New Visitors Privacy Policy Sponsorship Contact Us Media
Baby Boomers Family Green Home and Auto In Critical Condition Just Starting Out Lifestyle Money
-advertisement -
News & Advice Compare Rates Calculators
Rate Alerts  |  Glossary  |  Help
Mortgage Home
Auto CDs &
Retirement Checking &
Taxes Personal

Your moving timeline


  • If your company is handling the relocation, find out exactly what is covered and what you're expected to do.
  • Get estimates from three movers -- ask friends, colleagues and relatives for recommendations.
  • If you have a house to sell, call a real estate agent and get it ready to go on the market.
  • Start inventorying what you have. Determine what you can give away, throw away or sell.
  • Arrange for a garage sale.
  • If you know what town you want to live in, consider making a house- or apartment-hunting trip. Use this trip to check on schools, too.
  • If you haven't decided on a town, contact real estate agents in the area you're considering, or check out Web sites that let you compare city demographics.
  • Get a change of address kit from the post office.
  • Make a list of everyone who needs to be notified of the move -- relatives, friends, creditors, schools, doctors, dentists, veterinarians, newspapers, magazines, etc.
  • If you're moving into a hotel temporarily, consider arranging for a general post office address. It's good for 30 days from first delivery.
  • Start a file for notes, receipts and other details of your move.
  • Start using food that's in the freezer.
  • If you're flying to your new location, book your flight and arrange for the mover or someone else to ship your car. Arrange for a rental car if necessary.
- advertisement -


  • Select and contact a mover.
  • Let the mover know how much packing you intend to do.
  • Arrange for a storage facility in your new town if you won't be moving into a new home right away.
  • Contact insurance companies to make sure your belongings are covered during the move. If not, find out what the mover covers. Its basic insurance probably insures items by the pound, which is not enough. See what other insurance they offer.
  • Have an appraisal of expensive items you want shipped by the mover.
  • If you're moving into or out of an apartment building, reserve the elevator for moving day.
  • Send change of address cards to the post office, etc.
  • Notify schools, day care, doctors, dentists and veterinarians of the move and get copies of records.
  • Cancel magazine subscriptions or have them forwarded to the new address.


  • If you're doing the packing, get boxes, tape, packing paper and box markers.
  • Start packing. Begin with things you won't need during the next few weeks.
  • Necessities box: This is stuff you'll need right away in your new home -- dishes, utensils, a few pots and pans, coffee pot, can opener, towels, toilet tissue, toothbrush, etc. Make sure the box is clearly marked.
  • Pack a separate box of cleaning supplies.
  • If moving long distance, map out route and book hotel rooms.


  • Check garage, attic and other storage areas for items that need to be packed.
  • Confirm with post office that it received notification of your address change.
  • Give away plants -- movers won't take them. Movers also won't take flammables, paint, ammunition, chemicals, etc. Refillable propane tanks must be emptied and sealed by a professional.
  • Consider a sitter for children and pets on moving day.


  • Arrange to have utilities and phone service shut off, or transferred if it's a local move. Be aware, movers need light, so have power cut off the day after you move. Keep phone service on through the move unless you're using a cell phone. Don't cancel cell phone service -- you may need it while en route to new home.
  • Arrange to have utilities and phone service on the day you arrive at your new home.
  • Have the car checked for a long distance move.


  • Close safe-deposit box. Important papers, jewelry, etc. should be kept with you for the move.
  • Defrost freezer and clean refrigerator.
  • Refill prescriptions.
  • Confirm date and other arrangements with mover.
  • You may want to close savings accounts, but keep checking account and CDs active until you can open new accounts in your new town. Consider getting traveler's checks for the trip.
  • Get a cashier's check for the movers.
  • Pack clothes and any items you're taking with you. Leave out only the things you need up until the last minute.
  • Drain oil and gas from lawn mowers, snow blowers, snowmobiles, etc.
  • Return library books and movie rentals.
  • Cancel newspaper subscriptions.


  • Make sure someone's there to supervise the movers.
  • After everything is moved out, make a final inspection.
  • Review the bill of lading very carefully.
  • Make sure the mover has a phone number to reach you in your new town.
  • Set thermostat at proper setting.
  • Lock all windows and doors.
  • If you're leaving appliances behind, make sure they're turned off.
  • If the house isn't sold yet, make sure a relative and the real estate agent have keys.
  • Let police know the house is vacant.
  • Pack phones and other items you may have left for the last day.
  • Don't forget the dog or cat.


  • Get there before the movers.
  • Make sure utilities and the phone have been connected.
  • Have the cashier's or certified check ready. Movers will expect it before they unload.
  • Take a quick walk around to make sure you remember where you want furniture placed.
  • Someone should be available to direct the movers.
  • It may take a couple of weeks to unpack all the boxes. Make sure the movers put them where they won't be in the way.
  • Check for damaged items.
  • Carefully review the bill of lading. Make sure all boxes and furniture are accounted for before signing.

-- Posted: Oct. 15, 1999

Quick take | A closer look | Cut the costs | Cut the confusion


top of page
See Also
Main story: Give yourself lots of time
Moving glossary
More moving stories

Print   E-mail
30 yr fixed mtg 3.53%
48 month new car loan 3.19%
1 yr CD 0.55%
Mortgage calculator
See your FICO Score Range -- Free
How much money can you save in your 401(k) plan?
Which is better -- a rebate or special dealer financing?
Mortgage Basics
Follow the process from house hunting
to closing.
How much can I afford?
How much is my payment?
What documents do I need?
What is a home inspection?
What is the closing?
Can I remove PMI?
Banking glossary  
News archive  
Keep an eye on the leading rates  
Find a high-yielding CD
- advertisement -
- advertisement -

About Bankrate | Privacy Policy/Your California Privacy Rights | Online Media Kit | Partnerships | Investor Relations | Press Room | Contact Us | Sitemap
NYSE: RATE | RSS Feeds |

* Mortgage rate may include points. See rate tables for details. Click here.
* To see the definition of overnight averages click here. ®, Copyright © 2016 Bankrate, Inc., All Rights Reserved, Terms of Use.