Moving to a new house is widely considered one of the most stressful challenges you’ll encounter in life. For this reason, it is vitally important you take every step possible to make your move as painless as possible. And when it comes to finding out the best tips, what better source than a removals and storage company with decades of experience?
Anthony Ward Thomas’s essential home moving guide aims to take away a lot of the hassle. This blog provides you with a moving timetable of key timeline milestones that you can consider before moving. We’ll also go one step further by providing actionable tips and websites to visit for more information to help your move run smoothly.
2 Months – Before the Move –
“Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”, as the saying goes, and this holds some truth when it comes to moving house too. The first couple of tips involve nothing more than picking up the phone or sending an email. You should book some time off work for a couple of days around the move date to give you some breathing space and then arrange (if applicable) the transfer of any school, work, and medical records for the family, respectively.
It is also wise to have a spring clean to help you prioritise what is coming with you and what you can dispose of. Moving house is a chance for a fresh start, so clearing out many of your possessions can be incredibly therapeutic and rewarding. Not only that, but you can also make room for new purchases when you arrive.
Although sometimes difficult, a good way of helping you decide which items to keep and which to get rid of is to ask yourself, “Have I used/worn this item this year?” and if the answer is no, you should get rid of it. Clothes bins, car boot sales, second-hand shops, recycling points and online stores such as eBay are great ways of decluttering your house before a move.
6 Weeks – Before the Move –
Around 6 weeks before your move, you should be confirming the actual moving date with all parties involved (buyer and seller, lawyers etc.) You should contact a few removal companies at this time to give you the best chance of getting a good deal. If you plan to use a moving company, it is also a good start to think about which one suits your needs the most. Do you have expensive items to move or large household equipment? Your choice should match these needs.
You also need to ensure that your removal company is regulated and has the right insurance cover; this is very important as accidents can occur while moving home. You need to make sure you’re correctly insured.
It’s prudent to seek out quotes from any service provider you use, including removals. But remember to ask about their insurance, quality standards and online ratings. You can shop around but make sure you know what the package price covers and what it doesn’t. One of the most important factors when choosing your removals company is to check that the firm has suitable insurance cover for the value of your items.
Start packing up and declutter your outside spaces; the garden is always a good place to start, as it usually seems less daunting than the house. Clean the shed and garage, which will make space for boxes from the rest of the house to be stored until you move. Away from your home move, you may also need to consider other vital areas if you are moving jobs as well. Remember to let your employers know of your decision to give them as much time to find a replacement as possible.
4 Weeks – Before the Move –
When choosing your removal firm, make sure they are BAR accredited. This is the accreditation body that governs the removals industry. A company with a BAR register will give you peace of mind that a professional firm is in charge of your house move.
The pace begins to increase at this stage. Start collecting boxes and newspapers for storage and wrapping; shops, pharmacies, building sites, and schools are good sources for these. You will need to ensure your new home has all the communications running. And you will want phone and internet facilities in your new home to be set up as soon as possible, so now is the time to book that in with the relevant providers. It can take up to four weeks for broadband suppliers to set up a new account.
Start the daunting task of clearing out the loft now and decide how your larger furniture items are going to be moved – can you do it yourself, or will you need specific requirements? Pianos, grandfather clocks, etc., are going to need professional removal help with specialised equipment. Non-essential items should begin to be packed now, such as pots, pans, lamps, books, to name a few. Essential documents should also be collated into one space, including birth and marriage documents, academic qualifications, and sentimental items.
You also need to ensure you have all your car insurance and documentation to hand. In the unlikely event that you are in an accident, you don’t want to be sieving through box after box of possessions trying to find the required paperwork. You should also notify your landlord if renting privately (or as early as you need to) and begin to inform the relevant authorities and companies of your change of address. This should be anyone who has your confidential information.
2 Weeks – Before the Move –
We’re now within a fortnight from the move, and the finish line is in sight. You should update your bank or building society of your relocation and new address, as should the Post Office, so that they can redirect your mail. If you’re moving with pets over a long distance, necessary transport and consideration need to be organised. Most people overlook this step, but your pets are part of the family and need to be looked after during the move, as many animals find relocating a stressful experience.
If you have “helpful” friends in the area, now is the time to recruit them for help (and return any borrowed items). We say helpful as we want friends that can help them move, not get in the way or snoop around your possessions and drink tea! You can always make it fun with a few nice bacon sandwiches for the helping hands to enjoy.
At this stage, you also need to double-check that your removal company is on top of everything and updates you with arrival times. Because moving is a juggling act, we often forget a task or miss something out. This is the best time to find any gaps and put in corrective measures without it causing delays.
You can now start the process of packing. Pack up the items from the rooms you use less often and ensure that the boxes remain light enough to carry. Top tip: use the biggest boxes for the most lightweight items. Label all containers and boxes with what is in them and what room they need to be delivered to the new house. Some removal companies offer a packing service, so you can leave this to the experts if you wish, while you sort out all the other important tasks now.
