Moving house is often considered an overwhelming chore. But with careful planning and preparation the task can become surprisingly straightforward and stress free.
- Make a list of everything that will be going to your new home.
- Arrange removalists and include insurance in the quote.
- Secure electrical equipment by making a note of serial numbers.
- Photograph your valuables.
Having everything you need in advance will save you a lot of time on the day. Things you will most likely use are:
- Strong tape, scissors and thick marker pens
- Stick-on labels
- Strong packaging boxes in various sizes
- Wardrobe boxes with hanger bars (your removalist should have these)
- Butcher paper
- Newspaper (only use for cushioning and filling gaps, not wrapping as it can leave smudges)
- Inventory sheets
- Bubble wrap
- Ziplock bags
- Garbage bags
- Foam pieces (for sharp objects)
- Ropes and bungee cords
- Twist ties and elastic bands
- Sturdy boxes are the best. Use tape to fasten the bottom. Fold the boxes in a criss-cross way for the strongest and most secure base.
- Pad the bottom of the boxes with newspaper, bath towels or linen.
- In large boxes place a mixture of heavy and light items, placing heavy items at the bottom.
- The final weight of a packing box should not exceed 23kg.
- Label the contents of each box and which room they should go to and list them on a sheet.
- Write ‘top’ on the lid of each box.
Glassware and China
Breakables need plenty of protection – about a third of the box should be cushioning. Wrap all pieces separately in paper, and pack plates on their side. Fill any gaps with scrunched up paper to prevent movement.
Take extra care packing sharp objects such as knives, scissors, blades, etc. Place them in plastic containers or tins, and cover the sharp edges with foam or cardboard.
Use old linen to line the bottom of packing boxes. Other bedding and linen can be placed in heavy-duty garbage bags and used to fill gaps in the removal truck.
Removalists can supply wardrobe boxes with hanger bars. This is the best way to transport clothes and protect them at the same time. Otherwise wrap them in large lightweight blankets or sheets.
Don’t pack large cartons full of books – use the small purpose-made boxes. If you have to use large cartoons for books, use no more than half the carton and put the books at the bottom.
Sound systems, TVs, DVD players and Computers
- Remove all discs from machines. Read any operation manuals that give advice regarding transporting such equipment.
- Back up all files on computers.
Fridges and washing machines
- Fridge must be empty and completely dry. Remove all trays from fridge and tape down any moveable parts.
- Drain washing machines of any water and disconnect hoses. Check manufacturer’s instructions for special transportation requirements. Filling the washing machine with soft toys and light linen will prevent excessive movement.
- Make sure all lids are taped shut.
BBQ/gas bottles, Lawn Mowers and WhipperSnippers
- These items should not be transported while they still contain fuel or gas. They must be emptied and cleaned before removal.
- Gas bottles can remain connected, but any excess gas must be burnt off.
- Beds should be dismantled and legs and slats taped together. Place screws and bolts in a separate container and label them appropriately.
- Collapse bookcase shelving where possible.
- Fill your drawers with clothes or wrapped items and cover the entire drawer with old linen. Tape all the drawers shut.
- Cover your tables with old blankets, and if possible, remove the legs.
Plants and garden equipment
- Prune potted plants a couple of weeks before the move. The day before, put plants in a cardboard box packed with damp newspaper to secure them, and cover them with more damp newspaper. On moving day, close the boxes and punch air holes in the top.
- Drain water from garden hoses well in advance.
- Wash out rubbish bins and wheelbarrows.
- Empty and hose out compost bins.
Treasured and Valuable Goods
Treat the packing of these items separate from everything else and ensure the boxes are well labelled. If they are especially treasured and valuable items, it’s advisable to take them with you in your own vehicle.
- Things such as gym equipment, swing-sets and trampolines should be dismantled, with nuts and bolts put in separate containers and labeled.
- Protect paintings and large wall mirrors with cardboard.
- Carpets and rugs can be rolled up and secured with rope or tape.
Removalists won’t carry items such as:
- Lighters, aerosol cans or pressure packs, chlorine or chemicals, fuel and oils, fertilizers, paint, corrosives and flammable liquids.
- By carrying such items, removalists may invalidate their insurance.
Early Action Plan.
- Decide on a moving day.
- Create a detailed list of items for removal.
- Decide whether you’ll move yourself or hire removalists.
- Get cost estimates for DIY moving truck or removalists and book - we recommend Murray Carr 03 9878 2326 and book.
- If renting, inform your property manager of your intention to move.
- Arrange storage if required (we recommend Storage King – Mitcham with one month FREE storage for our clients contact us at Allens Real Estate 9889 8800).
- Change of address. List the people and organisations you need to advise that you’re moving.
Four weeks to go
- Now is the time to start packing, beginning with items that aren’t used much.
- Prepare inventory lists and start collecting packing boxes, tape, marking pens, packing paper and any other items required for packing.
- Have a thorough clean out and make arrangements for items you don’t intend to keep. Hold a garage sale or donate any unwanted goods to a charity such as Eastern Relief (03) 9874 8433.
- Arrange removal insurance
- Start advising people and organisations of your change of address. Australia Post offers a Mail Direction and Address Notification Service. Simply visit www.auspost.com.au/mailingservice or call 13 13 18
Two weeks to go
- Confirm your moving date with the removalist or truck hire company.
- The packing continues!
- Contact the utilities you will need connected at your new home. We recommend the services of Direct Connect, call 1300 664 715, they will connect your telephone, electricity and gas on your behalf at no extra cost.
- Start making arrangements to move pets (cages, kennel bookings, etc.) and plants.
- Change your driver’s licence and attend to all insurance policies.
- Ensure all people and relevant organisations have been notified of your change of address.
- Book carpet cleaner and any other cleaning/ garden/ maintenance services required.
- Arrange a final inspection with your agent at your new home.
- Collect the keys for your new house.
- Start the final cleaning of cupboards, floors, walls, carpets, etc.
- Cancel regular services such as newspaper delivery, magazine subscriptions, meals on wheels, lawn mowing, cleaners, etc.
- Confirm date of utilities services commencement.
- Ensure all arrangements have been made for settlement, and set aside, alarm details, remote controls and manuals for purchasers of your home. Obtain all spare keys from family and friends.
- Finish packing.
On the day!
- First thing, confirm that the removalists are on their way!
- Make sure someone you know is with the removalists when they are both packing and unpacking.
- Ensure each item on your inventory list goes into the truck.
- Keep a container aside to throw in any last minute items you come across.
- Carry any valuable personal items and cash with you.
- Switch of the electricity at the power board and turn off the gas at the meter. Ensure all taps are turned off.
- Do a final tour of your home, nothing left behind?
- Lock all doors and windows.
- Electricity and gas turned off? Telephone disconnected?
- Keys with solicitor or agent? (If appropriate)
After the move
- Have spare keys cut
- Enjoy your new home!
- Keep in touch with your Allens agents. We’d love to hear how you are going! We wish you all the best in your new home!