You tell yourself you won't forget these important things, but in the excitement of moving it's easy to drop the ball on something. After all, there are boxes to pack and floor plans to doodle and an apartment warming party to plan. Right? But first, do make sure you tackle these crucial moving tasks. Set aside a few hours in your schedule, have your laptop and cell phone handy, have cup of coffee at the ready, and download/print the free checklist at the bottom of this post.
1. Change Your Address
First, change it with the United States Postal Service. It's super easy to do online and is almost free – they charge like a $1 for verification purposes. The best part? You have the option to sign up for handy-dandy moving coupons. Some are emailed to you, others are sent by snail mail. From hardware stores to cable providers, you'll be pleasantly surprised with some of the deals you can score just by updating your address.
After updating it with the USPS, update it everywhere else that you can think of. The USPS basically forwards your mail for about a year. They don't notify others of your new address for you. It's up to you to change your address with government agencies (social security, IRS, DMV), your bank or financial institution credit card companies, insurance providers, medical providers, your employer, subscriptions (magazines, Birch Box, etc.), and any online accounts that may mail you things.
2. Get Hooked Up with Utilities
Not only will you need to schedule a start-up for your utilities in the new place, but you'll also need to stop your current utilities. You don't want to pay gas, electricity, or water in two places at once! Double and triple check with your landlord to find out A) What utilities are covered by the property management, B) What utilities need to be in your name, and C) What companies those utilities are through. Usually, you can do this online. When it comes to utilities, however, I prefer to talk to someone over the phone.
3. Sign Up for Your Entertainment
Just as with your utilities, you'll want to switch over or sign up for your internet, cable, or landline. Shop around before signing up. Also, find out if your new place is already wired for a certain cable or internet provider. (It could save you on installation fees!) Compare prices, consider bundling, and go with the package that's right for you. You don't have to get talked into a fancy package that you might not end up using, so keep in mind that you could upgrade in the future.
4. Insure Your New Place
Your new residence needs to be protected from things like fire and theft, so renters' insurance is a must whether you live in a brand new complex, old house, secure building, or downtown in the city. First, check with your auto insurance provider to see what you can save by bundling. But before you commit, shop around a little. You'll probably save more by bundling, but it never hurts to check. It's easy and fast to get quotes and buy your insurance online. As you choose your coverage amount, really think about what your own. A lot of renters undervalue their possessions. So walk around your apartment and take note of how much everything costs: furniture, computers and electronics, clothing, etc.
5. Register to Vote / Update Your License
If you change your address with the USPS online, you'll probably be prompted to update your voter registration at the same time. Otherwise, it can often be done when you update your drivers' license. This is probably one of the easiest things to forget to do, especially in college if you move around a lot. It's a necessary hassle, but being all registered and having an up-to-date drivers' license can save you many headaches down the road.
Print your own checklist!
Below, I've created a nifty freebie for your checklist pleasure.
Click on the link below to download and print the list – it's absolutely free. :)