Moving to a New Home?

You finally found your new home after considerable searching and are excited to move in. Now is the time to organize your belongings and move them into your new home. Moving can be overwhelming, but with proper planning, it can be a stress-free experience.

  • Make a detailed checklist.  Smart moving preparation should start with a checklist that can make your move cheaper, easier and faster.
  • Keep a moving file. A moving file will hold all the information you need for your move, with everything from moving companies’ price quotes to receipts.
  • Inventory possessions. Make an inventory of all household items to be moved, especially in places where there may be considerable items such as the basement or attic.
  • Get moving company quotes. Get several quotes from moving companies and ask what is included in the price and what is not. Ask about coverage for damaged items. Standard moving company insurance usually pays only a percentage of broken items. Full value protection will cost more, but may be worth the added expense if you are moving fragile and valuable items.
  • Get rid of items you don’t need.  Plan a garage sale or donate items you don’t need to a charity. Charities are in need of usable household items and clothing. Donating will also allow you to claim a tax deduction.
  • Start a filing system.  Invest in an accordion folder, file box or fireproof safe. Rent a safe deposit box for vital records, such as your deed, mortgage note and will. Keep separate folders for tax files, including tax returns, receipts, property tax documents, and one for all your new home product warranties and instruction manuals.
  • Packing for the move.  Start packing two to three weeks before the move, one room at a time. You can save money by getting boxes from local stores. Be sure to have adequate markers, labels and tape on hand. If the moving company is packing for you, they will usually arrive one to two days before the move. You should supervise this phase of the move. The movers are the experts in handling the antiques and fragile items. They can provide you with special cartons for clothing, dishes mirrors and mattresses. They will not transport plants or flammable items.
  • Packing electronics.  It’s best to pack computers, printers stereos and other electronic equipment in their original boxes if you have them. If not, wrap the components in plastic to protect them from dust and place them in a sturdy box, marked “Fragile”.  Since tapes, CDs and floppy disks can e damaged by heat, arrange for their safe shipment or take them with you, along with your other valuable items and legal documents.
  • Make a floor plan.  Create a simple floor plan for your new home so that the movers can place furniture and beds where you want them.  Discuss the inventory checklist with your mover. The inventory record is one of your most important shipping documents. You will need to refer to it at your destination and will be asked to sign it again after you have received and inspected your goods.
  • Keep needed items handy. Pack as if you are going to stay in a hotel for a week of so. Each family member should have their own easily identified suitcase, filled with necessary clothing and personal items. Also, pack a box with some bedding, eating utensils and cooking items. With careful planning, you should be able to survive comfortably amid the boxes for a week or two.

Eventually, all of the boxes will be unpacked, all of your belongings will be in their proper places, and you will be able to relax and enjoy your new home.

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