Moving to Another State Checklist
Moving out of state is a highly time-consuming process. From packing your possessions and arranging transport to forwarding your mail and finding a new job, you need to plan everything to the letter to ensure a smooth transition.
In this guide, we provide you with a comprehensive moving to another state checklist to help reduce the stress of moving.
1. Budget Carefully
According to estimates by the American Moving and Storage Association, moving from one state to another using hired professionals costs an average of $4,300. Even if you decide to move on your own, you will need to buy moving supplies and rent a rental truck or container.
This is why the first item on your to-do list should be to determine what you are willing to spend on the move. You should also account for unexpected costs and emergencies.
2. Visit the New State
With a budget in place, you should take your research a step further and actually visit your new state. Plan a brief trip and explore the environment, amenities, recreational activities, and neighborhoods. Carry some brochures and a guidebook with you or ask the concierge in your hotel for help.
3. Research the Job Market
While you don’t have to find a new job before moving, it is a good idea to learn about the career opportunities in your new city. If you get a job, your current employer might even provide you with relocation benefits. Remember to research salary ranges and consider the cost of living.
4. Review Available Schools
Right at the beginning is also a great time to check out some schools if you have school-age children.
You can do this during your visit or use a School Ratings tool to identify the best schools in your neighborhood that meet your children’s needs.
5. Determine Where to Live
Your best bet of finding a budget-conscious, convenient, and safe place to live is to hire a reputable real estate agent or Realtor.
Because they understand the current market conditions and know the neighborhoods well, they can guide you through the process of finding a new home.
You also don’t have to sign a long-term lease right away. You can negotiate a monthly agreement until you settle in.
6. Hire a Moving Company
As mentioned earlier, using professionals to move is not a cheap affair so, if you hire a moving company, you want one that is trustworthy and reliable.
Research several companies in your areas and review their ratings and customer feedback. Generally, you want to hire a moving company with:
· Updated registration.’
· An identification number from the US Department of Transportation
· Auto insurance and a workers’ compensation policy
Talk to at least three companies to get a quote. If a mover gives you a quote without inspecting your belongings in person or through video, you should consider this a red sign.
7. Settle on a Moving Date
Once you reach an agreement with the moving company, agree on a moving date.
Take into account your work schedule, the weather, your kids’ school timetable, and the company’s availability. If you decide to move on non-peak periods like weekdays, you could even get a lower rate.
8. Cancel Your Memberships
Number 8 on our moving to another state checklist is a money saver. If you don’t cancel your gym or country club memberships, you could end up paying for services you don’t use anymore.
It is crucial to complete this step early because some programs require at least a month’s notice to cancel an account. If the city you are moving to has the same club locations, you can transfer your memberships instead.
9. Transfer Your Utilities and Forward Your Mail
Utilities include things like internet, cable gas, water and sewer, satellite, security, and electricity.
Before you move, you should contact your utility providers and have them transfer your utilities to your new address. You can do the same for your mail by logging in to USPS.com and entering a forwarding date.
10. Transfer School Records
If you have children in school, you will need to inform their current schools that you will be moving.
This way, they can send over your kids’ school records to the new schools, and you can gather important documents like medical records and recommendation letters.
11. Buy Moving Supplies
Now that you have canceled all your commitments and informed important people of your move, you should start preparing for the move itself.
A great step at this point would be to purchase moving supplies like boxes, packing crates, tape, and bubble rolls. Try to order these items at least a month before you need to move so you can get a head start on the packing.
12. Start Packing
Once you receive your packing supplies, come up with a packing system that allows you to put away non-essential items first.
These are things you will not need in the time leading up to the move, such as vases, decorations, and books. The last items you should pack include cookware, toiletries, and clothes.
As you pack, gather all your important documents and seal them in a well-labeled, waterproof box.
13. Book a Car Shipping Service
If you own a vehicle, driving it to your new state might not be the best idea. Instead, consider a shipping service that transports the car for you.
You can also hire a professional to drive the car to your new location because, unlike you, they can protect your car from stress.
14. Establish Legal Domicile
If your move is permanent, you will need to establish your new state as your main area of residence.
You do this by establishing a legal domicile – a process whose exact steps you can read about on your state’s website. This step is crucial for tax purposes.
15. Register Your Pet
Do you own a pet? Well, every state has its own laws regarding pet ownership, so refer to the state website for information on pet registration.
It is also important that you travel with your pet’s registration or vaccination details because, in some states, police officers might request this info.
16. Get Your Driver’s License
You are almost done. Now, you need to register your vehicle and get a new driver’s license in your new state. Most states have a window for this, so you need to act fast, or you will miss it. For this step, you will need to visit a local DMV office with proof of residency, proof of identity, and proof of insurance,
17. Make New Friends
Lastly, signup for some classes, talk to your neighbors or volunteer in the community. The goal is to let people know that you are new to the neighborhood and are looking to make new friends.
Relocating to a new home is stressful and challenging, let alone moving to a whole new state.
But while you might face some minor challenges, our moving to another state checklist should help you enter this new chapter of your life with ease. Happy moving!