When you're moving, it's easy to get wrapped up in the process of decluttering, packing your stuff, and cleaning your home. With so many tasks to juggle, it's easy to forget about—or procrastinate—making essential phone calls to places like your utilities providers, doctors, and other institutions. It's important not to leave this task till you've taped up your last box and are on the road to your new home.
Calls to make
Tackling that list of pre-move calls to make is one of the most tedious moving tasks, and the longer you put it off, the worse it'll seem. Here is a list of essential calls to make at least two weeks before you move:
- Cable/internet provider: Call your cable/internet provider at least two weeks before your move. This will give them time to schedule a technician to come to your current home and cancel your service, if required. If you are sticking with the same provider, you can also schedule an appointment to get services set up at your new home. If you're switching providers, start calling around and organizing your new service a few weeks in advance so you don't have to live without internet for longer than is necessary when you're settling in.
- Utilities: Cancel your utilities for the day after you plan to move, and set up your new utiltiies for the day before you plan to move in. That way, you won't have to worry about packing or unpacking in the dark, and you have a bit of leeway in case of delays. If you are moving in the winter, you may wait to cancel your utilties till the day before the new tenant moves in to avoid frozen pipes.
- You childrens' school: As soon as you close on your new home, call your kids' school and begin the process of transferring their records to their new school. A week or two before your closing date, call their new school and find out what they'll need from you, and schedule a meeting for a few days after you arrive at your new home.
- Credit card company: Call any credit card suppliers, including bank-issued and store credit cards, and change your address for billing purposes.
- Car insurance: Different states have different levels of required coverage. As soon as you know you're moving, especially if you're moving out of state, call your car insurance provider to find out the new requirements and make any necessary changes. If you're moving within the same city, you should still call—rates can vary from neighorhood to neighborhood.
- Other recurring charges: If you have a gym membership or any other subscription service, call about a month ahead of your move to either cancel the service or transfer your address.
Other tasks to complete
Once you've crossed the dreaded pre-move call list off your to-do list, you can turn your attention to other matters:
- Change of address: At least two weeks before you move, visit your local post office and fill out a change of address form. You can fill it out online, but they will charge you a small fee. Again, you should do this at least 2 weeks in advance.
- Change the locks: Before you move, purchase new locks for your new home and install them the day you move in—you don't know how many people the old tenants gave keys to. You can do it yourself or call a locksmith.
- Change your driver's license: Go online and fill out a change of address for your driver’s license. This should be done within 15 days of closing.
- Set up a waste management company: If you can, ask your new neighbors who they use and get some information about their experience with the company. It is often easier to go with a company that your neighbors currently use and approve of. Make sure this is set up to come the day of or week that you move in, because you will have a lot of trash.
- Clean your new home: If you are able, hiring cleaners to help tidy up your new home either before you arrive. You can also do it yourself—rent a vacuum to clean the carpets, wash the blinds/curtains, scrub the bathrooms (especially the toilets and showers), and even wash down the walls.
Moving is a busy time, and it's easy to forget or put off the tasks you are most dreading, such as making phone calls, changing your address, and cleaning your new home. Taking care of these tasks early in the moving process will leave you with more time and energy to declutter, pack up your belongings, and focus on all the exciting things about moving.