It may seem like there’s a never-ending list of things to do when you’re moving house - but breaking everything down into manageable chunks and spreading the work over the course of a few weeks can make a world of difference.
Timing and doing things in the right order will help a lot too. Pack away plates and cookware too early and you’ll be left with some awkward mealtimes, but on the other hand you don’t want to discover a load of junk in the loft the day before you move!
Make sure any services you’ll need, like van hires, are booked well in advance of the big day, and try to leave extra time wherever possible – even the best-laid plans aren’t fool proof…
Follow our handy checklist to find out what to do and when.
Two months to move day
At this point, you've probably had your offer accepted and you'll be busy arranging a mortgage and conveyancing. Getting a completion date agreed, even a provisional one, will help give you a timeframe to work to.
This is a good time to start your preparations – there's no need to do too much just yet, but gradually getting rid of junk now will make packing up a smoother process in the weeks ahead.
- Book a day or two off work before, during and after the expected move date.
- Start de-cluttering – is there anything you can throw out or give to charity?
- If you have valuables covered by your home insurance, check if they'll be covered during the move.
- List all your large and bulky items like beds and furniture. Are they coming with you, and if not, how will you dispose of them?
- Inform your landlord of your move (if renting).
- Start a notebook where you can keep track of important dates, reference numbers and anything you’ve agreed with your sellers, buyers and agent.
Six weeks to move day
It may still feel so far away, but the move will come around sooner than you think! While this stage is still mostly about paperwork, you can start making preparations to move and packing away anything non-essential.
- Get quotes from removals companies.
- Decide what fixtures and fittings you're leaving behind and write them down - don't forget about these or your buyer won't be happy!
- Continue de-cluttering – use charity shops to get rid of unwanted books, DVDs, ornaments etc.
- Order cardboard boxes and packing materials.
- If you’re purchasing new carpets, furniture or white goods for your new place, order them now.
- Let your utilities company and home insurer know about your move date. Will insurance be in place from the day you arrive?
- Book storage space if you need to put bulky items somewhere secure for a while.
Three to four weeks to move day
By this point, you should mostly just have the things you're taking with you left in your home, and you might want to start boxing up anything you know you won't need in the next few weeks.
You should also have a completion date set by now, so you can book a removals company and start making firm plans for the move.
- Book a removals company. Use recommendations from friends and family if you’re having trouble finding one you trust. If you’re renting a storage unit
from us, we may be able to help you move free of charge!
- Arrange cleaners if you’re planning to have the house deep-cleaned after you leave.
- Start boxing up anything you won't need in the next couple of weeks – winter/summer clothing, spare plates and cutlery, bedding, ornaments etc.
- Clear out the loft, shed, garage etc.
- Let your utilities providers and home insurer know about your move date.
- Book hotel accommodation if needed during the move.
- Arrange transportation for pets and childcare if needed.
Two weeks to move day
The big day's approaching! Now's the time to start really packing – you can still leave your essentials out, but the more you can get done now, the better. Confirm all dates with your removals company and start letting everyone who needs to know about your move.
- Dismantle non-essential furniture and pack away.
- Start using up food from your freezer and cupboards – the less you need to take the better.
- Pack away as much as you can into boxes, labelled by room.
- Let your bank, credit card provider, local authority, TV license authorities etc. know about your move date – see a full list of who to inform here.
- Register for council tax at your new address.
- Arrange for professional disconnection of kitchen appliances.
One week to move day
With just a week to go, your packing should be nearly done and all your paperwork in order. Now it's time to really focus on getting everything packed – if you don't need it right now, box it or bin it.
- Pack away important documents (passports, house deeds, insurance documentation etc.) somewhere safe and easy to find.
- Dismantle and pack as much furniture as possible.
- Dismantle sheds/greenhouses if not leaving behind.
- Defrost the freezer.
- Wash, dry and pack all remaining clothing.
- Redirect your post to your new address.
- Start cleaning rooms.
- Drain fuel from lawnmower/motorbikes.
- Cancel local deliveries like newspapers.
- Safely dispose of any paints or hazardous chemicals you won’t be taking with you.
One day before move day
You might have a few nerves today and tomorrow – that's why it's important to use your last night in your old home to double-check everything's as it should be. Don't forget to get a good night's sleep!
- Make an essentials box – tea, coffee, milk, snacks, tools and cleaning equipment. Label it clearly and take it separately.
- Prepare plants for transit.
- Disconnect any light fittings you're taking with you.
- Check your fixtures and fittings list again – are you leaving behind everything you said you would?
- Do final cleaning.
- Double-check everything's packed up and ready to go.
On moving day
Moving day is never exactly easy, but if you're done everything else right, there shouldn't be too many hiccups today. It doesn't hurt to double-check times with your removal company first thing in the morning, and don't be afraid to tell them how you want everything to be loaded and unloaded.
- Strip bedding.
- Take down curtains.
- Check all windows and doors are locked and secure.
- Take final meter readings for water, electrics and gas (take a photo with your phone).
- Leave keys with your estate agent and collect your new keys.
- Guide the removals company to put boxes in the appropriate rooms.
- Check the boiler and hot water are working.
- Move in and enjoy your new home!
We are always happy to answer any questions about removals. Just contact us on 0800 051 7699 if you’d like to talk to us about moving house in any of the following areas:
Click now to find out more about our removals service.