Learn to love your lists
Forgetful, chaotic, or just plain preoccupied? Everyone can use a helpful list when it comes to moving home.
We’ve developed this one from nearly 50 years of experience, and though you’ll probably want to add something, it’s a good place to start.
Notify the following of your change in address (as applicable):
- Post Office (to redirect mail)
- Financial institutions (to transfer and/or close accounts)
- County clerk/voter registrar
- Department of taxation
- Leasing company
- Insurance company (to transfer or terminate household insurance)
- Life insurance company
- Car insurance company
- Health insurance company
- School principal (to obtain a letter regarding the status of your children in school)
- Shops and stores where you have charge accounts
- Relatives, friends and regular correspondents
- Club memberships
- Magazines, newspapers and other subscriptions
- Doctor(s) and dentist (to obtain copies of your records)
- Your lawyer
- Your place of worship
Discontinue these services (as applicable):
- Cable/satellite/Internet television service
- Newspaper/publication delivery
- Internet service provider
- Defrost your refrigerator/freezer and drain all water hoses.
- Disconnect your washing machine and drain water.
- Check with manufacturer to ensure all major appliances are correctly prepared for moving.
- Arrange for electricity and gas companies to disconnect any fittings from the supply.
- Dispose of items you do not wish to take with you.
- Return books, videos, etc.
- Remove your own fixtures and fittings from walls.
- Put important items, such as identification and/or passports and tickets, in your personal luggage so they are not accidentally packed.
- Arrange for someone to look after your children on the packing days. (This can be a stressful time for them.)
The following are classified as dangerous goods and cannot be stored or transported:
- New or partially used cans of paint
- Linseed oil
- Bleach products
- Gas cylinders, turpentine
- Cleaning fluids
- Aerosols (any kinds)
- Vegetable oils
- Chemical sets
A few don’ts:
- Don’t forget to detail any high-value items (e.g., antiques, furs, paintings) in your transit protection declaration—a separate valued list is requested.
- Don’t put breakables in drawers.
- Don’t put liquid in drawers (sauce bottles, perfumes, etc.).
- Don’t overload furniture with too many items (in drawers).
- Don’t store perishable foods, such as cereals, flours, etc.
- Don’t polish your furniture prior to your move. Polishing surfaces can cause furniture to condensate when wrapped.
- Don’t store or transport jewelry, money, legal documents, taxation papers, insurance policies or other high-value/irreplaceable articles. (Keep these items with you.)
- Don’t forget to check your home for any belongings the packing crew may have missed—before they leave.
One last look around…
- Anything left in the attic, garden, garage or basement?
- No clothes at the dry cleaners, shoes at shoe repair shops, sporting goods in lockers at clubs/schools?
- Are the water heater, main power and gas connections turned off?
- If possible, turn off air conditioners and use them only when necessary during packing. Furniture kept in a constantly cooled climate may condensate when suddenly exposed to hot air. Allowing your furniture to adapt to the warm air can be helpful in eliminating moisture problems during transit.
- Pack your suitcases and move them (together with your valuables, passports, and tickets) to a safe place, such as a trusted neighbor’s home. This will prevent them from being accidentally packed with your goods.
- Put your personal telephone and address book with your carry-on luggage for the flight. You may want to get in touch with people later.
- Dispose of all remaining flammables, dangerous, or hazardous materials. Throw or give away bottles of nail polish, and liquids in glass bottles.
- Are your windows and doors locked? Old house keys surrendered?
All done? Get a good night’s rest!