Moving House Checklist
Moving house can be a stressful time, as all your worldly possessions are packed up, shifted and finally unpacked in your new home. It's only natural to worry that not everything will make it to the new home in one piece.
There's sadly no way to guarantee the safe arrival of your possessions at the other end of your journey, but there are some simple things you can do to put your mind at ease, and minimise the risk of a problem:
Have a good clear out!
Sell, give away or throw away anything you no longer want. Most of us carry boxes between properties that have remained sealed since our last move. Check everything you have and get rid of those things that are no longer wanted, this can save a lot of money (and moving around) as well as freeing up space in your new property.
Don't forget the Charity Shops when clearing out. They will hugely appreciate many of the things you may well be about to throw out, so keep them in mind (some will even come around a pick up large items like beds and cupboards)...it's always good to know your unwanted goods have gone to someone who can use them, and that they've raised a bit of cash for charity!
Don't try to move everything yourself
It can be very tempting to use the old motto "if you want a job done well, do it yourself". The fact is (based on the fact you're reading this guide!), you're probably not experienced at moving things. It may seem like the easiest thing to do, but there are some very good reasons why Removal and Relocation companies have existed for so many years...and it isn't just because of the size of their vehicles: They are experienced at moving things well.
Find a business or individual to help you move some of your more fragile and valuable items: e.g. mirrors, clocks, glassware etc... We obvious recommend you find a reputable Man and Van through FindAManAndVan.co.uk, but seriously, find a good Man and Van, check any previous customer comments left against them, and give them a call (don't forget to say where you found them!). Over the phone, you should be able to judge the level of customer care...are we being pushed to commit to a moving date, or are you being asked questions by a friendly and caring sounding person? It's amazing how much you can pick up off that first call. If they sound good, get them around to see the size of work in the move, and again, to help you judge the level of service and care you will be getting (the state of the van is often a good measure of this). Most Man and Van's will offer a free quotation on request.
When choosing a Man and Van or Removals Company, don't forget to ask about Insurance of items during the move itself. Some Man and Van services will provide such insurance, so you can claim for any items lost or damaged during the move. This is an area a lot of people often take a risk on, but be sure you understand the risk you are taking, (e.g. if the removals van is involved in an accident, or items are damaged during the move).
Once you've found the Man and Van you like, book them before they get too busy!
Sort out the Insurance
There are 4 areas to look at here:
- Close off Buildings and Contents Insurance on your old property. Ensure the contents insurance remains active until the final item will have left the property, and keep the Buildings Insurance active until you no longer own the property.
- Removals Insurance (if required) Ensure your Man and Van has provided you with written insurance acknowledge if they are insuring your things for the course of the move.
- Storage Insurance (if applicable/required) Ensure you have been provided with written insurance acknowledge if you are placing your items into storage (even if this just for a few days)
- New Property Insurance. Ensure your new Buildings
Insurance policy is in-place for the moment you own
the new property, and that your new Contents Insurance
policy is active for the day your things are moved into
Make a note of relevant phone numbers
Have a note of key numbers (you may need different ones to your old and new properties) such as:
- Your doctor
- A plumber
- An electrician
- Your insurance claims number
- Your solicitor for the move
- Your Removal Company/Man and Van
- A good friends number (for any favours!)
If you're not paying someone to pack your things, then you'll need to allow yourself plenty of time to pack things.
Get packing things as early as you can to avoid any rush. Packing is one of the most important things you can do to protect your things during transport.
Supplies to have before you start packing:
Plenty of strong boxes. You can get these from specialist
suppliers, or just ask re-use good boxes from your local
shop/supermarket. If you choose specialist boxes, you'll
find options such as Wardrobe Boxes with built-in Hanger
Rails for your clothes.
Other Cardboard (not neccessarily strong boxes) for wrapping around items
Packing Materials: Bubble Wrap, Wrapping Paper, Newspaper (be careful when using Newspaper as the print will come off on fabric etc..).
Towels, old linen, and blankets. These are great to wrap and cushion fragile items.
Bags: You will need bags of different sizes, both to seperate things within boxes, and also to hold screws and other fittings for disassembled items.
- Be sure all box bases
are securely constructed
Add additional tape or discard boxes that are suspect.
- Isolate those items you will be taking in-person e.g. Passports
- Clearly label each box with details of the contents and the destination room (this will help when unloading the removals van)
- Start packing room by room, leaving out the items you will need on the day, or as part of your "wake up routine".
- Watch the weight of each box. You don't want the bottom falling out or for you to put your back out trying to move!
- Dismantle items like beds, tables and drawers where appropriate. Be sure to put all screws/nuts/bolts into a sealed plastic bag (freezer bags are great for this) and tape to the inside of a drawer, or tie to a leg. Where you leave drawers in an item, ensure they are securely held closed e.g. tape them closed.
- Wrap mirrors and pictures with cardboard, being sure to secure the cardboard well and mark the cardboard in large print as "FRAGILE".
- Check owner's manuals for any White Goods and
Appliances. Check for any special instructions for moving.
Move all boxes to one place
This will allow you to easily check that rooms have been fully emptied, as well as speeding up the process of loading the removals van.
Plan out your remaining items
You'll want to ensure you have the right amount of food as well as ensuring you have something to drink just before moving, and during the move.
It is worth while having a box that you will take yourself, with key bits for the other end e.g. kettle, tea bags, milk (straight from the fridge), biscuits and other snacks. It's thirsty and hungry work moving!
Best of luck on your day of moving!