I think I have the basics down but I know theres always something missing.
I’m moving across the country to work and obviously live. (hopefully live, then work)
What should I be sure to do before I leave to make sure everything is smooth is my transaction?
I’ve done a lot of the basics but I’m going to leave this open to everything in case someone has something to add which I may have forgotten about. what do you think?
There’s bunches of sites like this that are very helpful.
I always number my boxes and keep a contents list. I don’t write the contents on the box. I have also used coloured labels and then just put coloured paper tags on the doors of the rooms - works great.
Put your important stuff in boxes that you take with you. Anything important on the truck should be marked ‘unpack first’ (or make a note on your list). Some people photograph the contents of each box (easy and simple with digi cams) in case something goes missing in the move.
Ask your mover and your insurance company about their policies for covering your stuff while it’s in transit. Oh, and do whatever you need to to have your mail forwarded.
What Quiddity Glomfuster said.
Make two or three little bowls or boxes with necessities you need during the move:
markers and pens
paper and labels
newspaper to pack breakables
(cell)phone and list of important numbers to call
Everyone in the house will continuously need all those items, so if you have them in duplicate, that will save you a lot of irritation.
There are several threads on moving on the SDMB: here is my contribution to one of them.
Mercilessly declutter as you pack. You’ll never be more in the mood for it, and you’ll feel so good when you realize you didn’t pay to transport a ton of useless junk cross-country.
Pack what you will need for the first night and the first morning in a few boxes and mark them clearly. Like, paint them with pink poster paints or something. These are the last things on the truck and the first things off, or take them in your car if you’re driving. You will face the first day surrounded by boxes upon boxes much better if you’ve slept in a bed with sheets and pillows (even if the matress was still on the floor), taken a shower with a proper towel to dry off, and had your morning caffeince source of choice as well as a decent breakfast.
If possible, pack in one of those ‘Pods’ that are getting popular. They drop off a large LOCKABLE packing container. You fill it with your crap, lock it securely and call them. They come, pick it up and drop it off on a specified date at your new place. Other people don’t get the chance to rummage through your boxes [secured only with tape] and it is trackable on the phone [and with some companies online.]
A lot of websites will have checklists to help you pack, but there are a few things you might want to think about for once you get to the new place.
Definitely pay to have your mail forwarded. We paid about 35$ CDN for 6 months (Canada Post of course) and it was worth it. There are so many companies to get your address changes for that you’re bound to miss one, and this is a good way to find out who you forgot!
Keep cleaning supplies handy as well - the previous tenants/homeowners might not have cleaned up before they left, and there’s nothing worse than a first night in a filthy home. That just starts everything off on the wrong foot.
When we moved (from Ontario to Quebec) we took the time before moving to get as much of the hydro/tv/phone/internet set ups scheduled, so we knew it would be done for the day we got to the new place or soon after (I think the cable guy came to set up the phone/internet/tv the day after we moved). Also sort out where to go and how to go about getting your driver’s license, car registration, insurance etc transferred, so you can just plan to get that done when you have time. Knowing where to go before you even get there just makes it less stressful once you’re surrounded by boxes at the new place! I kept a notebook with me at all times with phone numbers, addresses, contact names of every company, government office etc that I needed during the move.
I also took the time ahead of time to find out when garbage/recycling days were at the new apartment, so we could sort of plan our unpacking with respect to where to put the packing materials afterwards! Lucky for us, garbage is twice a week here!
See if you can find a grocery store near the new place too… always good to know on that first day!
When we moved into our last apartment, the previous tenants had left us the phone book and a couple of flyers for near-by takeout/delivery places (pizza, chinese, etc). While at the time we knew the restaurants in that neighbourhood, we realised how nice that was of them to think about it! So we left the same things behind on the kitchen counter for the new people moving in. In this apartment, we didn’t know where to get food the first night, and ended up ordering from a place that took forever to get the food to us!
If you are one of those people who has a clock radio which you use as an alarm clock, which is usually plugged in but has a battery back-up, put this in your last box to be packed/first box to be opened. Then you have a nice clock/radio/alarm clock. And, you get the benefit of NOT being awoken by a mysterious beeping noise coming from one of the boxes stored in the corner of your room.
In the box of essentials tranported with you or off the truck first, put bed linens. Then, as soon as the bed (or beds) is set up, stop whatever you’re doing and make the bed. Then on that first night, when you’re exhausted beyond belief, you’ll have a freshly-made bed to collapse into. It will be a tiny haven in the midst of the disorder that surrounds you.
If you’re paying by the pound to move (some places do that), don’t pay to move stuff you can replace easily and cheaply at your new location - namely cleaning supplies and food. Give your unopened non-perishables to a local charity before you go. Opened non-perishables and fridge food…see if any of your younger or poorer friends or relatives (like me!) want the stuff.
If you DO have some new-and-full bottles of cleaning supplies put them in your boxes of things that get packed last and unpacked first. Give the new place a bit of a “rubdown” to get rid of other peoples’ germies and unused-house-dust.
If your landlords are anything like the ones I last had, make a reasonable effort to clean and then, by arrangement with them, get one of their approved cleaners in. Sure you’ll lose a small part of your deposit, but there’ll be no arguments.