Nationwide A to Z Moving Checklist

Nationwide Moving is one of the most dreaded tasks for many Americans. It often invokes fear, stress, and A LOT of questions that are often left unanswered until it’s too late.

Fortunately, moving across the country has been done numerous times before by successful people who know how to plan properly.

To help you in your quest for a smooth and hassle-free national move, here is a checklist of things to do together with the corresponding timeline:

  1. Two Months Before the Move

    • Define your budget. How much are you willing to spend for your move?
    • Create an inventory list. Sort your belongings into the following categories:
      • Things to keep and bring with you
      • Things to throw away
      • Things you can sell
      • Things to be donated to charity
    • Contact 9Kilo and get moving quotes from reputable moving companies
    • If moving long distances (interstate of international), gather and prepare all of your important documents:
      • Passport
      • Medical records
      • Dental records
      • Professional licenses
      • School Records
      • Bank records
      • Finance-related documents
      • Land titles, certificates of ownership, stocks, bonds, etc.
      • Pet licenses for pet owners
    • If you’re moving with kids, arrange for their school or day care transfer
    • Alert your insurance providers if you’re moving to a new state because this could affect your policy
    • Study the floor plan of your new home and start figuring out the function of each room
    • Make a list of everyone who needs to be informed about your move.
      • Family
      • Friends
      • Work and business contacts
      • Neighbors
      • Clubs, organizations and other affiliations
    • Start researching about your new city and community.
      • Do site visits
      • Conduct internet research
      • Ask your friends and family
  2. One Month Before the Move

    • Use up the items in your inventory that can’t be moved. This includes frozen food, bleach, aerosol cleaners, etc.
    • Stock up on boxes and packing supplies. You can either buy from suppliers and online stores, or ask your local grocery stores for extra boxes that they no longer need.
    • Start packing items that you don’t use often. For example: winter clothes, sports gear etc…
    • Call your moving company to clarify and reserve the moving date
    • File a change of address with the post office.
    • Arrange for the disconnection of the utility services at your old home. Schedule it to be done the day after your move. After doing so, ensure that the utilities for your NEW home are scheduled to be connected a day before you move in.
    • Conduct a garage sale for the things you no longer need. Earn some extra cash along the way.
    • Cancel your subscriptions from magazines, newspapers and such.
    • Return any borrowed library books or rented items.
    • Pick up dry cleaning and any items that are out for repair.
    • Get back the things you have out for lending.
    • Tune up your car. Get it serviced and repaired if needed. If you’re moving out of state, prepare to have your auto registration transferred.
    • If you are moving from or into an apartment, contact building maintenance and arrange for you to use the elevator (or service elevator if possible) on your moving day.
  3. Two Weeks Before the Move

    • Sort your finances in order. Contact your bank and arrange for your funds to be transferred. If this is not possible, consider closing your account. Remove any items you have secured in safety deposit boxes.
    • Notify your creditors about your change of address.
    • Confirm the travel arrangements for your family and your pets.
    • Empty your fridge more efficiently by planning your meals for your last week.
    • Create notes and important information for the new owner of your current house. E.g. Appliance warrantees.
    • Continue packing your things…
  4. One Week Before the Move

    • Remind important people about your move. (Use the same list above) Give them your new address and phone number.
    • By this time, you should already be finishing up on packing. Prepare a box of the things that you will need instant access to once your arrive at your new home. Include basic medication and toiletries. This box can be labelled as “last load” so that the movers won’t put this at the very back of the truck. That way after unloading, you can get this box easily.
    • Pack your suitcases and valuables separately.
    • Empty your motorized appliances such as gas grills, kerosene heaters and lawn mowers. You should also drain water hoses.
    • A day before moving, empty, defrost and clean out your refrigerator.
    • Pack the appliances you plan to move.
    • If travelling with children, start preparing for their schedule and care during moving day.
    • Contact your moving company to confirm all pickup and delivery arrangements.
  5. The BIG Moving Day

    • Be physically present during moving day. Aside from the fact that you need to sign documents, you also have to supervise the movers in terms of packing and loading.
    • Ensure that your items are loaded into an efficient order. Heavy items should be loaded at the bottom. Lighter items should be on top. Things that you will immediately use should be loaded last.
    • Go inside the house again and check every room, closet and cabinet one last time.
    • Take note of utility meter readings and ensure that you have a copy of your BOL or Bill of Lading. Review the BOL and make sure the delivery address and contact information are all correct.
    • Leave a note to your neighbours and to the new owners of your old home. Let them know of your new address so that they can forward any mail.
    • Keep a family member or friend informed of your plans so that they can contact you in case of emergencies.
    • Tip the movers to show your gratitude. Most customers base their tip on how satisfied they are with the overall performance of the movers. There is no base rate but most people give tips of $10 to $30 per mover. Make sure to hand it over to each person directly.
    • Check that Movers filled inventory well. Check if everything was loaded into the truck. During unloading, you should also check to see if everything was delivered safely to your new home.
  6. After the Move

    • Make yourself comfortable first and immediately open the box you prepared earlier containing your basic essentials, toiletries and clothes for the first few days.
    • Call your family (or friends) and let them know that you arrived safely into your new home.
    • Sort the boxes into their designated rooms and unpack them systematically to avoid confusion.
    • Say hello to your new neighbours. Get tips about living in your new area.
    • Find the essentials. Go out and find sources for your basic needs. Drive or walk around town and take note of the nearest:
      • Supermarket
      • Pharmacy
      • Clinic
      • Bank / ATM
      • Post office
      • Gym
      • Park, and so on…
    • Personalize your house and make yourself at home. Display personal items like photo frames and decorations. Make your new house feel familiar.
    • Setup play dates. For parents with children, help your kids adjust to the new surroundings by introducing them to new friends. It’s also a great way for you to get to know the parents.
    • Take your time. You spent about two months in preparation and packing so don’t rush the unpacking and settling process. Just be patient and don’t force yourself to love your new place right away. After a few weeks, you’ll eventually settle into a routine and get comfortable with your new home and surroundings.

While it is true that national moving can be tricky and extremely tedious, with a bit of planning and careful organization, you’ll be able to go through it without a glitch. Thousands of Americans successfully relocate each year and if you follow the tips mentioned above, you can surely make the most of it too.

At 9Kilo.com it is our mission to help you make the most out of your relocation. For any questions or concerns, feel free to browse around our website. Or better yet, contact us today and fill out a form so we can help you get started with your move.

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