Smooth Move Checklist...

So you have decided to make a move.  Are you ready to box up everything you own - all the possessions that mean "home" to you and your family?  It is no wonder that moving is ranked among life's most stressful events.  However, Bill's Movers wants to make your life a little easier.  We have compiled a checklist of things you need to know.

SIX WEEKS BEFORE YOUR MOVE

Take an objective look at what you own.  Decide what must go and what you can leave behind.  Books you have read and will never read again?  Records you haven't listened to since high school?  The pan with the broken handle or the children's long-neglected games and toys?  Remember more boxes equal more money. 

If you have items you don't want, organize a garage sale.  Remember, one man's junk is another man's treasures. 

Start a central file for all the details of your move.  It is a good idea to purchase a brightly colored organizer with pockets.  You will be less likely to misplace something that is out of the norm for you.  Keep all receipts on moving related expenses, you may be entitled to a tax deduction. 

Create a floor plan of your new home and begin thinking about where you will want to place your furnishings.  Advance planning eases the stress of making major decisions when the movers arrive at your new home.  Mark and label specific pieces of furniture on your diagram and put it in your moving folder.

FOUR WEEKS BEFORE YOUR MOVE

Notify the post office, magazines, credit card companies and friends of your change of address. The US Postal Service offers a kit to make this process easier.

Contact utilities (gas, water, electricity, telephone, cable) to schedule disconnection of services on the day FOLLOWING your move.  You will want to have utilities on while you are still in the house.  Schedule all your utilities to be connected at your new home the day before you move in so that service is on when you arrive.  Also, don't forget to call experts to do installations for the day of your arrival.  

Complete any repair work on your old home and arrange for any critical services needed at your new home.

If packing yourself, start packing seldom used articles.  Pack fancy dishes, glasses, specialty cookware, non essential clothing, curios, art, photos and decorative items.

As you pack, remember to keep each box light enough to be handled by any of the adult members of your family.  Heavier items go in small boxes, lighter items in larger boxes.

If you are planning a garage sale, pick a date at least a week before the move and advertise.  Think about teaming up with neighbors who want to sell some of their old belongings and plan a neighborhood "SUPER SALE".

THREE WEEKS BEFORE YOUR MOVE

Take inventory of your everyday household goods, such as radios, pots and pans and small appliances.  Decide which items you will discard or put in storage.

Self-packers: start you serious packing.  Label the contents of all boxes and pack CAREFULLY.

As best you can, box essential items together.  Write OPEN FIRST/LOAD LAST on these boxes.  When you move into your new home, you will be able to easily identify these boxes and get to important items quickly.  Items like pots, dishes, silverware, alarm clocks, bedding, pillows, towels, special toys and essential items for babies and children.

Make sure you have your driver's license, auto registration and insurance records.

Contact your doctors, dentist and veterinarian to receive copies of medical records if you are moving out of town.  Make your personal travel arrangements.  Also, pack your phone book so you can stay in touch with friends easier.

Plan your food purchases to have as little as possible in the freezer or refrigerator by the time you move.  Use all frozen items and buy only what you will eat in the next three weeks.  This only applies to long distance moves.  Keep in mind your refrigerator and freezer will be traveling without electricity.

Contact your children's schools and arrange for records to be forwarded to your new school district.

If you are moving to a new town, make new bank safety deposit box arrangements.  Make plans on moving the contents of your old safety deposit box yourself. 

Hold your garage sale now.

TWO WEEKS BEFORE YOUR MOVE

Check with your insurance company to cancel current coverage or transfer coverage to your new home.

Make arrangements for transporting your pets and any house plants.  The movers will not be able to carry them on the truck.

Meet with your bank to change account status.

Transfer all current prescriptions to a drug store in your new town.

Cancel any delivery services such as newspapers or have them forwarded to your new address.  Consider starting a subscription to the newspaper in your new town.

Have your automobile serviced if your are moving to a new town.

Be sure to empty secret hiding places to remove valuables and spare house keys.

ONE WEEK BEFORE YOUR MOVE

Mow your lawn for the last time.

Dispose of toxic or flammable items that can not be moved.  Drain the gas and oil from gas powered tools such as lawn mowers.

Double check to make sure arrangements have been made to disconnect and service your major appliances that are being moved.  The movers will not disconnect any gas appliances.  They will disconnect your washer, dryer and ice maker as long as they are all electric.

Pack your "trip kit" of necessary items that should go in your car.  These items consist of  your checkbook, cash or travelers checks, medications, essential toiletries, light bulbs, flashlight, toilet paper, pet food, spare glasses or contact lenses, baby or child care items, toys and car games for children and your moving file.

If you have young children, arrange for a baby sitter to watch them on moving day.  Since you will have your hands full, the extra attention from a sitter will distract the child's attention from the turmoil of a move.  Also arrange for a sitter to be available when you arrive at your new home.

Pack your own suitcase of clothes for the move.

Put your OPEN FIRST/LOAD LAST boxes in a separate place so the mover can identify them.

Pay all outstanding bills.  Be sure to indicate your new address on payment receipts.

Remove any fixtures you are taking with you.

ONE TO TWO DAYS BEFORE YOUR MOVE

The movers will arrive to start the packing process.

Arrange for payment to the moving company.  This payment must be made when your belongings arrive at your new home.  Be sure to find out your moving company's accepted method of payment.  Also, find out what you do in case of any damage that may occur.

Empty your safety deposit box.  Plan to take important papers, jewelry, cherished family photos, irreplaceable mementos and vital computer files with you.

Write directions to your new home for the movers, provide the new phone number and contact phone numbers in case they need to reach you.

Leave your forwarding address and phone number for your home's new occupants.

If your old house will be sitting vacant, notify police and neighbors.

MOVING DAY

Remove linens from the beds and pack in an OPEN FIRST box.

When the movers arrive, review all details.  Accompany the movers thru the house and give any directions that may be needed.  Go over any special requests or concerns.  After explaining any special requests, step back and let them load your items on the truck.  Keep in mind, they do this every day.

If there is time, give the house a final cleaning or arrange in advance for someone to perform this service the day after moving out.

Review your floor plan to refresh your memory about where you want items placed.

Check to make sure the utilities have been connected and follow up on any delays.

Confine your pets to an out of the way room to help keep them from running away, getting unduly agitated by all the activity or getting hurt.  You may even consider boarding them overnight.

Plan to be present when the movers arrive.  Be prepared to pay them as soon as your move is complete.

Contact your moving company immediately if there is any sign of damage or missing items.  If you believe something is missing, please unpack ALL boxes before contacting the moving company.  Many times something is packed and is believed to be missing but is just misplaced.  If you have a broken or damaged item, contact your moving company within a week.  Most companies will understand on boxed items that you may have not gotten them all unpacked and may find damages after a week, but be sure and contact them as soon as possible.

IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT US.  Email us at Billsmovers@aol.com, call us at (903) 792-7281 or stop by for a visit at 1407 Texas Boulevard, Texarkana, Texas.