One Month or More Before Moving
- If you are moving internationally make sure vaccinations are up to date. (For you and your pets.)
- Fill out change of address order form for post office.
- Get quotes and Make arrangements with moving company or reserve a rental truck.
- Recruit helpers to help you.
- Document your belongings before packing begins. Take pictures or
video tape your belongings. Record any current damage. Note serial numbers of electronic equipment. Identify any valuable that you might want to take with you.
- Make travel arrangements, if necessary, with airlines, train, buses, car rental
agencies and hotels.
- Transfer or cancel memberships in churches, classes, clubs and civic organizations.
- Ask your doctor and dentist and vets for referrals to new city and transfer prescriptions medical histories, x rays, dental records.
- Set up basic banking facilities in your new city. Internet banking is useful if you need access to your records. If required get a new safety deposit box
- Check into the laws and requirements for home-based
businesses, any required professional tests or upgrade, business licenses and any special laws that might be relevant to you.
- Make arrangements for transporting pets. This includes medication, vaccines, tranquilizers or any special packaging. If traveling internationally check for quarantine laws, or muzzling requirements.
- Use up food, so that there is less left to pack.
- Clean clothing, bedding, curtains and carpets and treat for moths/fleas or any other pests. Wrap securely and pack.
- Arrange for schools / daycare if you are moving during school year.
- Start packing and get rid of excess stuff.
- Hold a garage sale / drop off to Charity shop, or sell any excess belongings.
One To Two Weeks Before Moving
- Switch utility services to new address. Inform electric, gas,
water, newspaper and magazine subscriptions, telephone and cable companies
of your move.
- Confirm with your helpers for moving day.
- Confirm travel arrangements.
- Reserve freight elevator if moving from an apartment/condo building.
- If you are moving yourself arrange for dollies or carts, as well as pads to protect furniture. You might also need rope/bungees to secure furniture in truck.
- Have appliances serviced or disconnected. Drain if appropriate.
- Plan ahead for special needs of infants.
- Transfer funds to your new bank in time so that funds have cleared by the time you have moved. Closing accounts can be done now or wait till after you move. Before closing, be sure there are no outstanding checks, bills or automatic payments on the accounts. Note your new bank accounts and important numbers and keep on you. Cancel any special local store card.
- Collect valuables from safe-deposit box. Make copies of any important
documents before mailing (registered mail) or hand carry them to your new address.
- Check with your insurance agent to ensure you'll be covered through
your homeowners or renter's policy during the move.
- Defrost freezer and refrigerator. Let them dry out before closing. Place deodorizer inside to control odours.
- Give a close friend or relative your travel route and schedule as well as cellular phone numbers so you may be reached if needed.
- Pack any special requirement for children, pets, medical requirements, maps.
- Arrange for cleaning of your old home if necessary before new owners move in.
- Arrange to have someone watch house, or remove and forward any mail or flyers at both your new or old home if they are going to remain empty while you own them.
On Moving Day
- Double check closets, drawers, shelves, attic, yard and garage to be sure
they are empty. Check that any borrowed items are returned.
- Carry important documents, currency and jewelry yourself, or use registered mail. Always make copies.
- Carry travelers checks for quick, available funds. Interact bank machines can provide most cash requirements, but a small amount is useful.
- Make sure taps are closed, gas is turned off if necessary, lights are out.
- Note particulars of moving truck/team in case you need to contact company.
At New Home
- Locate the hospitals, police stations, veterinarian, fire stations or emergency services near your home.
- Renew your driver's license, and auto registration.
- Shop around for new insurance policies, especially auto coverage, it may be less expensive in your new city.
- Update your will and other legal papers including medical coverage to reflect new address/conditions.
Change of Address
Change of AddressMake sure all your friends, family and business associates
have your new address. Note the phone numbers of your new
utility companies, insurance agents, Realtor and other organizations in your new
location. Update your personal information on internet based services such as Paypal, or your email providers.
For more information from Canada Post on Change of address or mail redirect see Canada Post
- Have lots of moving supplies for packing: Boxes, marking pens, bubble wrap, newspaper and tissue, already prepared adhesive labels, garbage bags. Some people like to use shrink wrap to cover furniture. It comes in large rolls and is used to wrap skids of boxes in warehouses.
- Tape, utility knife and scissors. Cleaning rags.
- Tape measure
- Colour coded labels
- Use strong boxes and containers that can be secured tightly, and can stand stacking. It helps to have boxes which are similar in size to stack more securely, you can purchase strong boxes from moving supply stores and sometimes from moving companies.
- Pack audio-video equipment in their original boxes, label cables and
screws. If removing screws or nuts and bolts, tape them to the objects they are removed from or replace them in one of the parts.
- Avoid loading too much weight into one box. 30-40 pounds should be your maximum. Use smaller boxes for books.
- Label each box and indicate the following: (a) Which room it should
go in (b) Whether it is fragile (c) If it should be loaded last so it will
be unloaded first. If you prepare labels ahead of time they can be easily applied. Colour coding them helps.
- Pad contents with packing material such as bubble wrap, newspaper
or tissue. Using towels and blankets to wrap fragile items saves space but make sure it is labeled.
- Pack boxes tightly but they should not bulge.
- Have rugs and draperies cleaned before moving and leave them in wrappings
for the move.
- Pack medicines in a leak proof container. Any cleaner or solvent should be packed carefully in case of leaks.
