Having moved from a 3 bed flat (with garage and no storage) into a 3 bed house with lots of storage (but thankfully all build in wardrobes!) and a garage plus an attic less then 2 years ago my mind is still fresh on that chaotic 2 weekend move with no childcare and a short deadline to clean up the flat ready to hand over the keys to the new owner. This time I am going in way more prepared so I have a stress free (as possible as that might even be) moving time into our new house! It didn’t all go to plan because our completion day was moved back a week but I did plan for hiccups like this along the way so we still had 3 weeks until the Check Out appointment for our rented property to get it painted and cleaned throughout!
Before you start the packing process its helpful to start writing a list of all the companies you need to inform before/shortly after you are moving. On the top of the list would be your Home Phone & Internet Provider which need to be notified preferably up to 4 weeks before the big move so they have time to switch you over to the new house! Utility Companies like Gas, Electrics & Water Suppliers need to be informed of the change of name (if you are moving out of a rental the Landlord will take over that bit thank god!)
Then there are banks, doctor surgery, dentist, optician,loyalty cards, electoral roll, library, Ebay, Paypal, children’s trust funds, TV Licence, your employee, Social Security, Inland Revenue, DVLA, insurances and breakdown and lastly an email to all your contacts that you have moved and details of your new address.
Redirect your Post: You can get post redirected for three, six or 12 months, and longer if you’re still getting volumes of post through after your initial period is up. It costs from £31.99 (for three months) per surname, so couples may need to pay twice. It was a godsend for me the last time although various parcels have been lost due to being send to me in my blog name and the new owner and his tenants proved to be never reachable, it gave me the time to change things I forgot on my list.
What you need for packing up your home:
Now the obvious thing would be boxes of all sizes, small, medium, large, heavy-duty ones and wardrobe boxes. I would add all of my (rather large collection of) IKEA Bags onto that list too! You will always need more boxes then you expect I finished packing went to the toilet and realised the bathroom stuff hasn’t been boxed yet!! So the day before moving day I went to my local supermarket to ask for some banana boxes!
Also get a box ready for bits like: Labels (A4 Printing Paper cut in half does the job for me), Packing Tape Dispenser (if you don’t have one yet, get one there ace!!), Scissors, Marker Pens, Bubble Wrap and plenty of old newspaper.
Start packing early! No joke you don’t realise how much there will be to pack and how much you actually can life without when starting the packing process! Start with rooms/items you least need for example stuff like winter/summer clothes, christmas decorations, suits, dresses and smart clothes (because lets face it you wont go to a ball anytime soon before the big move!), dvd’s, books,…
Pack most of the kids toys and leave them out 2 boxes full of their favourite bits (believe me they wont miss all the thousand other toys and will be like a kid in a candy store when it’s all unpacked in a few months/weeks on the other end!
Label your boxes in different Categories plus which floor they go to! Kitchen Bedroom (1st Floor) Livingroom and use different colours also number them on a different sheet with more details what is inside I.e. Cutlery, bowls, plates…. make sure you put the label on the side so it can be read when they all stacked up! I also done a list of which colour goes to which room plus little labels on the makers itself and for the moving day I will make some A4 labels for each room with the correct colour so the moving guys know exactly which box is going in which room:
IF you have the spare space in a bedroom, utility room etc. label some non urgent boxes (containing dvd’s picture frames, office supplies etc) to be put in the spare room to be sorted after the essential boxes are unpacked.
DECLUTTER – I have done a pre KonMarie before I even started packing in the house and a separate session in the garage & attic and I got rid of all of my books (charity shop), baby toys stored (and forgotten about) in the garage as well as all of our DVD’s (bar the kids ones) and CD’s. I made about 35£ using Ziffit and Music Magpie (every little helps right?)
Don’t overfill the boxes, you don’t want them to “explode” on the moving day when they get carrier into the van/house.
Before the Moving Day arrives:
Research your moving company READ reviews ASK your friends, family or on local selling sites and get a few quotes in! Once you booked them, get in contact with the Company 2 weeks before the moving day to confirm that its defiantly booked (you might even want to get it in writing just to be sure!). Don’t forget to ask what is exactly included in their services and what is insured regarding accidental damage.
Now this is each to their own but I have arranged to get Quotes from cleaners for a deep clean (for our rented property as well as the new house), oven cleaners, gardeners, professional carpet cleaners (our rental contract states we have to show an invoice before handover day) as well as painters (once again for the rental property which we received with freshly painted walls as well as for the new house to have it all painted). I decided to treat myself to all of these professional workers coming to me and doing the work for me because next to the kids and relocation nearly 2 hours away I have enough on my plate and don’t want to worry that we might lose out on getting our deposit back due to it not being up to standard for our Landlord. I did debate a lot about getting a painter for our new house because once again its a ton of money BUT I know if I don’t have it done before we move in I will be stuck with the terracotta orange for quite a long time and even though we wont be able to afford or have the time to decorate all of the rooms straight away its nice to have at least a fresh lick of paint everywhere so we can put our own stamp on it in due corse.
Order a food shop for the day after you moved in so you can start cooking again and have your essentials in the house and don’t have to hunt down a shop the next day.
The night before the Moving Day:
Pack a suitcase with water, snacks, spare clothes, phone chargers, PJ’s, kids comforters, dummies, nappies, toothbrushes and all the other essentials you need for the first night in your new home and make sure you out the suitcase in your own car and not in the moving van just in case of delays.
Prepare a Kitchen Essential Box with the Kettle, Mugs, Spoons, Sugar, Tea, Coffee, Napkins and Paper plates, Loo Rolls (no joke!) and of course don’t forget the biscuits for the Packers!!
REMEMBER to have food in the fridge on the moving day itself to feed the troops! My mum packed everything away (yep I forgot to tell her about the above essential box! So there was no sugar for their teas! Oops!
On the Moving Day:
Ask a friend or family member to take the kids out for the day or even let them have a sleepover the night before. But make sure to include the children in the moving process because there are plenty of memories to have had in the house for them and they will miss it. Even after nearly 2 years in our rental house he is still asking when we can go back to our flat because it was so much fun there. Once our contract was signed and we choose the right nursery/school for the children we took Finn out of school for the day (with permission of the Headmaster) to drive to Bournemouth to show him his new home as well as his new school and the nearby playground so he can get exited about the move. We had a “Goodbye House” sleepover in the front room with the kids (movies and popcorn included!) and created a “…. more sleeps until we move” Calendar.
Flatten some cardboard boxes and lay them down in the hall way to protect your flooring in the new house.
If you have enough helpers ask them to build your beds on the moving day (and make the bedding so its ready for the night ahead) which means especially for the kids they can sleep in their own bed and have a little bit of comfort in a new to them environment and it saves you from living out of suitcases, boxes when it comes to clothes. It’s also saver when moving with smaller children to not have lots of large wardrobe or bed pieces leaning against the wall when they run around exploring their new home!
Check that you have lightbulbs in the new house, you don’t want to end up moving in the dark!
If you are buying a house get it DEEP CLEANED, believe me even though the sellers might have cleaned or brushed the floor but it still will be filthy and believe me the last thing you want to do is spending your first few days in your new house cleaning the mess left behind from the previous owners.
Dont forget to take the Meter readings on the day you are exchanging keys and send a picture or a text to your Landlord and keep it for the record.
Well that’s all for me I hope the list will come in handy! If you are about to move GOOD LUCK! Or have you moved house recently and got a tip I have not mentioned? Please do let me know!