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All Real Estate Professionals are eager to help you buy or sell your home. But what to do in preparation for "The Big Move"?
Planning the Big Move!
Timeline: Two Months In Advance
Explore and expunge.
Go through every room of your house and decide what you’d like to keep and what you can get rid of. Think about whether any items will require special packing or extra insurance coverage.
Donate Your Old Goods if they’re in good condition.
Do your homework.
Start investigating moving company options. Do not rely on a quote over the phone; request an on-site estimate. Get an estimate in writing from each company, and make sure it has a USDOT (U.S. Department of Transportation) number on it.
Create a Tracking Record. Your iPad is ideal.
Use this to keep track of everything—all your estimates, your receipts, and an inventory of all the items you’re moving. Take images of everything and put it in the Cloud or whatever you use for storing records.
Acquire school records and establish transfer protocol
Go to your children’s school and arrange for their records to be transferred to their new school district. Same with their medical records - schools require proof of immunizations!
Timeline: Six Weeks In Advance
Price out moving supplies. Price out hiring someone to pack for you.
When you’ve found the best price, order boxes and other supplies such as tape, Bubble Wrap, and permanent markers. Don’t forget to order specialty containers, such as dish barrels or wardrobe boxes. Post-its in a variety of colors will be indispensable.
Start using up things that you don’t want to move, like frozen or perishable foods and cleaning supplies. Anything that has a shelf-life should be used up.
Get your old house plans, or dimension everything.
Check all the dimensions in your new home, if possible, and make sure larger pieces of furniture will fit through the door. This will make establishing a traffic flow at the new place easier. And you’ll find out what the post-its are for!
Timeline: One Month in advance
Choose your servicepeople wisely. This is the time to commit.
Select your service companies (mover, electronics installer, cable, et al) and get written confirmation of your moving date, costs, and all appurtenant details. Use credit cards as much as possible so you have immediate recourse in the unlikely event you aren’t ecstatic over their service.
Pack your personals, partner. Time has come today!
Organize and coordinate packing the things that you use most infrequently, such as the waffle iron and croquet set. While packing, note items of special value that might require additional insurance from your moving company. Talk to your insurance agent! The I.A. is the most important invisible person in the matrix. Photograph all your property of value. Find receipts or validation of value before you pack it up. Don’t need a pic of the Cheerios.
The more distinctive the identification the less likely it will be lost or misplaced. Create your own inventory list with each box. The most valuable items (jewelry, watches, family heirlooms etc.) should go with you in your vehicle. Under your personal scrutiny.
Notify all interested parties, particularly the post office.
Most can be done online, some require your personal presence. Go to your local post office and fill out a change-of-address form, or do it online at usps.gov. Have a trusted neighbor? Ask them to look out for your mail for a couple weeks.
Alert the following of your move: banks, brokerage firms, your employer’s human resources department, magazine and newspapers you subscribe to, and credit card, insurance, and utility companies.
Forward medical records.
Arrange for medical records to be sent to any new health-care providers or obtain copies of them yourself. Ask for referrals.
Two Weeks Before
Arrange to be off from work the day before, day of, and day after moving day.
Notify your office that you plan to supervise the move and therefore need the time off.
Take your car to a garage, and ask the mechanic to consider what services might be needed if you’re moving to a new climate.
If you’ll be changing banks, remove the contents of your safe-deposit box and put them in the safe box that you’ll take with you on moving day.
Contact the service and moving companies.
Reconfirm the arrangements. Get deposits done. Use credit cards as possible.
One Week Before
Stock up on meds you’ll need during the next couple of weeks.
Pack your suitcases.
Aim to finish your general packing a few days before your moving date. Then pack suitcases for everyone in the family with enough clothes to wear for a few days.
A Few Days Before
Defrost the freezer.
If your refrigerator is moving with you, make sure to empty, clean, and defrost it at least 24 hours before moving day.
Double-check the details.
Reconfirm the service people and moving company’s arrival time and other specifics and make sure you have prepared exact, written directions to your new home for the staff. Include contact information, such as your cell phone number.
Plan for the payment.
If you haven’t already arranged to pay your service people with a credit card, get a money order, cashier’s check, or personal check for payment and tip. If the staff has done a good job, 10 to 15 percent of the total fee is a good tip. If your move was especially difficult, you might tip each mover up to $100. Don’t forget that refreshments are always appreciated.
On Moving Day
Make sure that the moving truck that shows up is from the company you hired: The USDOT number painted on its side should match the number on the estimate you were given. Scams are not unheard-of.
Before the movers leave, sign the bill of lading/inventory list and keep a copy. Photograph each service person and their vehicles, including license plates.
Week Before Double-Check:
Check your destination - be sure the previous residents have all their personal property out of there. Unless otherwise indicated in your contract, anything left is subject to removal at their expense.
Check utilities. Remember, it’s your responsibility to have the power, sewer, garbage et al connected in your name. In the unlikely event the seller hasn’t disconnected something, be sure to have it done before move-in.
Set appointment with your cable/internet provider for the day of or day after the move. You will very likely want to have the option to relax in your new environment with your own comfort accessories.
Day Before the Move
Time for your own reconnaissance! Get over to your new home and inspect it again. It’s easier to correct something when it isn’t covered with furniture and boxes, definitely.
Establish your own in-house traffic plan. Designate paths where you want the movers to go using something like colored post-its on the hall walls so it’s easy for anyone, regardless of language, to follow.
And be sure to personally direct traffic. It’s easier to have them move the divan or couch than to do it yourself. And moving a big box of China from the bath to the kitchen isn’t much fun either.
Today you get to execute all your painstaking plans! Don’t be bashful with any of the folks you’ve hired, you are paying them, they aren’t doing you any favors. Courtesy and accommodation are fine, just be sure to have a timeline for refreshments and rest predetermined.
Determine the movers/installers chain of command. When you have a question, concern or command you only want the crew chief, boss or owner of the ship handling it.
Stay out of the way! But be within earshot, be visible. And smile. That does wonders to make them comfortable handling your most precious personal items.
Follow your plan. Regardless, there will be unexpected faux pax in the flow of things but when you’re on track the damage and distress will be minimal.
Now go enjoy your new home!
For more help getting your next home or getting your current home on the market be sure to get a true Professional Opinion from The Phil Leng Team!
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.