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Your ultimate moving home checklist

By ,| 5 min read

The moving process can often seem like the most stressful part of purchasing a home. It's easy to forget things in the hustle and bustle of your upcoming move.

We've created a handy moving house checklist so that your move can be as stress free as possible.

Step 1: Update your address

The first thing you may think of when moving is to grab the cardboard boxes and start packing. But, before you get out the bubble wrap, a number of government and non-government organisations need to be notified of your change of address.

This is an important step in the moving process. These organisations should be your first port of call:

  • Australian Electoral Commission: Change your AEC address details here.
  • State and Territory Road Traffic Authority: Update your registration, license and E-Toll information for NSW, Victoria and South Australia.
  • Human Services: Don’t miss out on vital correspondence from your human services providers. Find out how to update your address details for Centrelink here and Medicare here.
  • Australia Post: Notify Australia Post and have your mail redirected to your new address. You can do so here.
  • Schools: Notify your children’s school of your change of address. Similarly, any TAFE or university that you or a family member attends needs to be notified.
  • Financial institutions: Notify your bank and any lenders you may have of your new address.
  • Insurance companies: Don't forget to update your health insurance and car insurance provider of your change of address.
  • Home and contents insurance: Ensure your current plan covers you during your move. Many do not cover any damage or loss to possessions during the transit period if it is not done by a professional. In this case, you may want to consider investing in moving insurance.
  • Your pet’s registry and microchip: You can update microchip details here. Different states and territories have their own policies, so check your local council to ensure you are complying with their regulations.

Don't forget to inform:

  • Your employer
  • Superannuation funds
  • Pay TV
  • Any concession cards
  • Magazine and newspaper subscriptions
  • And of course, your family and friends

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Step 2: Switching utilities and internet

Electricity and gas

Connection and disconnection are two things you need to think about when transferring your electricity and gas account to a new home.

For disconnection, notify your current energy provider of your move at least one week before your move date. Notify them of your moving dates and organise disconnection for the day after you move. Also provide your electricity and gas provider with your new address so that they can send you the bill for the electricity that you have used.

If you’re renting with roommates and the account with your provider is under your name, ensure you change this. Put the account in a tenant’s name that continues to live there. This is necessary as you don’t want to be held liable for any issues that arise after you have moved out.

If you plan to stay with your current provider, notify them of your new address and organise a connection date. However, this may be the perfect opportunity for you to evaluate your current energy bill and look for cheaper options.

If the electricity has already been disconnected at your new home, ensure all fuse box switches are turned off for a smooth connection.

Changing providers within NSW, ACT and Victoria is a pretty straightforward process. However, there are tighter regulations with energy providers in QLD, SA, WA and NT, so you may need to pay extra attention.

Water

Unlike electricity, there is no disconnection and connection with your water supply. This means you have running water from day one - you just need to make sure the right person is paying for it.

To ensure your water debts are resolved before and after you move, you must contact a conveyancer or solicitor to assist in the process. Water debts are held against the property, not the owner, so outstanding balances must be resolved before new occupants arrive.

A conveyancer or solicitor will contact the current water provider and disclose the amount due. They settle this amount between the seller and buyer of the property.

Internet

If you have a fixed line, broadband or any pay TV connected through your internet provider, you can request an appointment online or over the phone. For mobile phone, mobile broadband or wireless services you need to ensure you update your billing information before moving.

For those who rely on home wireless broadband, make sure your new suburb has 4G coverage, as there can be limited service in rural or remote areas. If you are switching between a cable service to the NBN service, a new modem is required.

Some providers may charge a relocation fee of up to $140 depending on your provider. If you need to end your contract, an early termination fee may be charged, and can cost up to $830 depending on your provider.

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Step 3: Getting organised for moving day

  • Load up on bubble wrap, tape and boxes: Ensure all your belongings survive the journey with a cushion of bubble wrap to protect their fall, that all loose and fragile items are secured, and your moving boxes are sturdy.
  • Label: When packing up your prized possessions, make sure you label the box. To avoid the unpacking frustration, include the room it belongs in as well as the box’s contents.
  • Dismantle: As much as you wish you didn’t have to, dismantling your furniture is a necessary part of moving. When you do so, keep any screws and instructions in a labelled zip-lock bag and tape to a piece of the furniture it belongs to. If you choose not to dismantle, check the measurements of any entryways the furniture has to fit through in your new house.
  • Organise a council pick up: Packing can be a good opportunity to give your home a good clean out. If you have hoarding tendencies, this is the time to give those unwanted items you’ve held onto for the last ten years the chuck. Call your local council or hold a garage sale.
  • Book removalists: Hiring a moving truck can reduce the number of trips between the old and new house. They take the stress out of heavy lifting and the real-life game of Tetris that occurs when loading boxes.
  • Load strategically: Load your van or car with the heavy items on the bottom, and lighter items on the top. Keep in mind the items you will want to use straight away, and make sure they’re easily accessible.
  • Pack an essentials box: Your picture frames and desk chair can wait, what can’t is the necessary cup of coffee the morning after you move. Pack a box of your everyday essentials including toiletries, spare clothes and underwear, coffee, tea, first aid, cooking essentials and snacks.
  • Clean: Make the move a pleasant one for the new occupants by leaving your home clean and presentable. If you are leaving a rented space, ensure your clean is thorough. Many people hire cleaning services to perform an end-of-lease clean to make sure they uphold any cleaning requirements in their lease.
  • Sketch a layout of how you want your furniture to be arranged: If you’ve got movers, this can help them unpack according to your preferences. It also helps yourself to know where to unload your boxes in the home so that they don’t clog up the entryway.
  • Have a toolkit on hand: When moving into your new home, it’s ideal to set up your bedding and commonly used furniture first. Having your tools on hand means this can be done straight away, without having to rummage through boxes.
  • Make your home yours: Add personal touches to make this unfamiliar place more comfortable. Hang a familiar painting or lay out a rug so that the emptiness of this new home doesn’t feel overwhelming.

For even more moving tips, the Australian Government has provided a thorough checklist of who to notify.

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Tags: family home, home, new purchase, new home, pets, relocate

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