Your checklist for moving home

Moving to a new home can become overwhelming very quickly. The excitement of searching for houses, finally settling on one before whiling away hour, pouring over the floor plans and imagining yourself sitting in the lounge or cooking in the kitchen soon gives way to the stresses of finances, paperwork and living on take away and disposable cutlery.

By Raman Sandhu

Having been through the process multiple times ourselves, we would like to offer a helping hand and help create some sense of order so it doesn’t feel so daunting. This is such a big moment in your lives, you should enjoy it as much as possible!

  • Set a date – when are you planning the move? You may need to move out and move in on the same day so think carefully about what would be the least stressful way of doing this.
  • Give notice – for renters, you need to give notice to your Landlord so that you don’t end up paying two lots of rent or mortgage because you left it too late.
  • Declutter – you can start to get rid of items you know you won’t need or use again. To save money, effort and time in simply moving these objects to another home (and use up valuable storage), why don’t you re-sell or donate to charity? Once this has been done, you will have a better idea as to how much you actually need to move.
  • Removal quotes – the budget for this can vary. You may have a sizeable budget for a removal company to help or you may not have too much to move so can rely on help from friends and family. Check out our list of partners for some tried and trusted removal companies.
  • Re-direct your mail – you can set up a re-direction with the postal service before the date you move so that you ensure nothing gets missed.
  • Inform your banks – ensure that your bank is notified about your new address details and the date of your proposed move so that sensitive information doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Additionally, you need to inform pension services, credit card companies and any investment fund you might have.
  • Get insured – take out home insurance against your new home. Buildings insurance is usually something you will have to do when taking out a mortgage but it is good to cross it off your list. Also, insurance protecting your possessions (especially when they are being moved to another location) is a smart move whether renting or buying. You can organise this insurance up to a month before you move in. Other insurers you use will also need to be told, such as pet insurance, life insurance etc.
  • Motor-related changes – contact the DVLA to change the address on your driving licence and car ownership certificate; you could get fined if you don’t amend this. This can also take time to process so be ahead of the game. Also use this category to inform your car insurer. Your insurance company will likely change your pricing quotes based on your location so you could even save money! Remember that they may not cover any claims if you haven’t informed them of your move.
  • Meter readings – just before you say goodbye to your old home, take photographs of your gas, electricity and water meter readings. This will ensure that you aren’t charged for the new owner’s usage. Let these suppliers know of your move; you can choose to stay with them or change company depending on their prices.
  • Let the Doc know – inform your doctor and dentist of your change of address. If you need to change practices then they need time to send your records over. If you have children or dependents, their schools, colleges and universities must have their records amended.
  • Make your vote count – head to the local government website to update your address for the electoral roll. You want to be able to vote locally and nationally. Also, ask your local authority for a final statement of your council tax. If moving area you might even get a refund!
  • Screen time – Update your TV License details so your new home is covered. Also, let your broadband, landline and mobile phone companies know of your change of address, too. Most broadband companies will be able to move your package across seamlessly if you give them enough notice. However, you may also want to take this opportunity to swap provider.
  • Deliveries – let your ‘everyday’ delivery companies know about your change of residence, too. Food deliveries, employers, magazine and newspaper deliveries, milkmen, dog walkers… take a moment to think about who else needs to know (including your friends and family!)
  • Get rid of the kids! – for those who have children or pets, speaking from first-hand experience, it is SO much easier to get through moving day if they are occupied elsewhere and not under your feet. Ask a close family member or someone you trust to look after them for the day.
  • Be kind – think about who will be moving into your old home. What information might be useful for them to know? Could you label keys, gather together any manuals they might need or write a note about bin collection day? These small gestures will make your buyer very happy indeed!
  • Finish your food – plan your meals to use up all the food in your cupboards and freezer.. nobody will be able to do much with boxes of fish fingers and ice cubes when it comes to moving day.
  • Important boxes – keep the following items close at hand in boxes that will stay with you or will be easily distinguishable in your new home:
    • Box of essentials (disposable plates and cups, rolls of tissue paper, snacks and some drinks
    • Important documentation (passports, documents you need at hand for the move etc.)
    • Phone charger, wallets/purses and valuables
    • Cleaning supplies such as bin bags, wipes, bleach and a vacuum cleaner
    • PJs, clothes for the day after moving, a towel and toiletries
  • New keys – if you have bought your new home, once you have moved in, get a locksmith round to set up a new locks and set of keys that only you have for security purposes. If you have one, change alarm codes for the same reason.
  • Stamp duty – if your property cost more than £125,000 (or £300,000 as a first-time buyer) you’ll have to pay your stamp duty bill within 30 days.

And relax…. hopefully having followed this list you will be all sorted and ready to enjoy settling into your new home.