Moving checklist & Removals Advice

The first thing to decide is whether to hire a van and move yourself or use the services of a professional removals company. Doing it you will most likely be cheaper but it will depend of how much you have to move and how far you’ve got to go.

If you do decide to use a professional removals firm, get a few quotes in first and choose a moving company with whom you can communicate effectively (the unanswered mobile phone number can be very frustrating if it’s the only point of contact given.)

Companies that are BAR (British Association of Removers) registered are likely to be highly professional, but always obtain written quotes from several removal firms. Get references and check the limits of their insurance cover.

Many firms will also do the packing for you and most can provide packing crates and boxes.

If there are any items you don’t want to take, rather than throw them away ask relatives and friends if they want anything, give the stuff to charities, or organise a garage sale.

If you have small children or pets you may have to organise care for them so they are out of harm’s way while everything is being removed from the house.

Make arrangements to ensure the removal van can access your current and future home. Tell neighbours that the van will be parking outside your house and get any permits if they are needed.

If you will be packing yourself, start a few weeks before the moving day and go through everything systematically. Label moving boxes clearly and pack essential items only in the last few days.

Notify gas, electric, and water companies in advance that you are changing address and don’t forget to take final meter readings for each before you leave.

Check your home insurance and make sure you have cover for your new home and you property is ‘on risk’ from the appropriate date (check this with your solicitor).

De-register from your doctor, dentist and optician if you're moving out of the area and arrange for your post to be forwarded (you will be charged a fee for this service).

It is also handy to have the answers to the following questions to make life easier when you finally have moved in. You may need to get them from the previous owner as it’s unlikely that any survey will tell you:

  • Where's the main stopcock (to shut off the water)?
  • Where are the gas and electricity meters (read them as soon as you get in)
  • Where’s the fuse box or ELCB consumer unit?
  • Which company supplies the energy, broadband and home phone?