Moving to a new state is an exciting time for many reasons, but it can also be really stressful. Although the stress of your upcoming interstate move may seem overwhelming at first, there are many things you can do to make the transition a little easier.
One of the easiest ways to combat moving stress is to make a list of everything you need to do before you pack up and hit the road. If you’re unsure what exactly should go on a moving house checklist, here are some crucial points that you should definitely include.
The 17-Point Moving Checklist for a Safe & Stress-Free Move
1. Book a Moving Company for the Interstate Move
The first step in the long distance moving process is finding, researching, and booking an interstate moving company. Your mover will help you coordinate the logistics of your move, including packing, unpacking, loading and unloading your belongings, as well as driving them to your new home. They can also provide packing materials such as moving boxes, tape, bubble wrap and labels to help you organise and prepare for moving day.
When looking for an interstate removal company in Australia, you’ll be spoilt for options. Many moving companies in Australia have expert removalists who can help you move across state borders stress free.
Do your research and choose one of the best interstate moving companies to give you excellent service at a reasonable price. Make sure to get free quotes to assess if it comes within your moving expenses budget and check for any hidden costs. It’s always better to book the moving company at least two to three weeks before your moving day.
2. Start Packing Early
The packing and planning process is the most time-consuming and stressful part of a move. So here are some packing tips for getting started early and packing all your stuff securely.
- Make an inventory list of all your belongings. Take photos of your items to provide visual proof if the moving company damages or loses something. It will also help you keep track of your possessions during the move.
- Sort out what you want to take with you and decide what you can leave behind or sell/donate. If you have several large items that don’t fit in your new home, try to dispose of them as soon as possible.
- Collect packing supplies and empty containers that will be appropriate for your possessions. For example, if you have breakables, use a sufficient amount of bubble wrap and packing paper; use wardrobe moving boxes if you’re moving clothes. Similarly, choose the best packing materials based on the things you have.
3. Confirm Your Moving Arrangements with the Real Estate Agent
Whether buying or selling a home when moving interstate, it’s always good to verify all of your moving arrangements with the real estate agent. If you’re selling your home, confirm that you are ready to move out by packing everything up and making sure that your home is clean for potential buyers.
If you are buying a home, make sure you have accommodations set up for when you arrive in your new location, like where your house keys are. Talk to your estate agent to get things cleared up and ready for your move date.
4. Complete a Change-of-Address Form with the Australia Post
Informing the Australia Post about your new address should be at the top of your to do list. Ensure that all your mail gets rerouted to your new address by filing a Change of Address form at the Australia Post at least two weeks before your moving date. You can do this online or by filling out a printed form at the post office, either in person or online.
5. Notify Other Local Authorities of Your New Address
Local authorities (for instance, the police department, fire department, Australian Electoral Commission and the local council) need to know where you live so they can send you correspondence and provide services to you as needed.
Make sure to go through all the important local government institutions you need to inform to make sure that you don’t miss anything out. Contact all relevant agencies to update your address records as soon as possible after moving day at least a week or two before you move out.
6. Cancel Or Transfer Utilities
If you’re moving house, contact your utility companies to have service shut off at your old home and turned back on at your new home (if it’s not already). If you’re moving into an apartment or condo building, this step may not be necessary; many landlords include utility costs in the rent and handle them themselves.
Whatever the circumstance, make sure to contact the landlord to inquire about the utility facilities in your new house and get it set up before your moving day.
7. Transfer Bank Accounts
One of the essential things in your interstate checklist is transferring bank accounts. If you have savings accounts or other accounts in your previous state, you need to arrange for these accounts to be transferred. Even if you don’t use them right away, they must be moved into the local branch to be easily accessible when needed.
Also, if you plan to switch over to an entirely new bank once you move, ensure that you have access to funds during the moving process and until you can open an account with a local bank. Similarly, inform other financial institutions like credit card companies about your change of address.
8. Inform People About Your Move
When thinking about moving interstate, the first thing you need to do is inform friends and family about your relocation.
If you want people to know where to find you after the move, inform them about the interstate move in advance and give them your new contact details and your moving date. In addition, it’s essential that your mail arrives at your new home, so make sure to change your address properly.
