Moving Home Guide: Your Moving Home Checklist
You’ve found your dream home, had your offer accepted and you’ve gone through the legal process to make it yours. But there are plenty of steps to take that you might not have accounted for, from working out your completion date and informing businesses you have accounts with to finding where your fuse box is. In our moving home checklist, we’ve compiled all of the steps you need to take to make the moving process as smooth and stress-free as possible.
This guide will explain everything from the different people you need to notify of your move, to what you need to consider when hiring a removal company and what you need to do first on the day you move in. Moving can be daunting and there’s a lot to consider and remember, but with our moving home checklist, you can ensure you’ve checked off the key steps for a hassle-free move.
The first step in our moving home checklist is to confirm with your estate agent and solicitor what your exchange date is so you can plan for moving. The date will need to be agreed with other people in the property chain.
If you’re currently renting a property, you’ll need to provide notice in accordance with your contract, which typically varies from one to three months in advance of your moving date.
When you’re preparing to move, you need to inform certain organisations and businesses of your new address so your account details can be updated. In this section of our moving home guide, we’ll take you through everyone you need to inform so that you don’t risk any post going to your old address by mistake.
An easy way to make sure you don’t miss any forgotten accounts or subscriptions is to redirect your post, which you can do between three and 12 months. The process is easy and ensures anything you’ve forgotten about will arrive at your new property.
When you start packing up your belongings, you may find you have more than you initially thought. Instead of moving everything and potentially increasing the cost of your move, decluttering at this stage can be beneficial. In this section, we discuss how you can successfully declutter and prepare for your moving day.
Moving is stressful, especially if you have a lot of belongings and large items of furniture. It can be worthwhile hiring a removal company to help you make the process easier. But choosing the right company can be tricky – we’ll help you determine the right company for your needs.
The day has arrived and you’re ready to move into your property – but before you can start unpacking and settling in, there are a few things to check to make your life easier. In this section of the moving home guide, we’ll run through the aspects of your home you need to locate before you can begin unpacking.
Moving Home during Coronavirus
Tenants and home buyers alike are allowed to move home, in spite of lockdown measures, providing they adhere to certain guidelines that the government has outlined. The measures in place vary around the UK, with each country setting out its own rules and regulations to keep residents safe. Home buyers can still move home, but the social distancing measures are as follows:
- In England, buyers and renters can move home and removal firms are allowed to remain open, as are estate agents and letting agents. However, people outside your household or support bubble can only help you to move if it’s deemed absolutely necessary.
- In Scotland, house moves and viewings are allowed, along with all activities in connection with purchasing, selling, letting or renting properties, such as house surveys and removals.
- In Wales, house moves are only permitted if the moving date cannot be delayed until after lockdown for any reason. If social distancing is adhered to, connected activities like exchanging keys and removals are still permitted.
- In Northern Ireland, house moves and associated activities are still allowed during lockdown.
1: Confirm your moving date
Once the legalities are out of the way, you’ll need to know when your completion date is so that you can begin making arrangements for moving vans and having your appliances installed. Your moving house completion date is the final step, when you’ll legally be the owner of your property, so once you have this date in place, you can focus on getting all of your belongings moved efficiently.
2: Giving notice if you’re currently renting
If you’re renting a property while waiting for your purchase to complete, you’ll need to provide notice to your landlord or managing agent. If this is your first time moving house, notice letter templates can be helpful to guide you through the details you need to include and the format to follow.
3: Who to tell when you’re moving home
Even if you use a mail redirection service, it’s still important that you tell companies with whom you have accounts that you’re moving. If you’re unsure who to tell when moving house, it’s a good idea to make a list prior to your move-in date, so that you ensure everyone who needs to be informed will be.
Government & Legal Companies
When it comes to who to inform when moving house, legal companies and government organisations are top of the list. This includes:
- Updating your address on your driving license & vehicle registration
- HMRC depending on your employment status
- TV licensing
- Local council
- Electoral roll
Financial Service Providers & Banks
Your bank, credit card companies and loan providers all need to be informed of your new contact details, particularly for any current accounts and credit cards you have as the address for these may be used to run security checks or for identity verification. If you have any investment accounts or pensions, the providers of these also need to be contacted.
If you have insurance, you should notify each provider when and where you’ll be moving. You should also check which of your items are insured during the move, as you may need additional insurance to cover your belongings. You should inform providers for insurance policies for:
- Your home such as building and contents insurance providers
- Car insurance companies
- Mobile phone insurance companies
- Life insurance companies
- Private health insurance companies
- Pet insurance companies
Let your utility providers know the date you’ll be moving so that they can close off your account – it’s also a good idea to take photographs of all your meter readings so that you have evidence of what they were on the day you moved out and into your new home. You will need to contact your electricity and gas providers, as well as your water supplier.
Get in touch with any companies that you pay regular bills to, such as your broadband and cable TV provider, mobile phone contracts, your home phone, magazine subscriptions and any gaming or streaming services.
