Don't take everything with you. Sort through, throw out, give away, or
sell things you don't need anymore. When you've gotten to the bare
minimum - or everything you truly can't live without - start packing.
2. Save those old newspapers. As soon as
you get your mortgage, start saving your old newspapers for wrapping
delicate objects like china and glassware. You may want to double or
triple wrap each piece, so stack away about three times as much
newspaper as you think you'll need. If you don’t want to rewash the
plates after you move, buy packages of plain newsprint or tissue paper
for the initial wrap (your local office supply store or warehouse club
store may sell you some plain paper) and then put newsprint over that.
Or, you can buy an extra large size plastic wrap and do the initial wrap
in that, followed by newsprint.
3. The interim move. Will your new home be
ready on time? Do you need an interim move? Will you be storing your
furniture? If you're moving across state lines, it's best to store your
belongings near your new home, not your old one. That way, if you need
something you might be able to get it quickly and easily.
4. Schedule repair or renovation work ahead
of time. If you need repair, decorating, or renovation work done on your
new house, and have the extra float time, get busy scheduling the work
four to six weeks before you move. If you're planning to paint or
decorate, you may want to have that work done before you've unpacked
most things and settled into your new home.
5. Get your new utility accounts. A couple
of weeks before the move, you'll want to contact your local utility
companies (telephone, electricity, cable, gas, water) and inform them of
your move. Arrange to have these services cut off at the end of moving
day (if you're moving in the afternoon, it would be nice to be able to
drink water and use the bathroom, not to mention the telephone). Don't
forget to arrange the hookup of utilities to your new home.
6. Reserve the elevators. If you're moving
to a condominium or a co-op, or are moving out of one, you'll need to
schedule a day to move in with the building's management. Generally,
large condos (those with an elevator) require you to “reserve” the
freight elevator for your move. Do this way ahead of time or the day on
which you’d like to move may already be booked. There may even be a fee
for having the building maintenance men “oversee” your move. Ask your
new building personnel about moving-in rules, and don’t be surprised if
you’re asked to pay for the privilege.
7. Discontinue delivery services. Two weeks
before your move, you'll want to set the day to discontinue your
delivery services, like newspapers, milk, dry cleaning, or laundry. If
you're moving to a new state, your broker may be able to offer a little
advice on employing these services in your new town.
8. Change-of-address cards. Also, around
two weeks before your move, you'll have to fill out and mail your
change-of-address cards. Your local post office can give you some cards
to fill out, or you may want to have change-of-address cards preprinted.
If you receive Federal Express or UPS packages for your home-based
business, you’ll want to inform these companies of your change of
address as well.
9. Moving with pets. If you're moving with
pets, you may need to take some special precautions, according to the
American Moving and Storage Association (www.Moving.org).
Pets cannot be shipped on moving vans. They should travel with you and
wear special identification tags with your name, address, telephone
number, and the name of an alternative relative, in case you can't be
located. If you decide to ship your pet by air, make the arrangements
ahead of time. If you move across state lines, nearly every state has
laws on the entry of animals. Write to the State Veterinarian, State
Department of Animal Husbandry, or other state agency for information.
Most states require up-to-date rabies shots for dogs and cats. If you're
moving to Hawaii with your pet, you'll have to quarantine the animal for
120 days. Some pets must have an entry permit issued by the destination
state's regulatory agency. Finally, your new town (or condo or co-op)
may have restrictions on the number of dogs or cats that can live at one
residence. If this might be a problem for you, check with your new city
or village council.
10. Moving with plants. You generally won't
have a problem if you're moving house plants, but some states do require
you to have an inspection by an authorized state department agriculture
inspector. Plants are susceptible to shock when moving, and it may be
dangerous to move a plant if the temperature is below 35F or above 95F
to 100F for more than an hour. The AMC says plants can tolerate
darkness for up to a week, but it's best not to store them. Cuttings of
your favorite houseplants, while convenient, will not last as long or as
well as potted plants.
Moving Preparation is Key!