4 Days – Before the Move –
You should settle all your outstanding utility bills and arrange your phone and internet connection in your new home. Make sure new phone numbers and the internet connection are installed on the day you move in. Cancel all subscriptions and deliveries and defrost the fridge and freezer. Remind your neighbours of your impending move and say your goodbyes. You can now send or discuss your change of address with the Post Office to forward any mail.
Pack a travel kit that includes first aid gear, torch, and batteries. If you’re moving garden equipment, such as lawnmowers, ensure all fuel is appropriately drained for transit. Valuable and irreplaceable items, like cameras, jewellery, sentimental items, should be packed to travel in the cars with the family. Also, keep in mind that removal vans aren’t climate controlled, so things like candles should also go in the family cars.
Finally, make sure any expired or unwanted medication is disposed of. The best way to do this is by taking them to your local pharmacist and asking them to do this for you. Please don’t throw them in your household bin in case little ones manage to get in there. Ensure you pack all these items up and then take them to the nearest pharmacy, where they will dispose of them safely.
1 Day to Go – The Night Before the Big Day –
With 1 day until the big move, let’s do some final checks. Make sure you have the keys to your new house secure and at hand. Pack a refreshments box for the family and removal’s team. All liquids and oils should be adequately secured, and any items not already packed and boxed need to be. All white goods should be disconnected now. If these goods are hard-wired, then you may need to hire an electrician to disconnect them from the mains.
Top tip: take a photo of the readings with your smartphone for future reference before sending in your final meter readings. All plumbed items such as washing machines need to be properly disconnected. For larger electrical goods such as TVs and computers, please take photos of the back connections to help you install them properly. It is also a good idea to make sure you have a toolkit with you and some old towels or rags at hand just in case you need them during the move.
To be on the safe side, feel free to contact the Anthony Ward Thomas team to go over starting and completion times. Ensure you notify the neighbours in the new area that you are moving into your new home tomorrow and apologise for any noise or road blocking that may occur. This is also the best time to find out if there is sufficient parking and road access for that day (i.e., no road closures or repairs) and ensure you have the route confirmed. Finally, ensure the children are looked after for the move, then get as good a night’s sleep as possible.
Loading – Moving Day –
The big day arrives, and it’s time to do some small final tasks. If possible, arrange for babysitting for the kids, so you are free to concentrate on the move. Go through the house and ensure all taps, switches and lights are off and do a final walk-through check. You can even turn off the circuit breaker to ensure all there’s no electrical issues after you vacate.
Boxes should be loaded first, followed by the big furniture if you are doing it yourself. If you have hired some movers, then you can sit back and marvel at how so much of your house can fit into the back of a van.
Take photos of your meter readings and leave your contact details for the new occupants. Recheck that the delivery team (if using one) has your contact details and know where they are going. By putting the previous steps in place, you’ll have a much easier time on a moving day. That’s why it pays to work with Anthony Ward Thomas; we’ll oversee the entire relocation.
Arrival – Moving Day –
It will help if you aim to arrive before the removal van, so that someone is there to open the house and do a walk-through. Start loading smaller and essential items into your car. When you arrive at the new home, start unpacking the car. Make sure you put these boxes somewhere safe and out of the way. Once the vans arrive, unload the large furniture from the truck and place them in the house roughly where you want them to stay in a room, then move everything in around it later.
All boxes should be labelled, so drop them into their allocated rooms accordingly. If the weather is wet on the move day, put down sheets. This will prevent muddy boots as a lot of people will be coming in and out of your property. Some people can use plastic slip-on feet coverings to make this process a little easier, but this involves a lot of taking off and on when entering the house. You can also put all your boxes and packing material aside for future relocations.
Now is the time to begin unpacking the rooms in order of use. Remember from the previous step the kettle is always the most crucial item. Also include tea bags, milk, coffee, and biscuits in your essential kit. Try to remember to take photos of the current meter readings when you arrive. Introduce yourselves to the neighbours when you get a moment’s rest.
One of the most important rooms to set up is the bedrooms; make sure to assemble your bed and have your curtains up. Finally, source a local takeaway’s number for that evening to save trying to set up the cooker. The rest of the house can be unpacked at your own pace in the coming days and weeks.
Anthony Ward Thomas – Your Go-To Company for Moving Home –
We have a lot of experience in the removals game. And over the last thirty years, we’re seen and done it all. That’s why we promote an ethos of preparation and using a moving checklist for every relocation. You can read ours here if you need additional points, but we’ve covered a lot in this blog. However, should you need more advice, we’re only a phone call or email away.
Customer service is of paramount importance to everyone at Anthony Ward Thomas. This all leads to packing and transporting your belongings to get them to the final destination in perfect condition. We don’t settle for second-best, and neither should you. You’ll be solving lots of tasks by booking with us, including having direct contact with our team.
Give yourself the best start possible and book London’s prestige moving company. Click here for a free quote and the best premium service in London.