Moving house is a monster of a task. We're here to make it as easy as possible for you, so we've put together a printable checklist for you here, so you have it on hand as you pack and progress through your move.
4 Weeks Before Moving House
Four weeks out from moving day is a good time to start organising your move. Below are some things you can get happening before the excitement of moving day hits.
If you are renting, give notice to your landlord now. Arrange to settle any outstanding debts.
Start packing now if you haven't yet! Here is our guide for getting started: Packing to move house? Where do you start? For more ideas see the How to Pack for a Move section of this guide.
Arrange insurance & storage - Moving insurance for your stuff in the case of loss, theft or damage is generally included with your removalist booking if you have chosen a reputable service. It may pay to call your insurance provider and ask if there is any provisions if you have special items that may require extra protection. Insurance requirements will vary depending on your situation, have a good chat with your insurer to assess your needs for insurance during the move, your existing policy may cover it or you may need to purchase and insurance add-on. Don't forget to consider insuring any items that you may be putting into storage. Take a look at our guide to finding the best self storage here.
Make note of any items that may require additional moving insurance or special freight and/or packaging. Not sure what's covered when you move? Check out our handy guide here.
Downsize - Start making lists of what you want to keep and what you want to purge. The list of things to keep will form an inventory list that will help you track your items, it can become a check-list to make sure you haven't lost anything along the way. Look in every room and cupboard, under the stairs, under your house, the garage, the yard.
Let the purge begin. Start selling stuff you want to sell, have a garage sale, market stall or suitcase rummage. Go to the dump. Donate to charity.
Guides to help with downsizing:
Tips for Downsizing Your Home
How To Host A Successful Garage Sale
Tips For Getting Rid Of Old Furniture
Accommodation - are you moving long distance? Do you need to research any travel or accommodation arrangements? Often the earlier you book travel, the better the deal.
A quick list of other things to start activating could be:
- Start sourcing boxes
- Book the removalists and/or hire vehicles.
- Alert service providers of your change of address.
- Do you have a pet to arrange long distance travel for? Is your best friend up to date with vaccinations?
- Start eating from the freezer now! There's probably some stuff in there you really should throw out too.
- Book cleaners and carpet cleaners for cleaning of the property you are leaving.
- Organise baby/pet sitting if required.
- If you have a yard or a court-yard you may need to book some garden maintenance to clean things up. Or get out the pruning shears and the mower and give it a DIY once over.
- Begin recruiting any friends or family that could help you on the day, give them heaps of time to put it in their calendar and to be constantly reminded about it up until you move.
3 weeks before moving house
Three weeks away from moving, here are some things you can do:
- Arrange leave from work for the week of the move, and maybe a little time afterwards as well for settling in.
- Book the cleaning of your existing property, and the new one too if you don't want to do the preliminary clean yourself.
- Update your computer. Download updates and back up your files to an external hard-drive or cloud storage. It may also be a wise idea to scan or photograph important documents and valuables for storing electronically too.
- Arrange to re-direct your mail to your new address from a certain date, until a month or two after you move just in case you forget to change your address with a any services that use your address.
- Let people know you're moving (if you haven't already).
- Put all of the important paperwork that you may need immediately in its own box, filo-fax or folder so you can take it with you personally on moving day.
- Arrange for the disconnection of all your utility accounts for a couple of days after you are scheduled to move out so you can still use power for cleaning if you need it.
- Arrange for connection of your utility accounts at your new address so they are ready for the day you move in. Preferably get them connected for the second-last business day before you move in. These could include electricity, gas, water, broadband, landline phone connections, pay TV, security monitoring, etc.
- Organise parking permits for the removalists if required. More information about parking permits.
2 weeks before moving house
A fortnight out from your move and you could be getting tired and nervous, but keep the momentum going and make sure you don't forget to do these things!
- Confirm booking and moving arrangements with the moving company.
- Confirm booking of any additional hire vehicles you intend to use.
- If you are doing your own move, do you need ropes, tie-downs, tarps, blankets or a trolley?
- Confirm baby/pet sitting if required.
