Moving out for the first time is considered to be the biggest organisational challenge of your lifetime. Therefore, the last thing you want is to be caught off guard when that time comes, and the professional moving teams of Fantastic Services will make sure this is not going to happen.

Below, you will find a comprehensive list of helpful tips for moving out for the first time. With some luck, they will turn the endeavour into a less stressful and organised experience.

Table of Contents:

3 Months Before the Move

1. Stay calm

A systematic packing and wrapping process increases your efficiency on the day of the moving.  The responsibilities you’ll need to take on will be too many to count, so you better have a plan and passion for getting things done. Extra nerves, haste, irritability, unwillingness, and many other negative feelings will be an inevitable part of this day.

2. Organise

Invest in a huge notebook that can hold anything from checklists to vital invoices. Make sure you’ll be able to hold important documents in the notebook as well. Having a book dedicated to the move will make the process of going through the “to do list” much more easier.

3. Calculate moving costs

Being financially prepared for the move is yet another thing you need to take under consideration. Think carefully about everything that can cost you money, regardless if you are hiring professional removal services or plan on moving out on your own. There are a lot of expenses that need to be considered.

4. Inform friends and family

Contact all your family members and spread the news about your move. This might prove to be quite a tricky move, but it’s also a smart one because hey, you never know – you might just be able to convince them to help you out during the moving day!

5. Change your address

Change your address before you leave the old place. Notify your current gas, electricity, and water suppliers, as well as your local council and bank tax of your moving date. If you are moving out of the country, don’t forget about your credit cards, bank accounts, magazine subscriptions, and mail. Inform your new local council so you could vote at your new address. Register here.

6. Hire a moving company

If you are too busy and don’t have the time to deal with all the hassle, hire a professional removal company instead. It may turn out to be a more cost-effective solution and it will definitely save you a lot of time.

Many movers come with insurance, however, they won’t be responsible for items that aren’t packed by them so you might consider booking additionally a packing service.  Insurance is important. If you are moving by yourself, you may want to purchase it separately. Book at least two weeks in advance.

If you do hire movers, be sure to read the fine print and find out if they have any unusual rules. Avoid moving on Fridays and bank holidays when removal firms are in high demand and will be stretched out (and may charge more). For a less stressful move, opt for off-peak times, such as mid-week.

7. De-clutter

Throw, give away, donate, or sell the stuff you won’t need at your new place. There are lots of ways to get rid of certain types of clutter.

  • Sell highly valuable items online. If you own items that are too valuable to just give away, make use of eBay or Amazon.
  • Be charitable. Arrange for a charity organisation to come and pick up the items you don’t want. Do it a week or two before the move. It’ll save you the trouble of having to take it there yourself.
  • Dispose of hazardous materials. Dispose of all flammable items that can’t be transported (paint, chemicals, aerosol cans).

Decluttering your home will not only lighten the load of your move, but it would give you peace of mind. The fewer items you have, the fewer things to worry about. Most people in the UK have too much clutter to deal with,  so it’s important to know how to declutter your life.

8. Ask for help

Helpers can be split up into shifts! If you succeed to acquire enough helping hands, divide them into groups. For example, you can ask the first one to show up in the morning, and the second one – to help you move when you get to your new home.

9. Treat your helpers

Give your friends first dibs on anything you originally planned to sell or donate. Food supplies that would have been a pain to move to the new place are another reasonable option. However, if you don’t have anything to sell or donate, consider buying a small gift to thank them for all the help.

1 Month Before the Move

10. Notify landlord

If you are currently renting, notify your landlord by using the proper notice. Otherwise, your tenancy may not end legally. Check your tenancy agreement for details and information about your deposit protection. You can also check directly with the three deposit protection schemes.

11. Check with providers

Give your current TV/broadband/phone providers your leaving date and don’t forget to arrange new services for your new home either on your moving day or a day or two afterwards.

