Your Moving Timeline for a Stress-Free Residential Move

Moving your household is considered one of the most stressful experiences there is and you need a moving timeline to get prepared.  Moving stress ranks right up there with death and taxes.  It doesn’t have to be that way – with a countdown to moving day and tasks broken down into a workable moving timeline, you can make your move much more manageable.

Here’s your Moving Timeline

8 Weeks Before Moving Day

  • Contact movers and get estimates, discuss packing supply prices and needs, as well as insurance for the move.  The last week and first week of the month generally fill quickly.
  • Start a “Move” file to keep all receipts, estimates, lists, notes and contact information.
  • Begin a running list of notifications and those who will need to be contacted with a change of address.  These will include:
        • Children’s schools
        • Current and previous employers
        • Utilities, including power, cable, phone, internet and water (always note dates, times, names and confirmation numbers)
        • Post Office
        • Subscriptions including magazines and newspapers
        • Memberships including health clubs and social organizations
        • Family and friends
  • Begin a ‘valuables’ box to safely transport important documents (social security cards, passports, birth certificates, etc) as well as jewelry, silver and family heirlooms.  Not only will this keep them in a central location when needed, they can be transported by you and kept in a safe location during the move.
  • If moving out of town, research new medical providers including primary care physicians, dentists and pediatricians and request medical records from current providers.

6-7 Weeks Prior to Moving Day

  • Begin sorting through storage, basement, garage and attics to determine what will make the move.
  • Sell excess through a moving sale, consignment shop, online site or classified ad.
  • Begin packing holiday decorations and out of season items.
  • Order packing supplies, include:
        • Boxes
        • Packing tape
        • Unprinted newspaper
        • Bubble wrap
        • Markers

4-5 Weeks Prior to Moving Day

  • Begin a household inventory and take photographs.
  • Schedule the activation date for utilities in your new home.
  • Make arrangements to transport pets and houseplants.
  • Keep packing!  Label boxes on both the sides and top of the box.  Listing contents can be helpful when you’re looking for that coffeemaker after the move!
  • Use color coded labels to place on boxes according to which room they will go into in the new home.
  • Check prescriptions to make sure supplies are adequate and have hard copies of any prescriptions for the new pharmacy.
  • Contact auto and home insurance companies regarding policies and change of address.
  • Open a bank account in your new location.

2-3 Weeks Prior to Moving Day

  • Give away or properly dispose of items that cannot be transported, such as paints, paint remover, propane and lighter fluid.
  • Keep packing!  Remember to not overload boxes, especially the larger boxes with heavy object.  It’s okay to fill book boxes completely full with books.
  • Finalize moving day plans, including pet and child care arrangements.
  • Schedule a cleaning service for the old and new home if necessary.
  • Confirm movers and dates of any real estate transactions, such as closings.

The Week Before the Move

  • Keep packing!  Make sure you have several boxes and trash bags on hand for moving day.
  • Put together a moving day box with extra packing tape, markers, basic tools, labels, pen and paper, utility knife and scissors.
  • Begin emptying the freezer and refrigerator.
  • Pick up dry cleaning, return rentals, gather belongings from lockers, friends, etc.
  • Arrange for funds for moving day – both cash on hand and payment for movers.
  • Begin putting together a pile of essentials for the first day in your new home (towels, toilet paper, soap, linens, coffee, change of clothes)

Moving Day

  • Have a designated person work with movers to answer questions and direct placement of furniture and boxes.
  • Offer refreshments such as cold drinks to the movers.  Bottled water is always appreciated.
Using this moving timeline will help keep things organized and your life as stress-free as possible.