Health Care Services
You will need to let your healthcare services know that you’re moving, such as your doctor, dentist and optician. You should also register with your new GP as far in advance as possible to prevent any delays to accessing healthcare, should you need it.
Employers & Schools
Your employer will need to know your new address, and if you’re in education or you have children who are of school age, you will also need to let those institutions know. This is particularly important if you are listed as an emergency contact for your children.
Ensure that any subscriptions you’re signed up to are aware that you’re moving and have your new contact details – this includes:
- Magazine subscriptions
- Streaming services
- Gym memberships
- Sports club memberships
- Charitable donations
If you have pets and they are microchipped, you should also update the details with their microchip database company. Likewise, if they are signed up to any pet care health plans with their vet, you should ensure this is updated too.
Friends & Family
With the businesses and organisations all informed, it’s finally time to tell your friends and family your new address and where they can reach you once you move in. While your immediate family will be aware that you’ve moved, your extended family and acquaintances may not, so make sure you update all that need to know where you’ve moved to.
4: Get your post redirected
Accounts and subscriptions to different services can quickly build up when you’re living somewhere, especially if you’ve been living there for a long period of time. An easy way to streamline the process and ensure that everything is sent to your new home is to set up a redirection with the Post Office.
You can use the Post Office’s online service which will take you through how to redirect your post when moving house. It can take up to 10 days to be actioned and you can choose a 3, 6 or 12-month redirection, to ensure that any stray post that you haven’t dealt with will end up in the right place.
5: Decluttering and getting ready to move
It’s easy to underestimate how long packing up your belongings will take you, so the earlier you can start the better. The best guidance when it comes to how to pack when moving is to start with the non-essentials first – these can be packed away weeks before your moving date, without impacting your everyday life too much. It can also be a good idea to consider the logistic process of moving, such as where larger items like kitchen appliances and furniture will go ahead of your move, so you’re not trying to work out the layout on moving day.
One of the things people struggle with when it comes to how to get ready to move is finding space for all of the belongings they’ve accumulated over the years, and you may be wondering how to declutter your home before moving.
Prior to moving day, it can be a good idea to really consider whether you need to take certain items with you to your new property. You’ll no doubt find things that you forgot you had or that you no longer need as you begin to pack items into boxes, so now is the time to donate them or sell them on.
6: How to hire a local removal company
Unless you have a small property or buying your first home, it’s likely that using a removal company will make the moving process easier. Moving boxes, heavy appliances and furniture in and out of a property can be incredibly tiring and time-consuming – not to mention there’s a risk that fragile items will get broken if they’re not packed and transported properly.
When moving house removal costs are something that you need to consider, as they vary from business to business. It’s worth getting a few different quotes from removal companies to gauge how much you can expect to pay, and to make sure you’re getting a good deal.
This is particularly important if there are factors that can impact the price, such as restricted access or multiple floors to the property. Always remain honest about the number of boxes you anticipate the company needing to move and the appliances and furniture you own, as well as the contents of any garages, sheds and loft spaces in the property.
Choosing a reliable removal service is critical – many people have been caught out by untrustworthy businesses who don’t take the appropriate care over your belongings. There are a few questions you can ask to check whether you’re dealing with a dependable firm.
- Firstly, check with the business if there is a pre-move survey to confirm how many items you need moving – there should be no fee for this. You should also ask whether the staff are trained in removals and who they are trained by. A reliable company will be members of a trade association such as the British Association of Removers, which will provide peace of mind on the day of the move.
- You should also ask to see details of their removals insurance policy and whether or not you’ll need to supplement this insurance if you have items that aren’t covered.
When you’ve chosen the firm you want to work with, it can be beneficial to send them a brief of what you’ll need moving, including any difficult-to-move items, like large items of furniture, as well as things that need to be dismantled, carpets and curtains, antiques or delicate items.
7: What to do after you’ve moved in
The first thing to do once you’ve moved in and have moved the boxes and furniture into the rooms where they’ll be staying, is to take a good look around the property. Identify anything that needs fixing and make a note so you can tackle those jobs as soon as possible.
You should also locate where the important things are, from fuse boards to electricity outlets and your water supply.
Locate where the important things are
Locate the stopcock as a priority so you can quickly and easily turn off the water coming into your property if there’s an emergency.
Appliance connection points
You’ll now have your appliances in the correct rooms but check that the layout you have planned will work with regards to the connection points you have available.
Gas & Electricity meters
Taking care of your utilities is a priority when you’re moving home and into a new property, so find out where your meters are situated and take the readings immediately. This way you can contact your energy providers and let them know the initial readings – helping you avoid the risk of overpaying on your first bills.
Thermostat and Boiler
Locate where your thermostat and boiler are and ensure that they are working correctly.
Find where the fuse box is so you can make sure everything looks normal and is working properly. If something looks like it may be faulty, call a certified electrician to come out and check it.