12. Stop by the post office

Inform the local post office of your move and arrange a redirection service for your mail. By taking such measures, you won’t miss out on a single envelope in your post box. It will also give you more time to contact relevant companies to let them know of your change of circumstances.

13. Buy packing supplies

Grouping items together would be much easier with a stretch wrapper. It will also help you protect your furniture from getting scuffed and scratched.

  • bubble wrap;
  • moving boxes;
  • tissue paper;
  • tape;
  • fabric blankets;
  • labels;
  • ink markers;
  • small plastic bags;
  • tape dispenser.

14. Pack

If you decided to pack by yourself, you could use some help from your friends and family. Just make sure it’s at least a week before the move. Pack early, starting with the items you won’t be using the following month.

  • Vacuum seal clothing. When vacuumed, clothes will take less space and will be a piece of cake to organise when it’s time for packing. Off-season-clothes can go directly into the storage at the new place.
  • Use a colouring system. Pick a colour code for each room and label that room’s boxes accordingly. Label the door of each room with the corresponding sticker or tape. Doing so will simplify the whole process and the movers won’t be asking any stupid questions. In addition, attach a note to each box with its contents.
  • Protect from leakages. Cover the openings of your toiletries with a saran wrap, then put the tops back on. This will keep your toiletries from breaking and leaking all over your stuff during the move.
  • Plates go vertically. If you want your fragile plates to be better protected, arrange them vertically, like records.
  • Cut down on boxes. Make all of your baskets, laundry bins, hampers, and suitcases work for you. You can pack them with different stuff and if you have wheeled suitcases, you can use those for the heavy things.
  • Pack intelligently. The heavier the item, the smaller the box. This guarantees stability, and it’s also easier on the person carrying the box. Boxes shouldn’t be heavier than 20 kilos.

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15. Electronic connections

If dealing with your e-connections is a complicated and confusing task for you, take a photo of how your electronics are connected so you can remember how and where all the wires go.

1 Week Before the Move

16. Last grocery trip

Put your groceries to good use before the move. Plan your last meals accordingly to avoid leaving any leftovers. The more food you end up using before moving out, the less you’ll have to throw away. Do the last grocery trip two weeks prior to the move. Buy only the most important products to you and remember to predict what you’ll need to prepare in order to have something to eat on the day of the move.

17. Pack an overnight bag

Pack an overnight bag containing all the essentials. You’ll want your essentials within easy reach: changing clothes and toiletries is always necessary. It’s also a great way to transport a laptop, which could otherwise run the risk of getting stolen or broken during a move.

  • Kettle with tea/coffee;
  • Bottles of water;
  • Food and cutlery;
  • Towel;
  • Bin bags;
  • Gloves;
  • Washing liquid;
  • Rags;
  • Shampoo.

18. Hold a farewell party

Organise a barbecue night in your garden for your neighbours. Being remembered with the taste of the burgers you have prepared is a thing to be proud of. Furthermore, throwing a party in your backyard may help you find a helping hand for the day of the move.

19. Hire a babysitter

If you have small kids, arrange someone to take care of them. You might possibly need a babysitter for the night as well – who knows how long the moving day will last?

20. Hire a pet sitter

Another thing you don’t want to be worrying about during the moving process is losing track of your pets. On this stressful day, hiring someone to look after your pets is a huge advantage. But, if you prefer to move house with them, here is how gentle to be with cats.

21. Plants have special needs

A few weeks before the move, transplant plants from your breakable pots (the movers can pack and transport those) into lighter-weight unbreakable ones that will be easier for you to move. If it turns out you can’t move your plants, donate them to friends, a botany class, or a local retirement home.

22. Find a parking spot

Think in advance about a parking spot at your new place on the day of the move. This is a must, especially if you are hiring a removal company to take care of your stuff.

23. Prime your new home before moving in

If possible, take a day before the move to inspect your new home and assess the upgrades and improvements that are needed to be done. If you have the time, pre-clean the bathroom and kitchen. Put up a new shower curtain liner and stock up on some new bath towels and toilet paper as well. You’ll want to take a hot shower after a long day of moving.

