Moving house and packing up is never an easy job. Some say that moving house is one of the most stressful events you'll ever go through!
So Box Depot have put together some handy hints and tips to make your move as smooth as possible ...
As Soon As Possible
Working a room at a time, get rid of clutter/junk that you won't be taking with you to your new home. Be prepared to be surprised/horrified at the amount of rubbish you'll create! Either sell your unwanted items or dispose of them in a responsible manner. Don't forget the stuff you have in the attic/basement and shed/garage! This is often forgotten until the last minute. You may find that there are a lot of unwanted items in the attic or garden shed - this is the ideal time to dispose of them.
If you have larger pieces of furniture or appliances that are still in good-ish condition, but which you simply have no more use for, give it away. Some charities will take furniture, but phone first to check. If you're in the Dublin area, check out Dublin Waste for details on waste management.
Doctors, Dentists & Opticians
If you are changing area, research new practices to join and let your current GP know you are moving. Liaise with your hospital if you are undergoing regular treatment.
If you are changing area and have school-going children, notify the current school's head teacher of your child's leaving date. Once the new school has been sorted out, order new school uniforms if needed.
A Month or More in Advance
Begin at least 2-4 weeks before your move. Start with things that you will not need immediate access to. Label boxes with the details of their contents (try to be specific) and the room in which they are to be placed at the new address. Remember, the heavier the item to be packed, the smaller the box should be. Do not overstrain boxes, or your back!
Try to start using up the food in the freezer unless you are moving a short distance and are sure that any frozen food you do take with you will not defrost or denature during the move. The last thing you need is food poisoning when you are trying to get settled into your new home!
If you need accommodation during the move book your hotel/B&B well in advance, especially if the move occurs during the summer/holiday season.
Make arrangements to book pets into a kennel/cattery etc or for friends/relatives to take them during the move. Arrange for the transfer of your pet's records to the new vet if necessary.
Get it serviced, especially if you are going to be going on a long journey to your new place.
If you are ordering these new for your new house, confirm the correct delivery dates and address.
2-4 Weeks in Advance
Contact Businesses You Use
Contact your insurance agent to transfer property/car/medical insurance to your new address.
When organising dental and medical records, don't forget medicines, prescriptions, eyeglass prescriptions and vaccination records.
Contact any clubs or associations for information on transferring or ending your membership.
Contact any utility companies such as Bord Gais, ESB and An Post to transfer your bills, TV license and services to your new address.
If you have young children, arrange for a babysitter to watch them on Moving Day. Older children may be a valuable helping hand during the move and may actually want to be of assistance.
Return Borrowed Items
While you were sorting out the clutter/junk, you'll probably have come across things that you've borrowed. Remember to return library books, DVDs or anything else that you have borrowed or rented. Also, collect all items that are currently being cleaned, stored or repaired (clothes, shoes, watches etc.
2 Weeks Before Moving Day
Make final packing decisions. Clean and clear your home, including basements and attics.
Dispose of flammables such as cleaning fluids, matches, acids, chemicals, aerosol cans, paint and poisons such as weedkiller in a responsible manner.
Drain all the oil and fuel from your lawnmower and power tools to ensure safe transportation.
Plan meals that will use up all the food in your fridge, freezer and larder.
Change of Address
If you haven't already done so, begin to notify people of your change of address.
Think about all your indoor/outdoor plants. If you are not taking all of them, consider giving your plants to a friend or local charity. Remember that plants that are growing in the ground will be expected to stay by the new owners of your home, unless by explicit prior agreement.
One Week Before Moving Day
Employers, Past and Current
Don't lose track of outstanding employee benefits, such as pension schemes, and don't forget to notify your current employer of your move now.
Items on Loan
Return borrowed items from friends and neighbours and get back anything you have loaned that you want returned.
Settle and cancel outstanding local supplier accounts. It is a thoughtful idea to leave details of these local suppliers for the new owners of your home, as well as details of bin collection day etc.
It is sensible to change the locks on your new property as you have no idea who has a copy of the existing keys. So organise a locksmith to change the locks on the day you move or shortly afterwards.
This is your last week to tie up loose ends. Check to make sure you haven't overlooked anything.
Three Days Before Moving Day
Pack a bag with a change of clothes, and essential toiletries. Don't forget to keep your mobile phone charging cables close at hand, as these are easily misplaced during all the upheaval.
Include a survival kit for your new home: toilet paper, paper towels, lightbulbs, torch, scissors, candles, screwdriver, pliers, allen keys, matches, utility knife, tape, cash and a note of important numbers such as estate agents and solicitors. Put this box in the boot of your car within easy reach.
Do last minute laundry. If you plan to store for an extended period, keep back some clothes for the opposite season.
Ensure that al the keys to your new home are going to be available. Similarly, make sure the new owners of your home will get all their keys too!
Two Days Before Moving Day
Empty, defrost and clean your fridge/freezer.
Make sure any packets, bottles or jars are sealed (with sealing tape if necessary!) to prevent spillage during transportation.
Pack valuables and documents and put in a safe place. Make sure you keep important documents like passports, driving license, jewellery and money with you during the move.
One Day Before Moving Day
Food and Drink
Arrange for refreshments for Moving Day, bearing in mind that your cooker may be disconnected. Moving is hungry work, so pack teabags and coffee (and the kettle!), milk, juice, biscuits, fruit, cheese, or something easy and filling to eat.
Plan the evening meal for Moving Day. It may be easier to eat out, or have a takeaway delivered. Don't forget your celebratory bottle of champagne!
Prepare your plants for travel by making sure they are well watered and secure in their pots.
Make sure you fully charge your mobile phones - and don't forget to pack the chargers when you're done!
Ensure you have detailed directions of how to get to your new property (if you don't know already!). Put it on a piece of paper - it will be invaluable for others who may be transporting your belongings.
Clean your house from top to bottom before you walk out the door for the last time. It is a nice gesture, and hopefully the person you are buying from will have done the same for you. A note wishing your buyers luck in their new home also creates goodwill.
Strip your beds. Keep the bedding in a box that will travel with you so that you can easily pull it out for the first night. It is also a good idea to pack some towels with you so you can have a bath/shower at the end of the day.
Meters: Make sure you take your own readings of the gas and electricity meters at both your old and new homes.
Since you may wish to clean your new home before your belongings are brought in, make sure to pack your vacuum cleaner last.
Make a Final Inspection of your home before you leave. Check that all windows are securely closed and water, gas and electricity supplies are switched off. Keys, together with any documents relating to the property or equipment remaining should be left at a nominated point or with a nominated person.
Make a First Inspection of your new home to ensure that everything you expect to be there is indeed there.
Unpack your belongings and place the boxes in the appropriate rooms.
Make up the beds as soon as possible so that you have somewhere to sleep - at the end of the day you will be too tired!
Remember to put your valuables and important documents somewhere safe in the house.
Open your bottle of champagne to celebrate your new home!