Moving Checklist to Keep You Sane While Relocating

woman with moving boxes and clipboard

Whether you are relocating across the country or just across town, moving can be stressful. There is so much to do, so many things to remember, it’s easy to lose track of a lot of it. Planning ahead is the key to keeping your sanity during a move, and a moving checklist will keep you focused, prevent you from becoming overwhelmed, and ensure nothing gets overlooked.

The great thing about a moving checklist is how versatile it is. Wherever you’re moving, whether to a rental or a home of your own, a new apartment checklist is pretty much the same as a checklist for moving into a house. Though you should start planning for the move as far in advance as possible, the last two weeks before moving day is when most of the action happens. You’ll need to be ready to vacate one home and move into another. More than ever, a checklist for moving will come in handy to make sure the move goes smoothly.

2 Weeks Before Moving Day

Moving checklist at 2 weeks

There’s nothing like moving to get you organized. As soon as you knew that you would be moving–long before the 2-week mark–you should have been able to start packing the things you don’t use frequently. This provides the opportunity to toss out or donate items you never use and to pack away things you don’t use often, but still want to hold onto. About 2 weeks out, those things can go into self storage so you don’t have to schlep them to your new home. Bonus: It’ll reduce the clutter of household items that you do need and want to take with you.

There’s packing to be done at every part of a moving checklist. When you’re 2 weeks away from the big move, you’ll start to pack items you needed access to up until that point, such as bedding and linen, dishes and cookware, and clothing. Only leave out what you will absolutely need over the next two weeks, and pack everything else away in boxes, bags, and suitcases.

  • Clean House
    Two weeks before moving day is the time to start cleaning the house. This is easier to do while you pack because you can clean as you move things into storage and stow other items in boxes to be moved to your new home.
  • Pack Non-Perishables
    Box up non-perishable food items, but leave them in the kitchen where you can get to them for the next couple of weeks.
  • Clear Out the Fridge
    Use up perishable food and getting the fridge cleared out.
  • Dispose of Flammable Items
    Properly dispose of hazard waste items like gasoline, propane, and paint.
  • Schedule the Transfer or Cancellation of Services
    Electricity, oil or propane service, newspaper delivery, lawn care, cable and internet, and housecleaning need to be cancelled and changed over. Don’t for get any subscription services.
  • Change Your Address
    Submit a change of address to the post office and businesses such as your bank and credit card companies.

1 Week Before Moving Day

box of essentials - moving
It’s crunch time when you are down to 1 week before moving day. You’ll mostly be living out of boxes and suitcases and be taking care of the last few details on you moving checklist before the actual move.

  • Finish up moving things designated for storage into a storage unit, or, at least confirm the self-storage details and get as much stored away as you can.
  • Confirm your moving details with the moving company to ensure everyone is on the same page, and make arrangements for picking up the truck if you haven’t hired movers to help you.
  • Disassemble furniture and store hardware such as nuts, bolts, and screws into a re-sealable plastic bag so nothing gets lost. Keep the bags of hardware attacehd to the items the beling to. Label the bags in case they get separated.
  • Thoroughly clean the refrigerator and defrost the freezer during the last week before you move.
  • Put together a moving day kit that includes small tools such as a screwdriver, tape, and a pair of pliers as well as other essential things that will come in handy like a pen and pad of paper, snacks, and bottles of water.
  • Group items together that you yourself will be moving, so they don’t get put on the truck on moving day. 

The Day of the Move

Moving checklist 0 week

If you planned ahead and stuck to your moving checklist, most things will have been taken care of by moving day. Still, there will always be a few items on any moving out checklist that will need to be done the day of the move. If you didn’t pick up the truck the night before, you should plan on getting it as early as possible on moving day. Load items into your vehicle that you will be transporting, then get everything else onto the truck.

  • Take an inventory of things as they go out of the house.
  • Do a final walk-through of the empty place to make sure nothing gets left behind.
  • Turn off lights and lock windows as you go, and be sure to lock the house before you leave.

A new home checklist is also part of any moving plan, and it includes things you’ll need to do at your new home the day you move in.

Moving Checklist - new place

  • Make sure all the utilities have been hooked up and are running, things like water, electricity, and heat.
  • Even if the place was cleaned before you moved, you might want to vacuum the floors, at least in the areas where furniture will go.
  • Unload the moving truck, putting boxes and furniture in the rooms they belong in, but don’t worry about arranging things or unpacking, yet.
  • Double check everything against your inventory list to ensure it all arrived safely.
  • Assemble the beds first, including making them up with bedding.
  • Unpack the kitchen next then the bathroom, and then move on to the other rooms.

About the author

The Storage Queens

We know a thing or two about moving. Together, we share the best tips in organizing, storage, navigating your city, and more!

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