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No matter the distance, moving is a hassle. In fact, it’s flat out overwhelming to think about all of the things you have to do when relocating your entire life. Even if you hire a moving service, you still have to deal with all of the fine details and general packing on your own. Unfortunately for you, this article can’t do that for you, but it can help you plan out your relocation process so things go smoothly as you move and transition to a new chapter of your life.
Here are the things you need to do when you move, no matter if you’re just moving neighborhoods or moving across the country.
1. Budget & Plan
Sadly, budgeting is going to come into play when you move. Most people don’t really talk about the cost of moving, but it is expensive. Before you bust out the cardboard, you have to budget for how much moving is going to cost you and where that money is going to come from. If you hire a moving service so you can avoid moving furniture on your own, you need to shop around to make sure you’re getting a good price from a reputable and reliable company. You don’t want to shell out hundreds to a company that is going to break your stuff or leave your boxes sitting in the rain.
You also have to budget for your new down payment, any items you’re going to need to buy for your new place, cleaning and repair supplies for the place you’re vacating (if you want your deposit back, you’re going to need to repair any damages), and any new insurance you may need to purchase (renter’s insurance, for example). It’s also best not to include returning security deposits in that budget. You just never know when you’ll get that money back, if at all, so don’t count your eggs until they’ve hatched. The cost of moving is different for everyone, but no one is exempt from budgeting for it. Not even if a new employer is offering to foot the bill. So bust out that spreadsheet, and start crunching the numbers.
2. Change Your Address
Unfortunately, all of your accounts, like at the bank and even online, won’t know you’ve moved unless you manually change your address. That means you have to spend a good amount of time visiting offices and logging into every possible account you have to update the information. You’ll want to make sure you haven’t overlooked a single account. Some possible accounts include: the bank, credit card bills, cell phone bills, health insurance, car insurance, renters insurance, subscription boxes, and any other online shopping site where your info is saved.
The last thing you want is to forget to change an important account and end up not getting your bills (or things you’ve ordered) for a few months. Talk about a financial nightmare! Dot your “i”s and cross your “t”s.
3. Forward Your Address
Even if you’ve changed your address on everything, you still need to go to the post office to officially forward your address. It usually takes a few weeks for the change of address to process through most companies, so this is a safety net to make sure you still get your mail in the meantime. For two weeks, the post office will take any mail addressed to your old residence and forward it to your new one. It also helps guarantee you get any mail from friends and family who haven’t gotten your new address yet.
4. Clean Out Your Stuff
Moving is a fresh start, so you don’t want to pack up unnecessary baggage. Go through your clothes to see what you can let go of, toss out all those old beauty products you haven’t used in six months, and go through the dreaded junk drawer. Approach every group of your possessions with the intention of getting rid of the unnecessary stuff. You’ll be amazed at how much lighter you feel when you’ve let it go.
5. Pack Up Your Life
After you’ve made a budget, decided if you’ll move your possessions yourself or hire a service, and changed your address, all that’s left is packing up your life and hitting the road. When you start packing, it’s best to pack up one room at a time to keep things controlled and organized. Boxes can easily take over your life and leave you spinning, unsure where to start packing next.