Written by Sean Cooper
Wednesday, March 20th, 2019
Congratulations, you're a homeowner! After you pop the champagne bottle to celebrate, you'll want to start planning your move.
Moving can be a stressful time, but by planning ahead, you can help ensure your move goes smoothly. There are a lot of moving pieces (pun intended) when it comes to moving.
Here are nine things to consider before moving in.
1. Home Insurance
Your home is likely your most valuable financial asset, so it only makes sense to get home insurance. Home insurance protects your property if anything were to happen to it. It's a good idea to start shopping around early. Most lenders require that you have a home insurance policy in place by your closing date in order for your mortgage to be approved.
2. Utilities (Hydro, Gas, etc.) and Phone/Internet/Cable
If you're a first-time homebuyer, you'll need to set up new accounts with utility companies and phone (landline only)/internet/cable providers. Keep in mind some companies charge account setup fees. If you're an existing homeowner, let these companies know you're moving, so you can have your account transferred over to your new property.
3. Arrange for Movers or Rent a Truck
Depending on how much stuff you have and whether you feel comfortable driving a moving truck, you'll need to decide whether you want to hire movers or move on your own. You might consider having your moving day after your closing day, because if the closing doesn't happen until later in the day, like at 4 p.m., you could be stuck moving until midnight. Not fun!
4. Update Your Address on Your Driver's Licence, with Your Bank, Family Doctor, Schools, etc.
You'll want to ensure your address is current everywhere. It may take some time for your address to be updated, so it's a good idea to be proactive and contact the necessary people/companies early. Not too early, since you don't want to miss an important piece of mail that's sent to your new place before you actually move in.
5. Set Up Mail Forwarding to Your New Address with Canada Post
There's a lot going on when you're moving. It's easy to overlook updating your address somewhere. Or sometimes you do update your address, but for whatever reason a piece of mail is sent to your old address. By setting up mail forwarding, you're less likely to miss an important piece of mail.
6. Get Rid of Stuff You Don't Need Ahead of Time
As soon as you know you're moving, it's a good idea to start purging. Look at everything you own and ask yourself if you really want to bring it with you to your new place. Purging can involve everything from clothing to furniture. If the weather's nice, you can have a yard sale to get rid of everything and/or you can donate to others in need.
7. Start Packing Early. Order Packing Supplies. Label Boxes by Room and as Fragile.
Don't leave packing until the last minute. Start packing early. Order proper packing supplies — whatever isn't provided by your mover. The last thing you want to do is drop your mother's irreplaceable fine China because it's packed in a flimsy box. Labeling boxes helps, too. It makes unpacking a lot easier.
8. Take Measurements of Your New Home
You don't want to arrive on moving day, only to realize your couch won't fit through the door frame or your bed is the size of your bedroom. Take measurements during a walkthrough.
9. Have Adequate Insurance in Case Anything is Damaged/Lost While Moving
If you're moving on your own using a moving truck, make sure you have adequate insurance coverage in case you get into an accident in the moving truck and/or your stuff is damaged. Likewise, if you're hiring movers, speak with the moving company to find out about its insurance in the event something gets damaged.