and friends for recommendations.
- If in doubt, check with the Better Business Bureau.
- Determine the size, distance and timing of your move.
- Choose between a “self service” move (you pack and unpack) or a “full service” move (the moving company packs and unpacks).
- Obtain a written cost estimate.
- Review insurance coverage. There are three types:
- Standard coverage
- Assessed value coverage
- Full replacement coverage
Common Things People Forget
- Get copies of medical, dental, immunization, school and veterinarian records (if moving to a new city).
- Advising subscriptions.
- Pick up dry cleaning.
- New address (keep handy at all times).
- Cleaning supplies for cleaning after movers have loaded everything.
- Garage door opener (remember to leave it behind).
- Keys (gather up all house keys and leave for new home owner).
Long Distance Moving Checklist
- Open new bank accounts
Transfer funds and anything you have in your safety deposit box.
- Health Care
Take the time to choose new health professionals. Research the Internet for doctors, dentists, specialists and hospitals. Ask new friends and working colleagues for recommendations.
Be sure to get a couple of months worth of prescriptions from your doctor before moving.
- Medical Records
Get copies of doctor’s records and case records and have them forwarded to your new doctor.
Check all of your insurance policies to ensure that coverage will continue in your new area. If not, ask your insurance agent for a recommendation.
Formally resign or transfer memberships from any local organizations or associations.
- School Records
Ask the school to make a copy for your to take with you.
- Borrowed items
Return library books, rental videos or other items you may have borrowed from friends and neighbours.
- Trip to new home
Pack a first aid box and a food and beverage “care package” for the trip to your new home.
Moving with Kids
- Provide children with as much information as possible about the move and allow them to participate in decision-making discussions.
- Familiarize the children with the new area using maps, photographs and related Internet sites. Talk about the positive aspects of their new home, school and neighbourhood. Encourage questions and invite children to talk about their worries.
- For young children, make the move an adventure. Encourage them to pack their own things, leaving favourite toys until the end.
- Resist the temptation to send children away during the move unless they are very young. Participating will help them adjust more easily to their new surroundings.
- For older children who are leaving friends, sports teams and their school, emphasize how easy it is to keep in touch through e-mail and the telephone.
- After the move, participate with the kids in local religious events, Scouts or Girl Guides and community sport teams.
No matter how well you have prepared your children, expect them to be a little upset. The emotional impact is greater for older children than for younger children. Watch for signs of depression.
On Moving Day
- Have a notepad or clipboard handy to jot down reminders
- Have everything packed and ready to go by the time your helpers arrive
- Make sure the movers have clear directions to your new home and that someone will be there to greet them.
- Make sure the moving van has a convenient place to park. Mark off the parking area with cones or other suitable objects. Make sure the moving truck doesn’t block a neighbour’s driveway.
- When loading and unloading, make sure the movers don’t walk over your neighbour’s lawn.
- Try not to move too early or too late in the day.
- Confine your pet or arrange for a friend or family member to care for your pet during the move. Another alternative is to take your pet to the groomer for the day.
- Food and refreshments for your family and the movers.
- Leave your old house as clean as you would like to find your new house. Clean as much as you can before moving day, and then make a final check after everything is out.
- Stay around until the movers are finished loading. You will be asked to sign a bill of lading and to check an inventory sheet. Read the documents carefully before signing.
- Remember the last walk-through of all rooms.
- If the movers have done a good job for you, it is customary to tip them around $20 each, depending on the difficulty of the move.
- It will be less stressful if you know that you don’t have to unpack everything in one day or even in one week.
- If you have prepared well, furniture and boxes can be unloaded directly into the correct rooms.
- Focus on one room at a time, beginning with the kitchen, followed by the bathroom.