- Have you figured out if you need storage? Book some now if you do.
- If you need regular medications, make sure you have sufficient repeats on your prescriptions before you leave the area. Make sure you have enough for about a month.
More ideas here:
Moving house checklist change of address
The Ultimate Guide To Moving House
1 week before moving house
Eat from your fridge and pantry as much as possible leading up to moving day. Only move the food that you don't get through, or if you can and have the inclination, you can donate it to a charity that supports those in immediate need in your local area. Schedule a grocery delivery to the new property to arrive a few hours after you do on moving day. You will be hungry at some point!
Clean out the fridge and the freezer (and underneath it). How many large appliances can you unplug or disconnect now?
Some things to remember to do now:
- Have you got anything you need to pick up before you move away from the area (dry cleaning/laundry, etc.)?
- Do you need to return any library books or borrowed items from neighbours?
- Did you book a hire vehicle to help? Do you need to collect it this week?
- Disassemble as much furniture as you can live without now and stack neatly with the fittings labelled in a zip-lock back and taped onto the furniture (you may be able to tape some of the parts together as well to keep it all in a kit).
- Finish as much of the packing as you possibly can. This is it, bare essentials now until you hit the new pad.
- Have you re-distributed, sold or dumped all of your purged items?
- Dump any rubbish you have accumulated during the packing up process.
- Pack an overnight bag (or even for a few days) for each person in the household.
The day before moving day
Okay, now we are at the pointy end of the situation - but if you are organised, things will go as smoothly as you hope. Now is the time to live basic, use some muscle and call in the help!
Confirm your moving arrangements again and confirm arrival times. Verify the costs and the payment methods and ask for a contact mobile number. Finalise any written directions or inventory lists that you may need to share with them.
Some things to do now are:
- Disassemble the last of the furniture.
- Do you have the keys for the new place? If so, do a quick check the cleaning is done and it has been prepared to your standard.
- If you are renting, this is a good time to complete your condition report, note any existing damage - take photos!
- Are you picking up a hire vehicle today or tomorrow?
- Finish packing any last minute items.
On the move
First things first, you need a good moving playlist.
Take your cutlery draw to the new house ahead of time, this is especially easy if you use a removable cutlery tray. This means you don't need to pack it and you're essentials are available when you are starving from the hard work of the move and ready for the first meal in the new place.
Stock the bathrooms, toilets and showers with the essentials (one less thing to think about when you are busy and in need!)
- Get up early and have a hearty breakfast, but try not to make too much mess or leave washing up.
- Collect any vehicles you are hiring or borrowing if you haven't already.
- Get started! If you are moving yourself, make sure you use common sense, health and safety principals, and safe lifting techniques.
- Keep valuables such as jewelry, important documents and passports with you for the move if you can, it's better to be safe than sorry with these things.
- Pack any remaining fridge and freezer food into an esky with ice packs for the journey.
- Introduce yourself to the removalists and let them know you are there to answer any questions and provide them with guidance.
- Supervise the loading of the truck as much as you can and watch for damage.
- Tidy each room as you go.
- Do a final tour of your old address to make sure you have gotten absolutely everything out.
- Plan for easy meals or take-out.
- Supervise the unloading of the truck, this is a good time to direct the crew to leave certain things in certain rooms. If necessary give the movers a quick tour of the rooms.
- How are you paying the removalists? Make sure this is taken care of up-front or planned for on the day so your payment can be processed according to the removalists accepted payment methods.
- Make sure your 'essentials kit' is with you and accessible.
- If you didn't get the cleaner to do it for you or if you didn't have access to your property prior to your arrival, now is the time to do your initial clean.
- Assemble your furniture before unpacking.
- Ask the removalists to help assemble the beds so you can fall into bed when you are exhausted from the day.
- Plug in your large appliances before unpacking.
- Ok ... now you can unpack. If you notice any damage, snap a photo straight away and notify the moving company at your earliest opportunity. Unpacking will be more or less variable in its level of frustration, however the colour coding
and priority rating system can ease this stress.
Read more in our guide: First night in your new home checklist