If you’re gearing up for a relocation, you’re far from alone. Though Americans used to live and die within a few miles of our birthplace, we now move an average of once every five years.
But whether you’re a veteran or a moving newbie, you’re probably aware of how stressful and complicated the moving process can be. Beyond the act of packing and unpacking, there are a lot of little details standing in the way of a successful relocation, and it can be hard to keep track of them all.
To help you keep your checklist straight, we’ve put together a list of the seven key steps to take for your relocation. Read on to learn how to get ready to move!
1. Sell Your Home
To move beyond daydreaming about your new home, you’ll need to sell your old one!
Depending on how much time and effort you mean to put into the transition, you can either go the traditional route by hiring a real estate agent or opt for an alternative.
A real estate agent can provide great help and insights on the home selling process, but a traditional home sale can take over 50 days to close—which can be too long if you need a fast relocation or you’re making an unexpected move.
Alternative options include making a short sale to your lender or simply transferring your mortgage to someone else. However, the most common alternative is selling for cash via a home-buying company, which can be done even with bad credit. If this sounds like an option for you, discover more about the process.
2. Get Organized
Once you’ve sold your home, it’s time to start the moving process. Any relocation will have a lot of moving parts, and it pays to get organized on the front end.
Consider investing a little time in the creation of a moving binder to keep everything in one easy and accessible place. Your moving binder should include all of the documentation and paperwork related to your move, as well as your moving checklists and to-do lists. You can also include your calendar or schedule to make sure every appointment is noted down where you can remember it.
3. Take Inventory of Your Home
Whether you’re moving to a new state or to the next street over, you’ll need to figure out what you need to move. If you have already created a home inventory for insurance purposes, your work will be a little easier. If not, take the time to account for everything you own.
You’ll use your inventory when you contact moving companies, as it can give them a good understanding of what you’ll need. You’ll also use it when shopping for homeowners’ insurance once you’ve made your move.
4. Get Your Finances in Order
Now is the time to plan your moving budget. This should take into account the cost of hiring professional movers or renting a moving truck. Get quotes from multiple companies, using the inventory above, to find the best price.
You’ll also need to consider the types of common purchases you’ll need to make when moving into a new home. Don’t forget to include things like building fees, if you’re moving into an apartment, as well as groceries and a professional house cleaning.
If you can, make sure to tuck away some extra cash as a safety net. You never know what hidden costs can crop up during your move!
5. Sort Through Your Belongings
With your inventory in hand, it’s time to create a plan of attack for when moving day gets closer. Go through each room of your house to decide how to pack away the belongings inside.
Take note of time-consuming spaces, like overfilled closets, garages, and basements. You should also note any objects that will need special packing or moving services, like a piano or fragile artwork.
This is also a great time to trash, sell, or donate old clothes and unused belongings. After all, there’s no sense in paying for movers to transfer things you don’t actually need!
6. Tackle the Smaller Details
Though your relocation will require a lot of physical boxing and packing, you’ll also need to take care of a few logistical details that will smooth your way forward.
If you haven’t already set a moving date with your local movers, be sure to do so. Otherwise, make sure to rope in a few helpful friends to help you do it yourself!
Next, arrange for your mail to be forwarded to your new address. To do this, you’ll need to head to the USPS website to note the transition.
You’ll also need to disconnect utilities, including your gas, electricity, trash, and cable companies. With most companies, you can do this in advance by informing them of your moving date. You’ll need to do the same with your homeowners’ insurance as well.
Last, make sure to gather all of the packing supplies you’ll need as you start the moving process. This should include boxes and tape as well as bubble wrap and labels.
7. Schedule Some “You” Time
Moving is a stressful process, and it’s easier to lose track of the little details if you run yourself ragged. As moving day approaches, make sure to schedule some time to engage in simple practices that ease stress and anxiety. From spending time with friends to practicing yoga to getting some exercise, let yourself rest and recover from the strain!
Know How to Get Ready to Move
As you prepare to make the transition to your new home, these key tips can help you understand how to get ready to move. Keep them in mind as you plan your way forward, and don’t forget to stay calm and organized as you go for a less stressful move.
For more of the essential guides you need for real estate and beyond, check out our other helpful posts!