Guide to moving home

Our tips for moving house are sure to help reduce the stress of your big move day.

Six weeks before the move, or as early as possible

  • Confirm your moving date with your HSPC solicitor estate agent. It is worth considering that mid-week dates are often quieter than Fridays and bank holidays, this can make getting services like a removal company easier. 
  • Order new furniture as they can often have long lead times.
  • Request quotes from the removal company. Get recommendations from friends or relatives or alternatively visit the British Association of Removers. Having the removal company do the packing for you is more costly but it also makes moving day run much more smoothly and is less stressful.
  • You could also consider man and van quotes or speaking to family and friends and hiring a van to do it yourself.
  • Get in touch with schools and nurseries in the area to ensure that you register children as early as possible. You’ll also need to consider ordering new uniforms etc.
  • Start to have a clear out. Auction, sell, donate, recycle, freecycle anything that you don’t need. It is costly to take things with you that you no longer need or want.

Four weeks to go

  • Order packing materials –it’s never too early to start packing especially non-essential items such as books and non-seasonal clothes etc. One of the biggest mistakes people make is leaving it too late to pack resulting in frayed nerves and broken items when things are rushed at the end.
  • Start to contact people to tell them you are moving. Make sure to use our handy who to tell you are moving checklist.
  • Ensure that you are insured! This can either be arranged through your own home insurance or may be available through your removal company.
  • You should also consider insurance for your new property. You will likely be required to have buildings insurance as a requirement of your mortgage, but you need to make sure that your contents are insured also. Your mortgage adviser can help you with this.
  • Organise for someone to look after your kids and/or pets. It will make for a much less stressful day if you know your loved ones are being well cared for and you don’t have to worry about them escaping out the door on your moving day.

Two weeks to go

  • Re-direct your mail.
  • Make sure your friends and relatives have your new address.
  • De-register with your doctor, dentist, vet, optician and any other local services if you are moving out of the area and register with a new one in the area where your new home is located.
  • Remember to cancel window cleaners, gardeners, newspapers etc.
  • Create a file of key documents to hand over to the people who will be moving in to your old home. Include instruction leaflets, information on heating systems and appliances, details of rubbish collections and recycling schemes.
  • Round up all of the keys to your home. Make sure you get them from all friends, family and neighbours and discuss passing these to your solicitor.

One week to go

  • Confirm the arrival times with your moving company and make sure that the movers have details of your new address in advance.
  • You should be progressing well with your packing. If not, be sure to start now!
  • Use a colour coding system on your boxes, assigning each room in your new house a different colour. Ideally use a floor plan (available from HSPC.co.uk) to easily highlight which room is which colour for those helping out on moving day. Mark each box, case and item of furniture with the appropriate colour, and then put signs on the doors of your new home as soon as you arrive to ensure that the furniture and boxes end up in the right place. This is especially useful for bedrooms, where you don’t want to have to move large items of furniture such as beds if they are left in the wrong rooms.

One day to go

  • Make sure to defrost the freezer and empty the kitchen cupboards.
  • Pack a moving day survival kit! Tea, coffee, biscuits, kettle, bed linens – all the essentials that you will need on your arrival at your new home.

On moving day

  • Take the movers around your home, explaining what is to be taken with you, and what is to be left behind. Point out fragile boxes, your survival kit or other items that you will be taking with you in your own transport.
  • Ensure that the movers have your mobile number and that you have theirs.
  • Record all meter readings –if possible take a photo.
  • Check that all windows are secure and that utilities are turned off.
  • Give the property a good clean, ensuring things are well presented for the new owners. You may wish to hire a professional cleaning agency to do this.
  • Do a final sanity check once the van is loaded to ensure that everything has been taken with you, and remember to double check the garden, shed and garage.
  • Collect the keys for your new home from your solicitor.

At your new home

  • Remember to colour code the doors to help your moving team work to your floor plan and put the right boxes in the right places.
  • Put key documents somewhere safe once you arrive at your new home so they won’t be disturbed when you first arrive and be lost by different people moving boxes and furniture around.
  • Read utility meters –again take a photo if possible.
  • It can be a good idea to change the locks in your new home.
  • Have the boiler serviced and the electrical wiring checked.
  • Sit back, order a take-away and enjoy a bottle of bubbly in your new home!
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