Tasks for Moovin'... On a Sunday Afternoon
May 5, 2021 4:10 PM   Subscribe

Besides the obvious, what other tasks do my spouse and I need to do before (and shortly after) we move to a new (to us) home at the end of the month?

I'd appreciate any additional advice or tasks that we may be forgetting besides the basics (renting a u-haul, packing, activating and cancelling utilities, changing our mailing addresses for all of our bills/CC/etc).

Some of the advice here on the green for how to pack is helpful.

.Odd tasks like updating our voter registration and getting new spare house keys made and giving them to our designated people are the types of answers that I'm looking for here

A couple small things/snowflake details:
we're not hiring movers
we're moving about 5 miles from our current place
no kids
we're renting (the new place)
posted by fizzix to Home & Garden (13 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I just moved a week ago. My biggest mistake was not doing a thorough cleaning before all my stuff was in. So either have it done prior or have all the supplies you need to do a cleaning before you start bringing things in. In my case the unit was unoccupied for a long time so it was really bad dust wise but the principle is still true.
posted by artificialard at 4:18 PM on May 5, 2021 [3 favorites]

I regret not taking more plants with us when we move.

If I was moving 5 miles away, I would move like, a room at a time, in an uncovered trailer, over like, a week. Slow and steady!

Don't forget to eat, pizza is a pretty solid moving snack. My mom had this trick when we moved of a big jar of cookies, and whenever we needed a break we would eat one in the new kitchen to make us think happy thoughts about the new place.

I prefer to introduce myself to neighbors ASAP, but many may approach you when you are moving in. Try to make a good first impression! Take the opportunity to exchange numbers and tell them about your pets (in case they escape) or relevant hobbies (to get invited to a bbq/poker night). Getting the number is key; you may have a question in 2 months, but haven't seen them since then.

Don't forget to tell apple maps and google maps where your new home is. I STILL have problems with google thinking I'm 2 states away when I'm trying to navigate home from a new spot in town.

Find rituals that appeal to you. Some people like to sleep on the bare floor of their old house, to seal it into memory. Some people like to sleep on the floor of the new house, to bond with it and to add the excitement (or, for me, because for some reason my FURNITURE IS NEVER THERE YET NO MATTER WHAT I DO). Some people like to burn some smoke around the corners to spook off weird smells and spirits. Some people throw a little party and drink Champaign. Think about what sounds the most fun to you!
posted by bbqturtle at 4:20 PM on May 5, 2021 [6 favorites]

Best answer: It sounds stupid, but make sure your very first trip to the new place includes toilet paper. There is nothing worse than really having to pee in the new house and realizing there's no TP.
posted by cgg at 4:25 PM on May 5, 2021 [10 favorites]

Best answer: Take photos before you move in, especially if there's any existing damage. You don't want your landlord to try and ding you for them when you eventually move out.

Take photos of your old place once it's empty so your old landlord can't try to claim damage that isn't there.
posted by burntflowers at 4:27 PM on May 5, 2021 [5 favorites]

Update your address with the DMV. You don’t need to order a new license if you don’t wanna, but that’s your official address as far as most states are concerned, and will be linked to your license #.

Be careful about autofills and saved info on shopping sites! I mistakenly sent a large online order to my old place, and boy was it a pain.
posted by kapers at 5:16 PM on May 5, 2021 [5 favorites]

If you have a smart thermostat or any smart devices staying at the old home, sign out and clear everything. Have medications, box openers, food, and any other essential daily items in a go bag or easily findable location.
posted by hellogoodbye at 5:28 PM on May 5, 2021

I always end up moving my refrigerator contents last, so perhaps load up the new fridge with some drinks, snacks, etc so that you're not hangry while you're moving things in.
posted by sacrifix at 5:46 PM on May 5, 2021

I have a box (or two) of all the things I'll need/want for the first night and the next morning, separate from your other packing. Your coffee stuff, pillows and linens, snacks, etc. I like to have a bottle of wine (don't forget corkscrew and glasses) and fancy bath stuff (don't forget towels). Candles (and light bulbs!). An extension cord, maybe. You don't want to be digging through various boxes after a day of moving, and you'll want to start your first morning with comforting rituals. Good luck!
posted by cyndigo at 8:58 PM on May 5, 2021 [1 favorite]

I keep a list of all the services that have my address, so I can remember whom to inform.

USPS sells your info to advertisers when you request permanent mail forwarding, but not with temporary mail forwarding (up to 6 months). Not sure if this has changed since the last time I checked, but I'm really on top of my address change game, so 6 months is fine for me.

While still at my old place, I try to kill off all the junk mail, esp the ones addressed specifically to me, so I can minimize worrying about future tenants receiving my info.

Totally agree with super anal-retentive move in/out photos. Take them AND send them to your landlord. Also be super, super meticulous with your move-in checklist - no bit of damage is too small to list.

Keep receipts for all the moving supplies. Anything unused can be returned.

Back up any important devices before the move. You never know what will get dropped/damaged/lost/misplaced/etc in transit.
posted by aquamvidam at 9:50 PM on May 5, 2021 [2 favorites]

If your new place has a shower rod and not shower doors, make sure you have (and put up) a shower curtain and liner before your first morning.

Make sure you have hand soap/liquid soap for the bathroom and kitchen, plus dish soap.

New library cards, if your short move takes you out of your county. (Otherwise, be sure to update your address online so you don't miss any notices.)

Treat yourself to new bathmats. It'll feel luxurious.

If you order food from a delivery place like Door Dash or have your address in a specific restaurant's records, because to update. Nothing worse than sending a good meal to your old place!
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 10:55 PM on May 5, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: +1 for taking your old address out of your browser's auto complete, and any favorite online food/retail. Do you have any preorders/kickstarters/recurring orders to update?

If you've got ceiling lights, consider upgrading the bulbs to LEDs - your landlord doesn't care about the electricity bill but you probably do

If it's summer where you are, highly recommend a flat of bottled water for moving day

Email friends/family the new address

+1 for move in/move out photos, even if your landlord seems super chill now, and a written list of any damage. Every time I've skimped on this I've regretted it

Any temporary upgrades to the old place you want to reclaim: nicer door knobs or cabinet knobs, lightbulbs, other affixed stuff

If you've got drawers in your kitchen or elsewhere, look under them for lost items
posted by february at 7:46 AM on May 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

The first thing I do when moving into a new house is put gloves on, remove the toilet seat and throw it straight in the trash, clean the toilet very thoroughly indeed, then put a brand new toilet seat on.

As you're not using movers, move the your stuff in order of weight, heaviest first, if you can. That way as the day wears on and you're getting tired the stuff left to move will be lighter and lighter.

If you've given spare keys to your current place to a friend/family member/neighbour, get them back to give to your current landlord. Conversely, check with your new landlord that they have ALL of the keys to your new house in case the previous tenants gave a spare to someone. Ideally change the locks, if you're allowed, as soon as you can afford to. The sense of security of knowing that some random person doesn't have a key to your house is worth it. If you're not allowed to change the locks, install a bolt on the front and back doors for the same purpose.
posted by underclocked at 9:33 AM on May 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

Before you move in, clean everything, vacuum, etc

If you like to line your shelves with lining paper, do that

Make sure you know where you packed to bedding and towels

For me, if I can make my bed, brush my teeth, take a shower and make coffee on the first day/nigh, I'm set
posted by biscuits at 11:02 AM on May 6, 2021

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