24. Research new accounts

Closing your old accounts won’t be enough. If you are moving to a new area, you have to spend some time researching the banks, doctors, schools, etc. in the new region to pick the best among them. Gather all the proper paperwork you need to set up your new accounts.

25. Car service and registration

Has your car been checked and serviced, especially if you are moving far away? Contact the DVLA to change your Driving License, as well as your Vehicle Registration Certificate.

26. Take care of your health

Fill up on prescriptions and make sure that everyone has packed medications they need in their suitcase. Your health is the most important thing here, not the move.


1 Day Before the Move

27. Last call

Consult your plan or your moving company one last time to confirm that everyone is on the same page. Re-confirm the moving-day arrival time, as well as cell phone numbers and last-minute details. It won’t hurt ask again if the movers would move all your items. Misunderstandings happen. Click here to learn about some things professional movers would NOT move.

28. Defrost the refrigerator

There is no way to skip the refrigerator when talking about groceries. Defrost the home of all your supermarket goods at least a day before moving and wipe up any remaining liquids. Otherwise, the sticky and wet, the mess will end up as yet another task for you to do.

29. Pay all bills

The last thing you want to be dealing with is old unpaid electricity or any other monthly expenses.  Utilities should be turned off in your current home one day after your move out. Conversely, it’s a good idea to turn the utilities in your new home on one day before your move in.

30. Clean your old place

Hire a company that is specialized in move out cleaning, to come in and do a quick clean after the movers leave or schedule a day when you will come back to make sure that everything is clean and in place for the new owners. With Fantastic Services, you can combine both end of tenancy and removals service a special deal price.

31. Cash in

Unfortunately, things can go wrong anytime, so make sure that you have enough cash, checks, or a credit card to pay for any unexpected expenses. Also, withdraw some cash to tip the movers when they’re done (if you are using a man with a van or removals).

32. Delay deliveries

If you’ve made some new purchases, such as a couch or a dining room suite, schedule the delivery after the moving day, and of course, change the address.

33. Share your experience

Why not leave a little instruction or experience manual for the new owners? Let them know when the bins are collected and how to set the hot water timer. It may be useful to collate any necessary instructions for the appliances you are leaving behind.

34. Leave contacts

Put together a packet for the new owners of your home with any warranties, vendor recommendations, and a note with your contact information in case they have questions or need to forward you an email.

35. Charge your phone

Make sure you charge your mobile phone the night before the move. You might need to make some calls or use the GPS, which will drain your battery life. Nowadays, mobile phones are an important part of our lives and it will be an advantage if the top right corner of your screen shows 100%.

Moving Day

After all those preparations, it’s easy to assume that everything is done, and now you just have to wait until you arrive at your destination. But there are a few things that should be taken care of on moving day.

  • Take metre readings. On moving day, take metre readings of the property you are about to leave and submit them to your local suppliers. Take a photograph of your metres on your mobile phone.
  • Load the moving van strategically. When loading the truck, load all of your furniture and other heavy items first, then follow up with your boxes and bags. If there’s anything you’ll need right away at the new place, save it until the very end.
  • Hold valuables and documents. Gather valuable paperwork, jewellery, and small family heirlooms. Keep these special items separate from your moving boxes and transport them by hand or via a trackable and insured shipping service.
  • Avoid rush hour. There can be a moving “traffic jam” at certain times of the year. The most reputable movers get booked early during the late spring and summer months when half of all moving takes place, so plan ahead!
  • Take photos of your cleaned out new home. If you’re renting, take photos of your cleaned-out old new home before moving in. This is essential if you ever hope to get your deposit back.

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Once you’ve moved to your new place, it’s always a good idea to make friends with your new neighbours. Making a good first impression always helps. You can always throw a party in order to get to know everyone. Forget about the burgers from number 16 and try cooking something more classy.

Picture source: Solis Images /

  • Last update: April 8, 2019

Posted in Moving and Packing Tips

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