If you are relocating into the Portland metropolitan area and your new home purchase has closed, use our checklist to help get ready for moving day. Whether you’re moving into a Pearl District condo, a new construction home in Vancouver or a Lake Oswego waterfront estate, the same rules of thumb apply to help prepare you for your move.
One month or more before the move:
- Start a log of moving receipts, paying close attention to those that may be tax deductible.
- Research moving companies, checking references, obtaining written estimates as well as pickup and delivery dates. Check the maximum insurance coverage offered. You may want to purchase additional insurance if necessary.
- Arrange to rent a storage facility if you plan on storing any of your possessions for any period of time, again looking at insurance policies.
- Contact your bank to arrange transfer of your accounts, order checks with your new address and remove any contents you may have in a safety deposit box.
- Contact your insurance companies to change property, auto and medical policies. Your homeowner’s insurance may be applied to your new residence, or reapplied to the future homeowner’s policy, with prorated payments.
- Submit change-of-address forms to the post office and mail postcards to friends and creditors notifying them of your new address.
- Contact your doctor and other medical providers for your medical records as well as possible referrals to new practitioners near your new home.
- Notify your children’s schools and day care centers, arrange for transfer of their records.
- Organize all important documents in a fire-safe box, including school records, home purchase/sale papers, wills, marriage/divorce papers, pet documents, financial records, stock certificates, social security cards, birth certificates, passports, and backed-up computer files.
- Cancel all subscriptions to newspapers and other publications.
- Arrange for a transport service for pets or automobiles, if needed.
- Research laws and requirements in your new home’s municipality regarding home-based businesses, professional tests, business licenses, and any other special laws that may be applicable.
- Begin gathering boxes, tape, bubble wrap, newspapers, garbage bags, and markers for packing.
Two weeks before the move:
- Contact telephone, electric, gas, water, and disposal companies to discontinue services.
- Hold a garage sale or donate items you are not taking with you to local charitable organizations (i.e. hospitals, nursing homes, day care centers, libraries, and thrift shops). Remember to obtain a receipt for tax purposes.
- Begin packing items that are used less often, numbering and labeling each box and keeping an inventory.
- Clean out all of your cupboards and plan the remainder of the meals you will be eating, so you can pack what you do not need. Also, if possible do not buy any more perishable goods.
- Measure all of the rooms in your new residence and use floor plans to determine where all of your belongings will go.
- Check requirements in your new community for new driver’s licenses, auto registration and tags.
One week before the move:
- Confirm arrangements and dates with moving, storage, auto and pet transportation companies as well as hotel, rental car or temporary housing accommodations.
- Make an inventory list of all of the items that will be going with you personally, such as valuable and irreplaceable items. Or you may want to send such items by insured registered mail.
- Disassemble furniture or other such items, including rugs and draperies.
- Check yard and outdoor buildings, including sheds, shops and garages, for all items to pack.
- Organize a “survival box” for the move, which includes but is not limited to: paper, pens, stamps, envelopes, cellophane and heavy-duty tape, cleaning supplies, scissors, tape measure, paper cups, plastic bags of all sizes, paper plates and towels, plastic utensils, a can opener, facial and toilet tissue, instant coffee or tea, cream and sugar, soap, aspirin, band aids, bottled water, a travel alarm clock, flashlight, a small tools kit, trash bags, snacks or drinks, children’s games, address book, spare car keys.
- Drain gas and oil from lawn mowers, chain saws, snow blowers, gas grills, and kerosene heaters. If transported by van or auto carrier, motorcycles and cars should have as little gas in them as possible.
One or Two days before the move:
- Make sure all household goods are properly packed and boxes clearly labeled by movers, thereby able to be removed from the house in an orderly fashion.
- Clean and defrost all refrigerators and freezers, placing deodorizer inside.
- Reconcile and close bank accounts, unless you are planning to use a different branch of the same bank in your new community.
- Thoroughly clean the home, yard and entire grounds, making sure to pack everything you are taking, that all windows or doors are closed and locked, and all appliances are turned off.
- Gather keys to the house and arrange to leave them with the new owners, a neighbor or relative, or your Coldwell Banker Portland agent. Also, leave your forwarding address and contact information and notify your police department and insurance agent that the home will be empty.
- Record the van driver’s name and confirm the delivery address, directions and delivery date with movers.
- Turn off the water heater and set the thermostat at 55 degrees.
- Supervise movers on where items and boxes should be placed; checking for damaged items and other issues that may have occurred during the moving process. Begin unpacking the essentials first, such as basic kitchen utensils or bath toiletries.
- Check to make sure all of the utilities in the new home are turned on and working properly. Contact a repair person if there are any problems.