How to Organize a Stress-Free Move

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Moving day is around the corner - are you ready? Here are some suggestions for making the transition to your new home as easy as possible.

Things You'll Need

  • Change Of Address Forms
  • Maps
  • Phone Books
  • Boxes
  • Tape
  • Bubble Wraps
  • Connected Organizers
  • Personal Organizers
  • Cellular Phones

At Least 1 Month Before the Move

  • Arrange to change your mailing address with businesses, utilities, government agencies, and other entities as soon as you know your new address.

  • Check your savings and checking balances and make the necessary arrangements with your bank.

  • Contact the appropriate delivery and utility services and arrange turn-on and turn-off dates.

  • Notify your landlord about the move (if applicable) and set up an appointment to collect your deposit refund and hand over your keys.

  • Arrange with your real estate agent or new landlord to obtain your new keys before you move.

  • Set up medical and veterinary appointments for family members and pets, respectively.

  • Obtain any necessary vaccinations and documents for the jurisdiction you're moving to, if applicable.

  • Make necessary travel arrangements, such as hotel reservations for a moving trip of longer than a day.

  • Inventory your possessions. Use this list to determine the number of boxes and the size of the truck you will need for your move.

  • Estimate moving costs, such as packing, rental, moving company and travel expenses (see Related eHows).

  • Decide, based on expenses and physical limitations, if you'll be moving yourself, hiring movers, or some combination of both, and make the necessary arrangements.

At Least 2 Weeks Before the Move

  • Reconfirm your moving date with the moving or rental company.

  • Plan your packing and loading by writing down what you have to do.

  • Purchase any moving supplies needed, including bubble wrap, boxes, tape and plastic bags.

  • Start packing two weeks in advance, and pack a little every day, concentrating on one room at a time. Get family members to help out by assigning each person a room for which he or she is responsible.

  • Label all boxes and containers, such as by room, contents or fragility, so you'll know exactly what each contains when you get to the new house.

  • Donate, sell or throw away everything you don't want to take with you.

  • Empty your freezer and clean it out a week before you move, and start to unplug and pack away remaining appliances.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you have children, talk to the old and new schools 3 or 4 months in advance.
  • Remember, it often can be cheaper to replace household items than to move them.
  • Save money by asking friends and family for boxes that they would be willing give away.
  • Call friends to help with packing or loading - they are an invaluable resource during this hectic time.
  • Consider leaving your kids and pets with a sitter on moving day.

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