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A Not-So-Small Moving Checklist

If you’re planning a small move, you might be thinking “small” isn’t exactly how you’d describe it. Apartment and urban moves carry their own, unique stressors - like finding appropriate parking for the moving truck or getting your mattress up to the eleventh floor. As more people flock to America’s cities, small and urban moves are becoming a bigger deal. Below you’ll find a complete moving checklist to help minimize the apprehension surrounding your small move.

Give your landlord notice. Take a look at your lease and note other required tasks you’ll need to complete prior to vacating. Make plans for transportation. If you plan to partner with a moving company, start searching. Make a floor plan, and get a general idea of where you’ll want things to go in your new place. This will help you determine what stays and what goes. Decide which items you’ll keep, discard, or give away. If you’ve got a lot of stuff you don’t plan to take, plan a moving sale to rake in some extra cash. Donate the rest to charity. Be mindful of your grocery shopping. Try to use up as much of your existing food as possible. Check your renter’s insurance policy. Is moving covered? Make any necessary adjustments to your policy to ensure you’re covered in your new apartment.

Learn how to host a successful moving sale here

Get everything squared away with the post office. You can access the change-of-address form here. If you plan to use a moving company, make that decision now, and proceed with the following: Confirm dates. Complete and in-home estimate. Tell your representative about special items you need moved or additional services you may require. Use up non-allowables or give them away. Check with your mover to verify a list of items that cannot be transported. Think: hazardous items that could compromise the safe transport of your belongings, such as gasoline. Pack up. Start with the stuff you don’t use as often, and save frequently used items for last.

Access the change of address form here

Make and confirm travel reservations. Return any items you’ve borrowed – library books, movies, your friend Lindsay’s clutch. Arrange for your utilities to be disconnected in your old place and reconnected in your new one. Figure out the parking situation for the moving truck at your old and new apartment complexes. Start by consulting your apartment complex manager – he or she has been around the block a few times. If you live in a congested, urban setting, you may have to inquire about temporary permits from the city. Notify your new landlord or apartment complex manager of your move-in date. Inquire about elevator access, or even better, ask if the complex has a freight elevator available. Figure out if your complex has security measure in place you’ll need to be aware of beforehand. Request time off from work. Forward your medical records, if necessary.
  
Reconfirm details with your mover, and request contact information. Transfer bank accounts, if necessary. Reconfirm travel plans. Take out cash. If you’re paying for your own move, have your payment ready. Set aside items you’ll need on-hand during the move: medications and important papers, GPS, first aid kit, flashlight, etc. Check your lease to see if a final walk through is required, and schedule a time with your apartment complex manager.
  
Pack items you’ll need asap last, so they’re loaded last. Include: Cleaning supplies. Toiletries. Coffee pot. Towels. Kitchen necessities. Defrost, clean, and dry the fridge if you plan to take it with you. Decide which non-perishable food items you want to take and consider donating what you don’t. Our friends at Move For Hunger partner with moving companies all over the United States to help people donate leftover non-perishable food items to local food banks during a move. Learn more about Move For Hunger here.

Learn more about Move For Hunger here.

If required per your lease, complete a final walk through with your apartment complex manager or another representative from your apartment complex. Be available. If you’ve hired movers, you’ll need to be there during inventory, to sign the Bill of Lading, and to confirm your new address and delivery date. Exchange contact information with your van operator.  Take a last glance at every room and storage area. Make sure: Windows and doors are locked. Keys are returned. Lights are out.

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