If you’re planning a move, you are probably feeling like an expert at creating checklists. There are so many tasks to consider, things that will need to be done, and boxes to pack. It can be overwhelming, especially if your move date is fast approaching. There may be some obvious steps to add to your to-do list, but there are also a few things that can often get overlooked. Today, we’ll highlight three things to add to your moving checklist, making sure you have everything covered before you load up.
What to Pack & What to Purge
Before you begin to assemble boxes and bust out the packing tape, you may want to think about purging a few things. In the end, decluttering can be a refreshing exercise that keeps you from moving unwanted or unused items from one house to the next. It’s a process that might benefit from a little strategy, too. Now is a great time to haul away anything that can be donated to a local charity, or set out as part of a moving themed garage sale.
Do a Walkthrough Evaluation of Your Things
Before you start sorting through your closet, it may be helpful to instead do a general walkthrough first. Organize a list, room by room, as you identify items that you no longer need or want to move to your new home. Breaking up the effort by room, and jotting down any obvious things worth purging, will help you be more methodical in your process. You can then begin one area at a time, which can be helpful to prevent overwhelming yourself.
Start with Anything in Storage
Whether you have an official storage unit, or an attic space full of old toys from your childhood, it can be helpful to start your purge or pack process there. The things you have tucked away, for holidays or sentimental value, can be easy to go through. Those items may already be packed and labeled, simplifying your decision-making process.
What Stays with the House
As you create your ultimate moving checklist, you may also want to consider carving out the things that should stay with your current home. For example, if your new home already has a refrigerator, there’s no need to move your existing home’s fridge. On the other hand, let’s say you bought a new ceiling fan, expressly to match your living room drapes. You may decide that the fan should come with you to the new house.
Changing Your Address
A critical box on your moving checklist is remembering to change your address wherever necessary. That in itself can require its own list, and here a few address changes to remember.
Friends & Family
Of course, you’ll want to reach out to friends and family and notify them of your move and change of address. You can easily drop a line to each via social media, for a quick way to check the to-do list box. Or you can send official moving notices by mail, maybe with pictures of your new home. Regardless of your preference for quick typing convenience, or more creative sentimental mail gestures, don’t forget to let the people you love know where you’re going.
Post Office, Memberships, & Accounts
You’ll want to contact your local post office and fill out any appropriate address change requests to make sure your mail delivers to your new home. It may also be helpful to enact a forward on any mail that may still find its way to your old address. You can discuss your move timeline with the post office clerks and get this ball rolling ahead of time. It could also be an ideal time to call all of your current credit cards or accounts to schedule the address changes with them. Don’t forget about any memberships, including gyms or extracurricular activities. They’ll need to know you’re moving too.
Driver’s License & Voter Registration
If you’re moving out of state, you’ll want to make a trip to the DMV once you get settled in your new home. You should be able to get a new driver’s license and license plate for your vehicle, usually with your current ID and perhaps a piece of corroborating mail. Be mindful that some states have deadlines for vehicle registration changes, although most will give you plenty of time to transition once you arrive at your new destination. It is also worth mentioning that once you’ve officially moved, you should consider finding your new designated polling place and make any changes to your voter registration.
Research & Find New Providers
Creating a moving checklist also means creating a list of new providers for life in your new area. If you’re moving across town, but within the same city, you might not need to make any significant changes. But if you’re changing zip codes, there are a few calls and inquiries to make now.
Utilities & Entertainment
It can be helpful to read reviews online or to ask for recommendations from social media contacts when it comes to selecting a reputable utility company. You’ll, of course, need water, electric, and trash services, but you may want to explore your options for television and internet services, as well. Be mindful of any deals that sound too good to be true, as they may expire and rope you into long term and expensive contracts.
New Health Providers
If your move is taking you to an entirely new city, you’ll want to connect with new providers for health-related services. Consider asking your current doctor or dentist for any referrals they may have in your new area. Before you move, you can be researching the best care options, and professionals, as well as calling to inquire if providers are taking new patients. You’ll want to do these calls before you move, so you can transfer any medical history or documents to your new provider before you leave.
Your move could mean you’re preparing for a qualifying life event, which is what insurance providers suggest qualifies you to make insurance plan changes outside normal enrollment periods. Out of state moves, and sometimes eligible student moves fall into this category, and can allow for up to 60 days to make plan selections. To know for sure, it may be best to contact your insurance provider now and explore new options if you’re authorized to do so. Choosing a new plan means you’ll want to reference that previous checklist of healthcare providers you already made, to ensure you’re finding in-network resources.
Moving can be a tedious process, in part because of all the tasks and to-dos on your moving checklist. You can find a balance, though, especially when you carve out priorities you can do before you move. Taking care of your health and healthcare options should be one of those top priorities. And if you find yourself with a qualifying life event, browse with us to help you find a new plan for your healthiest life in your new location.