If you’re about to embark on an interstate move, it’s important to plan ahead. The logistics of moving out of state are far more complicated than the typical in-town move. To help your move go more smoothly, here are seven things you should do before moving out of state.
1. Research and Compare Professional Movers
It’s prudent to comparison shop before settling on a mover for your out-of-state move. Consult reviews and ratings from review websites like Yelp, Facebook, or Angie’s List. Consult your social media networks; your friends, relatives, and colleagues can be a valuable source of information as well. Try to book a mover at least a month or two before your planned moving date.
2. Get a Jump on Packing
Even if you get help with your packing duties, there are some things that you will want to take care of yourself, such as valuable, irreplaceable items (jewelry and other heirlooms, for example). Valuables should be kept with you during the moving process – never pass these off to hired movers.
Take photos or videos of your things before you start packing so you have evidence for insurance purposes in case something happens during your move. It’s wise to start the packing process about a month out from your move date. Start by packing infrequently used items, saving rooms like the kitchen for last.
3. Remember to Forward Your Mail
While many of the people in your life likely communicate with you via email, it’s important to remember that your U.S. postal mail must be forwarded to your new address. Go to your local post office and fill out the change of address form to forward mail, or simply fill one out online. This should be done at least a week ahead of time. Some mail may still arrive at your old house for a while, so ask a trust neighbor to keep an eye out for mail once you’ve moved out of state. Check in a couple of times the month after your move to see if they’ve received anything at your old address.
4. Notify Utilities of Your Move
You’ll need to arrange to turn off gas, electric, water service, and other utilities at your former address. Additionally, you’ll need to discontinue or transfer your paid TV and cable services to the new address. Before the move, arrange for essential services to be turned on at your new home before your arrival. Water and electricity will definitely come in handy on moving day.
5. Research Local Amenities
You won’t know your way around town like you do in your old home, so take some time to research things in the new neighborhood, like restaurants and movie theaters. If your family is devoted to fitness, find a new gym now (if you already belong to a national chain, this should be an easy task). Depending on your specific needs, you may want to investigate local schools, doctors, supermarkets, church or temple, and so on.
6. Know How to Get Emergency Help
You likely know the location of the fire and police departments that serve your current home. Find out these details for your new home before moving so you will have peace of mind about knowing where the first responders are in your new city.
7. Find Local Service Providers
Something might break at your new home shortly after moving in, so it pays to have some contact information for companies that can help you out. As you did research to find movers, you should also comparison shop for local repair firms, handymen, plumbers, electricians, HVAC specialists, and any other professionals that you might need to contact once you’ve settled in.
With all the stress that can occur when moving from one state to another, the more preparation you can do before moving day, the better. By following these 7 tips, you’ll be in better shape to handle unexpected issues and enjoy life in your new home.