Moving Checklist

Moving Checklist in Williamsburg VA 23185To do immediately –

Find a good lender.

Notify your landlord of your intention to move.

Ask your realtor to help you find a realtor in your new city/obtain information about your new location.

Start to streamline:  have a garage sale or donate items to a local charity.  Also sort through papers/items you do not intend to move.

IMPORTANT:  Notify your insurance company (get new homeowner’s policy).  Additionally, review your homeowner’s policy to see if belongings are covered during the move.  If not, look into buying extended coverage or insuring through the mover.

If you are moving long distance, make travel arrangements with the airline, hotel, and rental car agency.  If you’re driving to your new home, get maps and plan your travel route.

Contact rental truck and/or moving company and schedule.  Get price estimates on movers and references.  Check if the mover is registered with the appropriate state Department of Transportation (see list at

Get packing supplies (i.e., boxes, packing paper, bubble wrap, furniture pads, old blankets, plastic bags, newspapers, small towels) to start packing!

Create portable packing kit with marking pens, tape measure, packing tape, masking tape, pocket knife, twine, and scissors.  Carry it with you as you pack up items around your home.

Reinforce the bottom of boxes with extra tape for added strength.  Label each box with the name of the room in your new home where it should be placed.  List the contents of the box on the side of it.  Number the boxes and keep a list of which boxes go in which room in your new home.  Label boxes containing fragile items with large red lettering.  Keep boxes to 50 lbs. or less if possible.  Don’t move flammable, corrosive, or combustible items.

Disconnect and bundle cords on television and stereo components.  Label each cord with masking tape and a description of where to connect it.

Plan and measure where your furniture will be placed in your new home.

Contact utility companies-gas, phone, electric, water, fuel, garbage collection, cable TV-of disconnect dates and new address (Get names, numbers, requirements-such as deposits).

Call your local phone company at least a week before you move for a new number.  Have service turned off at your old address.  Keep your phone connected through moving day to stay in touch with friends, family and the moving company.

Call your long distance company to ensure uninterrupted service for your long distance calling plans and other services.

Have electric, gas and water service connected IN YOUR NAME the DAY OF SETTLEMENT.  Have service turned off at your old address the day after you move.

Arrange for cable installation at your new address.

Arrange for wireless services/internet service providers

Update your address book of friends and relatives (to notify them of your change of address).

Mail change of address forms from post office (to friends, relatives, magazines, credit card companies, doctors, lawyers, accountant, workplace, schools, voter registration, motor vehicle bureau, etc.) and give post office your new address so that they can forward your mail as soon as you move.  Required forms are at the post office or online at

If you are moving from a highrise, reserve the elevator for moving day.

Drain oil and gas from your power equipment.


Arrange to put items in storage.

Make arrangements to register your kids in new schools.

Put together your kids’ current health records – keep them handy during the move.

Check regulations for licenses, tags, vaccinations, etc. for pets.

Gather all medical records from doctors, dentists, veterinarians, optometrists, etc.

Back-up all important computer files on cds/diskettes.

Update or open new bank accounts.  Transfer safe deposit box.

For high value items, obtain appraisal and gather receipts.

Make your travel arrangements to new destination.

Three weeks before the move

Continue packing.

Make arrangements to take off work on settlement day.

Make hotel arrangements for your last couple of nights in your current home.

Have small area rugs cleaned and wrapped before moving.

Two weeks before the move

Finish packing!

Change your address with the IRS.  To find out if your moving expenses may be deductible, contact the IRS at 800-829-3676 or and ask for Tax Publication 521, Moving Expenses.  Save receipts.

Reconfirm moving dates/times with your movers.

If you are driving, have your car serviced.

Donate various items to salvation army/save receipts.

Plan for special care of infants or pets during moving day.

Keep all homeowner’s documents in one file.

Pack your “survival kit” for the couple of days during the move (e.g., basic tools-hammer, screwdriver, knife, tape; payment for movers; bathroom needs; kitchen needs-disposable utensils, plates; cleaning needs-sponges, broom; personal needs-medication, clothes; keys and directions to your new home).

Dispose of any hazardous items.

Clean new home if possible (or hire cleaning service).

One week before moving

Plan how you will arrange your furniture in your new home.

Compile “purchase list” of everything you need within the first week in your new home.

Use only those household items you absolutely need-everything else should be ready to go.

Look for new doctors and dentists.  Transfer prescriptions.

Cancel deliveries/services (e.g., newspapers, gym memberships, trash service and bank accounts).

Clear out your safe deposit box.

Defrost freezer; get rid of perishable food you won’t eat before moving.

Clean house you are about to vacate (or hire cleaning service).

Get open boxes for moving your plants.

Pack your luggage.  Carry jewelry and important documents yourself.

Give a close friend or relative travel route and schedule (including overnight stops).

On moving day

Give movers phone number(s) where you can be reached at all times.

Lay down old sheets in entry and hallways to protect floor coverings.

Remove hanging fixtures.

Pack strategically:  load items like the vacuum cleaner and bedding last so they can be the first items to be unloaded.

Before the movers leave and/or you leave, check thoroughly to make sure nothing was missed.  Check inventory to ensure that everything was delivered before signing delivery papers.

Take with you:  any important records, telephone numbers, sheets and towels for first night in your new home, toiletries.

Take back rental truck with a full tank of gas.

The week after moving

Change locks on all the doors.

Compile receipts of the move for tax purposes.

Get a new propane tank for the grill and fuel for gas powered tools.

Check your home warranty coverage/establish a file.

Check out your homeowner’s association.

Check how to get new license plates.

If you have not yet found a new residence, obtain a post office box.

Plan housewarming party.