A tenants guide to moving home

A Tenants Guide To Moving Home

You’ve found your new home but there’s still plenty to do before you move, from packing to redirecting post. It can be quite daunting. So here’s a guide to moving home for tenants. I hope you find it helpful.

Guide To Moving Home – the first steps

Serve notice to your landlord or agent

If you rent through a reputable agent or landlord, they’ll book a pre exit inspection.  This is a really useful meeting where they will come along with the original inventory and agree with you jobs that will need to be carried out prior to you leaving your property. 

Put your move date on your calendar.

If you’re local, you may want to block out a few days, so you don’t have to move in one mad rush in one day. 

Notify your phone and/or broadband supplier

You often have to give at least 1 months notice if you wish to cancel either of these services and get them set up at your new property.  Also, in the case of a phone line, you may want to take your number with you.

Consider a pay as you go mobile broadband dongle. This will be really useful if you discover your broadband connection might be delayed beyond your move in date.  It won’t be any good for streaming but will at least mean you can keep in touch with any emails and be able to access documents should you use cloud storage.  If you only have to wait for a couple of days, another option would be to set your mobile up as a hotspot.

If you have pets, maybe consider asking a friend to have them for a couple of days. They’re likely to get distressed with the changes going on around them and may try to escape if they’re too stressed.

Removal costs and planning

Get quotes from a removal or van hire company. Book the date.

Start collecting or buy removal boxes.  You can buy good packs from Argos and B&Q, plus on-line at Amazon.

Organise your post redirection.  You’ll need to give at least 5 days notice.

Deep clean and decorate where possible in advance.  Or if you’ve given yourself a few days to move, its often easier to wait until everything is out of the property before decorating and cleaning.  Items to focus on: Walls, carpets/floors, window frames, windows, inside of cupboards, skirting boards. 

If you have a garden, now would be a good time to tidy it up.  Throw away any items you’ll no longer require mow the lawn and weed. 

De-clutter before you start packing

Moving is a perfect time to de-clutter. Before you start packing, go through every room and decide what’s worth keeping.  Then you can drop off items that you no longer require at the local charity shop or sell it on ebay.

A tenats guide to moving home
What and how to pack

Now you can start packing

Make a list of ‘moving day essentials’. This will be the things you know you’ll need on the day of the move.  Then make sure these items are easy to access. Here’s a list to get your started:

  • Cleaning products, including bin bags and your vacuum cleaner
    Phone and laptop plus their chargers
  • Kettle, mugs, tea, milk, coffee, sugar, biscuits (necessary in my world!)
  • Loo roll, kitchen roll
  • Bedding for the first night
  • Maybe a change of clothes.
  • Notepad and pen because you’ll constantly be remembering things that still need doing.
  • Torch, because you may need to go looking for the fuse box or rummage around in the garden shed at 10pm.
  • Tool box or at the very least a screwdriver
  • Spare boxes and packing tape, ffor the things you might have forgotten to pack.
  • Temporary furniture – inflatable bed, deck chairs etc
  • Bottle opener and maybe a bottle of something nice to go with it!

Also, make sure you keep handy any important documents that you might need on the day such as your rental agreement or drivers licence (very important if you’ll be renting a vehicle for moving).

Pack up rooms that you use the least first.

Mark up all the boxes as you pack them with either room names that they’ll be going into, or a summary of items in them if they don’t yet have an allocated room. 

A tenants guide to moving
Moving Day

On your moving day

Once everything is out of your old home, do a final clean. 

Then when you’ve finished with your ‘moving day essentials’ at your old property, pack them and mark up the box so you know to open these first at your new home.

Take meter readings of the following at both your old and new properties. You might find it easier to take photos, this has the added bonus of a timestamp:

  • Electric
  • Water
  • Gas

Leave out any useful documents or notes for ingoing tenants.

If you’ve given yourself an overlap between properties, over the next few days you’ll be able to decorate and clean your old home to get it to the standard you’ve previously agreed with your agent/landlord.

Notify your agent. Once you’re satisfied with how the property looks, let your agent know, so they can book in a final checkout meeting and read the meters.

In your new home

Check the inventory your agent/landlord has given you.  Its always good to do this before you start unpacking.  If you notice anything that’s not been picked up by them, take a photo or make a note of it and notify them of any issues within 7 days of your move in date.

Check all the lights and taps to be sure everything is working.

Once you’ve got everything in the property, unpack room by room, starting with the kitchen, this is always the most tricky room.  Don’t feel you have to unpack every box on day one.  Sometimes its easier a few days later when you have a better feel for where certain items should go.

If you haven’t already been told, look for and make a note of where the following are:

  • Stopcock (valve for controlling the main water supply)
  • Instructions for appliances
  • Gas, electricity and water meters, location and readings
  • Thermostat
  • Fuse box

Check that the smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are working.  These should have been tested by your agent but its always wise to double check yourself. 

Make up the beds before you get too tired to do so.

Put your feet up~!

Finally, book a takeaway, open that bottle and put your feet up.  take the rest of the night off – you’re home 😊

Guide to Moving Home – Your first full day in your new home

Hopefully you’ll wake on nice and refreshed and not aching too much.  Now is a good time to start getting all your accounts organised.   So put the kettle on, crack open the digestives, get yourself comfy and start emailing or phoning.

Here’s who you’ll need to contact to notify them of your change of address and settle any bills if necessary:  

  • Council for council tax and electoral roll
  • Utility suppliers with your readings from both your old and new homes.
  • Your place of work
  • Your bank, insurance, pension and credit card companies
  • TV Licensing
  • Doctor and dentist
  • DVLA
  • National Insurance / DSS offices

Make sure you update all your online accounts such as Amazon and ebay.  You’re likely to order new things in the first couple of weeks of moving and you won’t want them going to your old address in error.

Finally notify friends and family.  An easy option would be to set up a Whatapp or Facebook group. This means you’ll only have to send one message and keep it private from those you don’t want to know your address.

And Finally – Enjoy your new home

I hope this tenant guide to moving home has helped you with your planning. Please let me know if you think I’ve missed anything out.

About the Author:

Deborah – from CAM Residential Lettings. Hayle, Cornwall.

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