Moving to a new home is a significant chapter in our lives, filled with excitement and new beginnings. However, packing up and transitioning from one place to another can only be challenging with a well-thought-out plan. In this guide, we will explore the intricacies of preparing for a household move, uncovering the strategies and tips that can turn this potentially stressful endeavour into a smooth and organised transition. So, let’s begin this journey towards a successful move, where careful preparation is the key to a stress-free relocation.
When you’re moving house, the last thing you want to do is pay to transport items you throw away once you’re in the new place. Have a thorough sort-out at least two weeks before the move.
Ensure you look everywhere – the loft, under the stairs, spare rooms, outbuildings, the back of kitchen cupboards, and the garden. Discovering how much stuff you’ve accumulated over the years can be a big shock.
Be honest about whether you will use anything that has yet to be out again in the last few years. If the answer’s no, get rid of it – you might even get some money for it.
Plan where the furniture will go.
Picture your new home and consider how and whether you’ll use your current furniture. The estate agent should have provided you with a document detailing the dimensions of each room so you can work out what will fit and what won’t.
It’s a good idea to visit your new property before completion to double-check measurements and see whether there’s room for your curtains, furniture, appliances, etc.
The sooner you begin this task, the longer you’ll have to try and sell things for a decent price.
Decide whether to use a removal company.
If you live in a ground-floor, one-bedroom flat with little clutter, you could hire a van and move yourself on the day for as little as £100.
If you’re doing it yourself, book the largest van you can (bearing in mind that you can drive up to 3.5 tonnes with a standard driving licence). Ask for a low kerb height or a let-down tailboard to make loading and unloading easier.
Remember, you’ll probably have to make several journeys, including a final one, to return the van, so this option is only practical if you’re moving a reasonably short distance.
There’s too much for a DIY move if you have more than four empty rooms. Imagine having to pick up every item you own, carry it across an obstacle course (including stairs), and put it down without breaking your back – and all to a deadline.
A removal firm can ease the mental and physical stress of loading and unloading to a lunchtime deadline on a moving day.
If you decide to use a removal company, start researching firms early so you have time to get competitive quotes.
Identify your valuables and breakables.
Some removal firms will pack for you for an extra cost, which removes much of the stress and is much quicker than doing it yourself.
But if you need to start using a removal company or would prefer to pack for yourself, try to pack your breakable items first. Use bubble wrap or extra packaging for protection, and label these boxes as fragile. Consider transporting anything particularly delicate in your car rather than the van or lorry.
The removal company’s insurance may only cover objects up to a specific value, even if they pack them for you, so move anything especially expensive or sentimental in your vehicle.
Start packing your boxes.
There are simple things you can do to make packing – as well as moving and unpacking – easier for yourself:
- Buy quality packing materials, including enough boxes, bubble wrap and tissue paper
- Put layers of crumpled paper or protective material between each item to prevent scratching
- Don’t overpack boxes
- Spread heavy items out between boxes
- Write on each box what the contents are, which room they should go in, and indicate which is the right way up.
If this sounds like too much hassle, getting your removal company to pack your belongings for you can add surprisingly little to the cost of your move. Not only will it mean your items are insured against breakage, but they’ll also be packed by specialists who will do it quickly and carefully.
You can even go the whole hog and ask them to unpack for you, too.
It generally takes professional removal companies between half a day and two days to pack your items, depending on how much stuff you own, and a day or two to deliver them.
Notify companies of your move.
Before you move house, you’ll need to let your utility providers, banks, insurers, doctors and other organisations know you’re changing address.
See our moving house checklist for a complete list of who you must contact.
Ready to make informed mortgage decisions? Contact us for expert guidance. Our experienced team of mortgage specialists is here to assist you every step of the way. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer, home mover or looking to refinance, we can place you with the right experts to provide personalized advice tailored to your needs.