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Preparing for Your Move

 A Comprehensive Moving Checklist

From choosing your moving company to settling into your new home, the following Move Planner Checklist will assist you in making sure that nothing is overlooked.  Starting early is key and will make the whole process much easier, allowing you plenty of time to consider requirements and contingencies that will ultimately make for a smoother move process for you. 

Six to Eight Weeks Before Your Move

  • Obtain in-home estimates for your move from at least three reputable moving companies that have been referred to you by friends and/or relatives.  Compare services/rates/charges and choose the moving company that offers you the best solution for your move.
  • Call your mover of choice to book your move, place your deposit and secure your preferred dates, services required and provide origin and destination details.  Review with your sales consultant any items that require special handling.
  • Create a "Moving" file folder with pockets to keep track of all your moving details and collect your receipts for move related expenses.
  • Start to use up things you can't move, such as frozen foods, liquids and cleaning supplies.
  • If you're moving at an employer's request, verify your moving budget and your responsibilities.
  • Obtain information about what moving expenses may be tax-deductible.
  • Make a list with three columns: items to leave behind, items for moving company to move, and items you'll move by yourself. For each item you are not going to take with you, decide whether you'll sell it, give it away to charity, or otherwise dispose of it before your move.
  • Make a list of everyone you need to notify about your move: friends, professionals, creditors, schools, subscriptions, etc.
  • Locate all motor vehicle registration and licensing documents.
  • Collect all your personal records (school, medical, legal, and accounting). Ask for referrals where possible.

Five Weeks Before Your Move

  • Submit a Change of Address form to the post office. (Canada Post)
  • Arrange special transportation for your pets and plants, if needed.
  • Arrange to Disconnect/Connect all utilities (gas, electric, oil, water, telephone, cable TV, and trash collection) at your old and new addresses. Ensure phone and utilities remain connected at your current home throughout your moving day. 
  • Plan a garage sale to sell unneeded items or arrange to donate them to charity.
  • If necessary make travel arrangements and reservations for your moving trip.  Make sure you aren't traveling on your move out or move in day.
  • Collect important papers (insurance, vehicle registration, wills, deeds, stock, etc.)

Four Weeks Before Your Move

  • If you're packing yourself, ask your moving company to deliver an assortment of boxes, this service should be free and you should only have to pay for the boxes you use. Start packing items you will not need to use until after your move. 
  • Create a floor plan of your new home and begin thinking about where you'll want to place furniture. Advance planning eases the stress of making major decisions when your furniture arrives at your new home. Mark and label specific pieces of furniture on your diagram and put it in your "Moving" file.
  • If you're moving out of or into a building with elevators, contact the building management to schedule use of the elevators and inquire about any other guidelines that must be followed.  If moving out of or into a home, is there ample room for the moving truck to park in front or next to the home without blocking traffic.

Three Weeks Before Your Move

  • Have your automobile serviced if you're traveling by car.

Two Weeks Before Your Move

  • If you're doing your own packing, it's time to get started. Label the contents of all boxes carefully.  Pack essential items together and write "Open First/Load Last" on these boxes. When you move into your new home, you'll be able to easily identify these boxes and find essential items. It's a good idea to let a professional mover pack any fragile and valuable items. That's what they do for a living and they have proven methods for keeping your items safe. 
  • Arrange to close accounts at your local bank and open accounts in your new locale.
  • Don't forget to withdraw the contents of your safety deposit box, pick up any dry cleaning, return rented videotapes, library books and items borrowed from neighbors, etc.
  • Drain gas and oil from power equipment (lawn mowers, snow blowers, etc.).
  • Given the many variables, the safe shipment of plants presents many problems to movers.  You will want to move these yourself or consider giving your plants to a friend or local charity.
  • Contact your sales consultant with any questions your might have.  Make sure to notify him/her should you add items to, or subtract items from, your planned household goods shipment or if there are any changes in the dates of your move.

One Week Before Your Move

  • Check back through your "Moving" file to make sure you haven't overlooked anything.
  • Prepare specific directions to your destination for your moving company. Make sure your sales consultant knows the phone numbers where you can be reached until you get into your new home.
  • Prepare a "Trip Kit" for moving day. This kit should contain the things you'll need while your belongings are in transit. Make sure to load your Trip Kit into your car to avoid it being loaded into the van by mistake.
  • Pack a box, preferably a lock box, of personal items that will include all your jewellery, cash and items of high value. Take this box in the car with you.
  • Call ahead to confirm the utilities are connected at your new home.

One Day Before

  • Defrost your freezer and refrigerator. Block doors open so they can't accidentally close on pets or children.
  • Have your major appliances disconnected and prepared for the move. (your sales consultant can help with arrangements for a third party to provide these services for front load washers, gas appliances/bbq's etc.)
  • Take down curtains, curtain rods and window coverings.
  • Contact your sales consultant to confirm arrival time of the moving van as well as to notify them of any last minute details.

Moving Day

  • Strip your beds, and make sure the bedding goes into a Load Last box.
  • Make sure that someone is at home to welcome your Van Foreman and his helpers.  It's important that an adult be authorized to take your place if you are unable to be present at any time while the movers are there. Let your sales consultant know to whom you have given this authority. Be sure that your chosen designate knows exactly what to do. Remember - this person may be asked to sign documents obligating you to charges.
  • Accompany the Van Foreman as he inventories and tags each piece of furniture with an identifying number. These numbers, along with a detailed description of your goods and their condition at the time of loading, will appear on the inventory. Read your Bill of Lading and Inventory carefully before you sign them. Keep these -- and all related papers -- in a safe location until all charges have been paid and all claims, if any, have been settled.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that all of your goods are loaded, so remain on the premises until loading is completed.  Make sure you do a walk through the home with the Van Foreman before he leaves, opening all closet doors and cupboards.

Move In Day

  • Review your floor plan to refresh your memory about where you want furniture and appliances placed.
  • Plan to be present when the moving van arrives. Be prepared to pay the mover before unloading. Have payment on hand for your moving charges. Unless other billing arrangements were made in advance, payment is required upon delivery in cash, by money order or certified cheque. Moving Companies do not accept personal checks.
  • One person should check the inventory sheets as items are unloaded. A second person should direct the movers as to where to place items.
  • Once all items are unloaded, unpack only what you need for the first day or two. Focus on creating a sense of home for your family.
  • Give yourself at least two weeks to unpack and organize your belongings.
  • Contact your sales consultant immediately should you encounter any damage that was not noted on the inventory sheets when the items where checked off into the house.
  • Contact your Sales Consultant and inform him/her of the level of Quality and Service you received during the moving process.

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