9. Arrange For Childcare or Pet Care
On moving day, the last thing you’ll want to worry about is your children or pets getting in the way of movers. If possible, have them stay with a family member or a friend who lives close by so you can concentrate on your move. If that isn’t possible, plan activities for them during the move in another move so they will stay out of your way and won’t get hurt during the interstate move.
This way, they will not get in the way and they will be out of harm’s way while packing boxes are being moved around and loaded into the moving truck.
10. Pack an Essentials Box
You’ll need to make sure you have everything you need for the first day at your new home. Before you start packing up things that belong in your old home, it’s a good idea to prepare an “essentials box” for the day after you move. This box should contain essential items — toiletries, food, first aid kit, bottled water, toothbrushes, pain relievers, toilet paper, shampoo and soap, paper plates and plastic utensils, flashlight and phone charger.
If you have kids or pets with you, you may need to pack an overnight bag separately to include their clothes, diapers, food, and toys.
11. Plan Ahead for Meals on Moving Day
Pack non-perishable food items and coolers with beverages in an easily accessible place. Also, make plans for after your move is over. You can always have some handy snacks to eat on a moving day. This is especially essential to plan ahead when you have kids at home.
12. Have a Handy List of Documents
When you’re moving interstate, there are a few official documents that you may need during or just after the transit time. When you bury these documents along with the rest of your luggage, it can be hard to retrieve them quickly. So make sure to have the following essential documents (or at least a copy of it) with you:
- A copy of your insurance policy
- A copy of your lease
- A list of phone numbers and emergency contacts, including all family members who will be staying in the new home with you
- An itemised list of all household bills, including the electric bill and any recurring monthly payments, such as cable or Internet service
- A list of all medications, vitamins and supplements you’ll need, including their dosages, along with the medical records
- A list of any household services that will be needed for moving or settling in (i.e., landscaping, pool cleaning, housekeeping)
- Any vital paperwork you’ll need to prove your new residence (i.e., deed information, name of homeowners’ association)
- Any important documents that should be kept in a secure location during this time and can be delivered to your new home later
13. Make Copies of Important Documents
You’ll have a lot of essential documents like educational certificates, medical records, school records, house deeds, driver’s license and a lot more. It’s important to make duplicate copies of all these documents and keep them separately from the originals before your big move.
Also, make sure to carry these documents with you when you’re moving house rather than sending them away in the moving truck.
14. Fill Prescriptions and Restock Medications
You don’t want to run out of prescriptions while you’re in the middle of moving. Even if your new home is in the same city, there may be a delay between filling a prescription and receiving medication, so it’s best not to wait until you move.
If you have pets, make sure they’re up to date on their medications as well. You’ll be busy enough after your move without worrying about your health.
If your insurance plan covers out-of-state doctors, call them and get a list of nearby physicians at your new address. If not, you’ll need to find a new doctor once you’ve moved.
15. Prepare Fragile Items for Transport
Pack jewellery, collectables, medication and other fragile items in a separate box with clear labelling and secure packing supplies. You may also want to use plastic lined boxes along with bubble wraps for better safety.
If you’re moving by yourself instead of hiring professional moving companies, you’ll likely want to keep your most valuable items close by during transit. So make sure to pack these pricey personal items like jewellery and take them with you in the car instead of keeping them with the moving truck’s cargo.
16. Back-Up All Important Digital Files
If you have irreplaceable photos or documents on your computer or tablet, ensure they’re backed up online before your move. If possible, backup all of the files on your computer and store them on a cloud storage account like Google Drive or Dropbox. This way, if something happens to your hardware during a move, you won’t lose your important files.
17. Schedule for Cleaning
If you have time after packing and sending off your stuff for the long distance move, you can try to clean your home. This is important, especially when you’re renting out or leasing out since it can affect the amount of security deposit you get.
On the other hand, you can also schedule professional cleaners to do the job perfectly since they have industry-grade cleaning supplies to make your house look spick and span.
Many also prefer to have their new house cleaned before they move in. If so, make sure to book the home cleaners ahead of the moving day so that the new home is ready for you on your moving day.
A great way to stay on top of your move is by using a handy printable version of this moving interstate checklist. It’ll help you keep track of your tasks, from the big jobs to the small ones that might slip through the cracks.
Use our free interactive moving house checklist as a guide for planning your move to get started on your big move.