- Carry all valuables with you.
- Check with your local Department of Agriculture for regulations
regarding moving plants internationally. Many states have restrictions
on certain plants to prevent importing bugs or pests. You might require certificates to attest to the health of plant material.
- If you are moving internationally make sure pets have appropriate vaccinations and health certificates. Make sure of quarantine requirements.
Moving House Plants
A Couple Of Weeks Before You Move
- Trim plants or take cuttings so plant is smaller. Inspect for bugs or disease and treat or dispose of.
A Week Before Your Move
- Place any plant coming in from outside or that you suspect of carrying bugs in a black plastic bag, along with a bug/pest strip, conventional flea collar or bug powder. Close the bag and place in a cool area overnight to kill any pests on the plant or in the soil.
The Day Before Your Move
- Place the plants in cardboard containers. Hold them in place with dampened
newspaper or packing paper. Use paper to cushion the leaves and place a
final layer of wet paper on top to keep them moist. If you must leave your
plants behind, then take cuttings. Put them in a plastic bag with wet paper
towels around them. Wrapping a plant is a clear plastic bag and sealing it with air inside helps protect the plant.
On The Day Of Your Move
- Set the boxes aside and mark "DO NOT LOAD" so they won't be taken on the moving van. Close the boxes and punch air holes in the
top before loading into your car.
- Park your car in a shaded area in the summer and a sunny spot in the
winter. Bring in if freezing.
- Unpack the plants as soon as possible after arrival. Remove plants
through the bottom of the box or cut box open, to avoid damaging plant. Keep plant in shade for a couple of days and let them get gradually accustomed to more light.
Moving Garden Plants
- Research climate and soils of new home. Make sur they are hardy to the climate otherwise leave behind.
- Seeds - gather and store in an airtight container.
- Bulbs - dig up during their natural dormant season. Pack in a mixture
of loose dry peat moss and vermiculite.
- Garden tools - dissinfect cutting tools and wrap any sharp surface. Household
bleach can be used to disinfect a variety of items.
- Plants - some plants can be dug up and transplanted. Spring and Fall are best time for this. Prune back when transplanting. If moving internationally it may be necessary to get a Ministry of agriculture certificate stating that the plant material is healthy. It will probably have to be moved bare root.
- Remember that plants are usually included in the sale of a house unless specifically excluded from the sale deal. Check with your realtor.
Cats and Dogs
Cats and dogs can be taken in your car. If so, remember to take along
the following items:
- A leash for letting your pet out of the car.
- Newspaper or sheets to keep your car clean.
- Sometimes a doc crate or familiar blanket of pet bed is useful.
Animals can get car-sick and will require frequent stops along the way.
Also, check ahead to see if the hotel where you are staying allows pets.
Depending on the animal's temperament and size, it might be better to have
it shipped by air. Be sure to check if your destination has any local requirements such as licencing,
or restrictions on animals or special breeds.
To have your pet shipped by air, make sure someone can meet your pet
at the destination airport and take care of it until you arrive. A kennel
can do this for you and keep your pet until you have completed your move,
If you are flying to your new destination, your cat or dog can ride in
the baggage compartment. While booking your flight make sure the plane has a pressurized baggage compartment. Othewise your pet might be delayed to a later flight. You may need the following items:
- Health certificate. Obtain this from your veterinarian.
- Pet container. The airline might have a special container available
or you can use your own as long as it complies with airline regulations. Some airlines allow you to bring a small pet into the cabin with you as long as the container fits under the seat as other carry on luggage must.
- Tranquilizers. Your vet can provide tranquilizers to be given to your
pet immediately before going to the airport.
- Your pet can be comforted by having a piece of cloth with
your smell on it.
Hamsters, birds and other small animals can be transported in
your car. To help keep the animals calm and quiet, as well as out of drafts, cover cages with a cloth.
Also, make sure they have food and water available.
Fish are tricky to move. Check with your local
pet store, or tropical fish association, for recommendations on moving your specific type of fish. Professionnals ship fish by courrier using special insulated crates with oxygen pumped in.
www.aquarium fish.net instructions on moving fish.
The above information comes from a number of sources as well as original material from Nick Boothby. We Wish to credit Allied VanLines for some of the useful tips presented here.
Consumer complaints against moving companies have been rising. Attention to detail during the selection and contract preparation can really help avoid problems.
- Make sure that your expectations have been clearly explained. Do not assume that the mover will do as you expect. Tell them in detail and in writing.
- Get a binding estimate from the moving company. Make sure the amount is written in the contract. Get quotes on extras before signing.
- Inquire about their on-time record and other complaints with the local
Better Business Bureau or consumer complaints department. What happens if weather is bad and delays are unavoidable?
- Movers are limited by law regarding what they will award you for lost
or damaged goods. To cover potential damage, check with your insurance company BEFORE you move.
- Ask about expected gratuities and write into contract. Are you promising a bonus? Write it in.
- Have the contract include a guarantee of how many hours the job will
take, allowing an overrun of no more than 10%.
- Be sure all charges are listed on contract.
- Inform the moving company of how many stairs are at your new home. Make sure you know about any particularly difficult areas such as extra narrow stairs.
- Watch loading and unloading and examine all items carefully before signing a receipt. Have your photos handy
- Document an inventory of your belongings before you pack. Note any existing damage. Photograph as much as possible.