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Anyone who has ever moved house will be able to tell you that moving day is far from stress free. It doesn’t matter how old you are, how much you have to pack or how far you have to travel – moving can always be a huge pain!
Of course, things only get worse when you are the one actually organising the move. Packing, unpacking, transporting everything, changing your information and utilities, booking a remover: it all adds up! Worse yet, you could let factors slip through the cracks, only to remember them at the last minute or, even worse, on the moving day itself.
That is not to say that all of this stress is inevitable, of course. With some helpful advice, careful planning and just enough foresight, you can make it so that your move goes off without a hitch. It may still be a chore, but as long as you follow these top tips, you should have no trouble cutting a huge chunk of stress out of your moving day.
Hire a remover
There are three factors that go into planning a successful move: experience, the right equipment and plenty of help.
A remover can provide all of these in spades. A professional will know everything you need to take into account during the planning phase, ensuring that no key details are forgotten about. They will also be able to provide a large enough vehicle to transport your goods, along with the insurance to drive it safely. Finally, they will have enough employees on hand to make the move go as quickly as possible, giving you more time to relax.
However, you must be sure to book your remover in plenty of time. If you wait until the last minute, you may struggle to get a slot, especially if you are moving during a weekend or holiday.
You will also need to let them know as many details about your move as possible.
- Your destination and whether you will have immediate access to it
- If you have any fragile, heavy or particularly valuable items (in case they need special packaging, equipment or insurance)
- Whether they will have to deal with multiple flights of stairs, awkward corners and so on
- If you are moving internationally or Europe
- Whether you have any pets, particularly dogs or cats
The more you can tell your removers in advance, the easier it will be to plan for all eventualities. For example, if you will not have access to your new home for a few days, your removers may need to arrange storage for you.
Another reason to start looking in advance is that this will give you enough time to find a reputable local remover. When examining a candidate, be sure to read through the reviews from their previous customers. You will also want to pay close attention to what they offer in terms of insurance coverage.
As a general rule, it is usually best to collect at least five quotes before choosing a remover. This should give you a clear idea of what constitutes a fair price in your area. Do not rely too much on the average prices you find online, as these will not take local factors into account. In general, remover prices tend to be much higher in the south of England, particularly London, so keep your search local.
Free up your day
This may sound obvious, but there are plenty of people who fail to book time off for their moving day until it is too late.
Taking the day off will give you plenty of time to help with the move and deal with any potential problems as they occur. Even if you are using a professional remover, it will still pay to be on hand, just in case. Also keep in contact with your estate agent as they are likely to have the keys to your new home.
Make a packing list
One of the most stressful parts of any move is the packing. We’ve made another article with a Moving House Checklist. Not only do you need to gather up all of your belongings, you will also need to find some way to fit them into all the suitcases and boxes you have on hand. Granted, a removal company can help you with this, but it is still a big part of the job.
To make things easier, start by making a list of all your belongings. This should include:
- The things you need
- Any belongings you can sell
- Anything you are happy to just get rid of
Doing this early on will give you plenty of time to find new homes for anything that you don’t need. De-cluttering should be simple enough: there are plenty of charities that will take old furniture or clothing, or you could even find homes on freecycling websites like Freegle. If your remover is not supplying packaging materials, this should also give you enough time to stock up on some free moving boxes.
Ask for help
Nobody likes having to move on their own. In the weeks running up to your move, ask friends or family if they would mind lending a hand. If they have moved recently, they may have some large boxes to offer you, or maybe some helpful advice.
In a best case scenario, they may even be willing to let you use their vehicle. However, you should keep in mind that these vehicles may not be insured in the same way as those belonging to a professional remover. For a particularly large or long-distance move, it will often be safer to hire a professional.
Sleep before the move
When you are getting stressed about a moving day, it can be easy to stay up late worrying or going over the plans in your head. However, if you fail to get enough sleep, you will have far less energy and focus for the actual move, making it much more of a slog.
As such, it is a good idea to try and get at least eight hours of sleep on the night before your moving day. Naturally, this will be easier to do if you give yourself more time to plan everything in advance. It also brings us onto the next piece of advice…
Start moving day early
Another advantage of getting a good night’s sleep the day before your move is that it will make it easier for you to start early. The more time you have to get everything done, the more time you will have to relax once it’s all over. This is particularly important for long moves: you do not want to still be unpacking your belongings once it gets to the early hours of the morning!
The trick is to start either early or late enough for you to be able to avoid the morning rush hour. This is particularly important in urban areas, where traffic can cause major deadlocks on a fairly regular basis.
It will also be a good idea to keep your radio on in order to find out about any traffic updates. Most removers will have alternative routes just in case there is some kind of traffic-blocking disaster, but there is no harm in staying aware. The more time you can save on the road, the less stress you will have to deal with once you arrive at your new home.
Updating bills, mail and utilities
When moving to a new home, it is crucial that you let the right people know about your new address. This includes your bank, as well as your utility providers. If you fail to inform them, you could end up failing to hear about important bills or updates to your policies.
That said, moving house can also be an ideal opportunity to look for better utility providers. There is no reason to stay with who you currently have; in fact, your current provider may even be willing to offer a better rate in order to keep you.
You should also keep in mind that certain providers may have an inferior service at your new destination. In particular, many internet service providers are far less effective at what they do in the countryside than in major cities.
Regarding your post, it should be enough to let your providers know about your new address. To make absolutely sure that you do not lose anything, it can also be a good idea to make use of the Royal Mail’s redirection service. This can be booked for periods of 1, 3, 6 or 12 months: more than enough time for you to let all relevant parties know about your new address.
Bag of essentials
When packing, it is easy to forget that there are some items which you cannot do without. Work clothes, toiletries, electronics chargers and other important belongings could be essential soon after you arrival at your new home, so it will be important not to pack these away in an unlabelled packing box!
To avoid this, place your most important belongings in a clearly labelled package or suitcase. If your remover is handling all the packing on your behalf, let them know about your essentials in advance and leave them out in plain site. If you’re moving with children, maybe pack lunch and dinner if you want to avoid eating junk food.
Hire competent conveyancer
This is vital for any move if you’re selling your home. As annoying and tiresome as packing can be, it doesn’t hold a candle to the legal side of moving house!
This is where a top-notch conveyancer will come in handy. Their job will be to let you know about any paperwork or red tape that needs your attention, such as restrictive covenants.
Again, it will be a good idea to check the reviews of different conveyancers before comparing their quotes. If they are freelance, you may even want to ask for proof of their qualifications.
It is also worth noting that, while many estate agencies offer conveyancing services, they tend to be quite expensive. You can avoid overpaying by collecting several quotes from different conveyancers. However, you should also keep in mind that ‘cheapest’ does not always equal ‘best’!
Visit your new home
Arriving in a new home can be a wonderful thing as it is a big life event. But it can also be extremely stressful. One of the best tips to reduce stress levels is to visit your new home a few times beforehand and get to know the area in advance. What are the shops like? Are there train stations nearby? Where can you go to celebrate your new home?
Of course, this also brings us to a crucial point about the moving day itself: ALWAYS check to see what the parking situation is like at your new home. If you’ve hired a van or you have removers make sure you are able to park, it will make the unpacking process much more difficult. When this is the case, it will be a good idea to leave as early as possible so that the delays do not leave you working well into the night.
Get ready with our top tips.
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