Buying a new home is one of the best parts about homeownership and moving is… well, um… probably one of the worst. But, it doesn’t have to be. We all know that moving can be tedious, exhausting and a true feat of its own but with the right preparation, you can tackle it like a pro. Here’s our ultimate guide to moving made just for you, and probably the only one that you’ll ever need.
8 Weeks Out
What an exciting time — you’ve bought your new home, signed the papers, and now it’s time to figure out the logistics of how you’re going to move.
- Start with researching moving companies in the area. Consult with family and friends who have recently moved and may be able to recommend a company that’s reliable and in your budget. To start your search, check out PODS or 1-800-Pack-Rat.
- If you’re moving to a new area, research doctors, schools and banks ahead of time. Set up new customer profiles, school enrollments and accounts to allow for a smooth transition.
- Talk to your internet, TV and utility providers in advance about setting up services in your new home. No one wants to have to go days without being able to browse the web or watch Netflix.
- Create a list of businesses that you’ll need to contact to change your address when the time comes. Remembering to forward your mail to your new home is number one.
- Organize all of your forms and moving-related documents in one master binder. This way, everything is in one place and you’ll never have to run around the house looking for loose paperwork.
- Request time off from work during the week of your move and make arrangements with a nanny, your family or your friends to watch the kids.
6 Weeks Out
Now that your preliminary research and organization is done, it’s time to get the ball rolling on preparing for your move. Gather supplies, start sorting your belongings and pack room by room.
- Weigh your options and decide on a moving company that you feel comfortable with and doesn’t break the bank. Ask about moving coverage just to prepare for unforeseen damages to belongings or breaks.
- Assess your belongings room by room, and identify what to keep and what to give away.
- Donate unwanted items to your local charity, sell them online or host a garage sale.
- Don’t scramble to gather the supplies that you need at the last minute — take a trip to your local hardware store to collect the boxes, tape and other equipment that you need. If you’d like to be a bit more eco-friendly, there are options to rent reusable boxes instead.
- Begin packing items that you know you want to keep, but don’t use as frequently. Holiday accessories, items stored in the basement or seasonal clothing is a good starting point.
- For bigger items that you want to hold onto but don’t have the space for in your new home, reserve a storage unit in advance.
4 Weeks Out
You’re only a month away from moving into your new home. Now that you’ve sorted your belongings, it’s time to complete the bulk work and pack up your home.
- Refrain from stocking up on groceries for the next few weeks. You want to use what’s in your freezer, refrigerator and pantry as best you can.
- Make a packing schedule for yourself so that you know what needs to be completed each day in order to stay on track. Make it a team effort and speed up the packing process by assigning tasks to family members, or asking friends to come over and assist.
- Establish a specific box-labeling system so that there’s no issue identifying which boxes are housing what. You can colour-code, use numbers or labels.
- Create a master list with an inventory of what’s been boxed so that there’s no questioning whether certain items were packed or misplaced.
- Pack family heirlooms or expensive jewelry separate from what you’ll be loading into the truck. Transport these items by hand or via a trackable shipping service instead.
Two pro packing tips:
- The heavier the item, the smaller the box.
- If boxes aren’t full, stuff them with paper. Boxes that aren’t filled aren’t stackable and allow items to move around.
2 Weeks Out
This is the final stretch — in two weeks, you’ll be moving into your new home. Take this time to get last minute things in order.
- Confirm that your address has been changed, and that new accounts and services have been set up.
- Schedule utilities to be turned off in your current home one day after you move out.
- Make sure that each member of the household packs a suit case filled with their necessities (2 weeks’ worth of clothes, toiletries, medications, electronics, etc.)
- Dispose of flammable items like chemicals, paint and aerosol cans.
- Clean out your fridge and kitchen cabinets. Donate perishables or box them up. Everything else needs to be placed in a cooler or thrown out.
- Confirm moving dates and times with anyone that you’ve booked services with.
- Establish an area in your home where you can group together keys, garage door openers and remotes for the new owners of your home. If further instruction is required, put it in writing and leave them a note.
- Give your home a clean as best as you can before its new residents arrive — it’s the respectful thing to do.
- Take photos of your empty home. You want to be able to prove that it was in good condition before you left, just in case you need to.
Moving with Pets
If you’re moving with a pet, here’s how to make them feel comfortable in their new home:
- Walk your furry friend around the neighbourhood a few times before moving in so they get a feel for where they are.
- Once you and your pet move into your new home, make sure that you unpack some of their toys. This way, they have something that’s familiar to them in a brand new setting.
- Try to keep to routine as much as possible — make sure that they’re going to the bathroom, eating, walking and sleeping at the same time that they were in their old home so that they know what to expect and aren’t thrown off.
- If there’s another pet that they’ve been used to seeing, perhaps a friend’s or a family member’s, bring them over as much as possible. Having a furry friend that they know can help comfort them throughout the moving process.
- Overall, be patient and give them some extra attention and love — just like this move is new for you, it’s an adjustment for them too.
Looking for a new home to move into? Explore our communities today and find the home that fits perfectly with you.
Moving with Kids
You may be a seasoned veteran when it comes to moving, but when you add kids into the equation, moving into a new house becomes a new feat entirely. Here are five tips that will bring you a step closer to achieving a stress-free move with kids.
- Getting ahead on packing will set your move up for success and will mitigate stress as your moving date approaches — you can involve your children in this process, too. First, explain to them why you’re packing and what’s to come, as well as that their items and belongings will only be packed for a short period. It’s important to communicate the changes that are to come early on.
- Take advantage of the time you have away from your children — during nap time, play dates, or when they’re being watched by grandparents. If your kids are in school, try to schedule your move while they’re in class or at daycare. This will help you manage the priorities of your move, without your kids as a distraction.
- As it nears closer to your moving date, it’s important to pack all of your essential belongings last — your toiletries and chargers, as well as your children’s favourite toys. Packing essentials separate from other items will allow for a more seamless transition upon move-in.
- Keeping to a normal routine will help your children become adjusted to their new home environment quicker. Set your children’s rooms up with their bedding, toys and favourite belongings prior to them spending their first night in the new house. Having familiar items around them will help make them feel more comfortable in the space, and will increase the chances of them having a sound first night. Just in case they do wake from their slumber, be sure to explain where your bedroom is located so that they feel comfortable coming to you in the middle of the night if they need to.
- Upon arriving to your new home, mark the celebratory occasion with a cake or with a little present for your kids. These small gestures will help excite your children about starting life afoot in their new home.