Moving house can be one of life’s most overwhelming experiences but it doesn’t have to be. The key to minimising stress is to plan out your move in advance. Then delegate as much as you can. Here are some tips to help.
Make a list of your tasks
One way to do this is to think through everything you need to do in relation to your move. Then cross-reference the list you create with the various lists available on the internet. That should give you a complete list or at least something very close to it.
Once you have your list, see if any tasks depend on any other tasks. For example, you can only start packing once you have packing materials. Then pencil in your best estimate of how long each task is likely to take. If in doubt, err on the side of caution and allow longer. Then mark the tasks you could potentially delegate if necessary.
Set a moving budget
Even though you’ll want to keep the costs of your move as low as possible, spending a bit of money can make your life easier. As a rule of thumb, the quicker you need to move, the more you should budget for your moving expenses. This is because you’re going to have less time to shop around for the best deals and/or pick up items (like packaging materials) for free.
When you set your moving budget, remember to allow for “settling in” costs once you reach your new home. At a minimum, be prepared to spend a little on convenience. For example, you might want ready meals/takeaways to save you the energy needed to cook. You might also need to replace items that don’t quite work in your new home the way they used to in your current one.
Coordinate with your service providers
Your aim should be to have your current service providers terminate their service at your current address on the day you move out (if not before) and have new services ready to go in your new one the day you move in.
Check your contract with your current provider to see how much notice you need to give them. Do your research on potential new providers as far in advance as you can. A provider should tell you how much notice they need to get utilities set up when you move home. As a rule of thumb, if your new home has the necessary connections, allow at least three weeks. Four is usually better.
Make a list of everyone you need to inform
You may think that you do everything online but there’s a good chance that any significant online account you hold (e.g. your bank account) requires you to complete your address details. They may never be used to send mail but then again they might. You have no way of knowing.
Also, there’s a very good chance that the terms and conditions of the service will require you to keep your contact details up-to-date. Updating your profiles may be tedious but it is necessary. It is, however, also a good opportunity for you to review what services you use and what accounts you have and close any which are no longer relevant.
Even if you’re absolutely sure you’ve told absolutely everyone, it might still be worthwhile setting up a postal redirect for a month, if not two or three. This will capture any letters that were sent between you informing people of your move and them fully updating all their systems. It will also capture letters from anyone you forgot to inform.
Set up a moving pack
Basically, set up a bag with your most important possessions (e.g. your key documents) and anything you’ll need to “camp indoors” for at least a day, preferably two or three.
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