Direct Line magazine

Moving house: the ultimate checklist

Updated on: 22 May 2020

A living room full of moving boxes.

Moving house always hovers at the top of the list when it comes to stressful life events. Ask anyone who’s done it, and they’ll most likely agree.

So, we’ve created a handy guide to ease you through the process — from the moment you decide to move, until the day you settle into your new home.

2 months before

  • If you're renting, confirm your moving date with your current landlord.

  • If you're selling or buying, get all the legal bits and bobs in place early, including life insurance.

  • Check your home insurance - make sure it covers your move.

  • Get all your valuable possessions assessed for insurance.

  • If you're not covered, your removal company should be able to provide cover.

  • If you have kids, transfer their school records.

6 weeks before…

  • Make a full inventory of your possessions.

  • Decide what to take to your new home and where you’re going to put everything.

  • Start getting rid of things you no longer need. You can give them to charity, hold a car boot sale, or give them to your friends. Moving house is a great time for a good sort out.

  • Get removal quotes and references from local companies - check their cover limits.

  • If you're not using professional removers, ask friends and family to help.

  • Book extra storage space if required.

1 month before

  • Organise to have your new house professionally cleaned.

  • Don't forget to clear out lofts, sheds, storage rooms and outside spaces.

  • Notify utilities companies and switch home insurance to your new home address.

  • Change other relevant direct debits and standing orders.

  • Register at a new GP and dentist if you're moving out of the area.

  • Arrange for your post to be forwarded to your new address.

  • Send out change of address emails and messages to friends and family.

  • If you need furniture or carpets for your new home, order them now and arrange delivery for when you move in.

2 weeks before

  • Finalise all the important details with your removal company and estate agent; confirm times, contact numbers, parking and directions.

  • Arrange for child and pet care on your moving day – ask friends and family to help out.

  • Book additional services such as disassembling/reassembling furniture and un-plumbing the dishwasher if your removal company is not handling it .

  • Cancel local services and memberships and settle outstanding bills.

  • Go through your cupboards, fridge and freezer and make sure there's no food left before you move out.

1 week before

  • Arrange a time to collect the keys for your new home from the estate agent or new landlord.

  • Gather all the keys from your old home for the new owners or tenants.

  • Make arrangements to pay for your move. Ask for receipts of any deposits paid.

  • Defrost the fridge and the freezer – they should be completely empty and dry before moving.

On the day you move out

  • Take notes or photos of all utility meter readings for water, electricity and gas.

  • Make sure the removal team knows which boxes and items are fragile – use labels.

  • When the movers have completed packing, check your inventory again – if everything is accounted for, just sign and you're ready to go.

  • It’s a good idea to walk around the house for one final check.

  • Hand over all the sets of keys to the new owners or the estate agent.

  • Make sure all windows and doors are locked and utilities are switched off.

On the day you move in

  • Pop the kettle on, have some biscuits and enjoy a break with your friends, family and the removal team, before you start unpacking.

  • When you're ready, give instructions to the removal team on what needs to be moved and where.

  • Once again, account for each item on your inventory. Make sure you're happy with everything before the removal team leaves.

  • Did you read the utility meters? Write down details or take pictures.

  • Check you have all the keys you need.

  • Take a deep breath – you did it!

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