The key to a stress-free house moving experience is planning. The old saying is so true: failing to prepare is preparing to fail! While the obvious things are easy to prepare for, it’s sometimes the little things that can really catch us out. Packaging your flat-screen TV securely and ensuring that everything in your moving boxes is neatly protected may be common sense, but have you considered switching your digital TV and broadband services over to your new house?
Notify the council
We’ve all seen those TV adverts featuring neighbours peeking through their net curtains and snitching on their unfamiliar neighbours for fraud. While this is unlikely to happen in your new place, you must tell your local council of your change of address and the exact date that you have moved into the property, so that you are paying the correct council tax charges from the right date.
You do have up to one month to notify the council from when you move in, but do aim to complete this as early as possible to avoid any delays to your billing process. They will not hesitate to demand full payment up front if you fall slightly behind on your monthly contributions.
Redirect your post
Companies need to contact you via post, so be sure to use a redirection service like those offered by the Royal Mail etc. You can choose to have the service running for three, six or 12 months, plus you can extend this if you still have mountains of post being sent to your old address. The service costs from £29.99 per surname and you can find more information about it on Royal Mail’s website here.
Update your TV licence
Your TV licence doesn’t automatically follow you when you change address, so you will need to update your details to avoid being caught out. You can easily do this up to three months before you move by filling in an online form. Nobody wants to be landed with an on-the-spot fine because it’s simply slipped their mind, so the sooner you do it the better. You can find the form and more information about TV licences here.
Ring your current utilities providers
It’s important to give final meter readings for your old property so that you won’t be overcharged for your final energy bill. You can either take these yourself, or alternatively, you can arrange a time for someone to come and take these for you through your landlord or estate agent.
Give your current energy and water suppliers a ring at least 48 hours before you move into the new property and inform them of the date you are moving and the new address so that they can post the final bill to you. You will also need to provide meter readings for the new property that you are moving into, so be sure to take these as soon as you move in or you may be overcharged from the onset of your contract.
Organise your transport
Do you need to hire a van to move all of your belongings or could you manage them all in a few car trips? If you want to do the whole journey in one go, then hiring a private van for a few hours will be a lot cheaper than a removals company, but it does mean you would have to do the manual work yourself.
Transfer your broadband
You need to decide whether you want to stick with the same Internet provider or switch to a new one. If you are still only a small way into a 12 or 18-month contract it makes sense to stay with the same company, however if you are coming to the end of a contract it couldn’t hurt to shop around for a better deal.
You may find that your current provider doesn’t even offer services in your new area, due to them only operating in certain network areas or where the technology is available, so you may have no option but to buy your way out of your current contract and switch providers.
If you are going to stay with your Internet provider then you simply need to call them prior to the moving day and they will be able to arrange the switch for when you move in. Once you are in your property you will usually need to phone the Internet provider and give them a long unique number called a MAC code, which will let them have information about the speed of the line, the exchange and the line type. You will be charged for the cost of installing the new phone line, which can be up to £130 depending on the provider.
Move your digital TV package across
One of the first things you want to do when you’ve unpacked the cardboard boxes and settled into your new home is to put your feet up in front of the TV and relax. But if you’ve forgotten to transfer your digital TV package over to the new address, you might not be able to do this for quite a long time.
Every provider is different, but the majority require you to inform them of the move at least two weeks before it happens. They will then be able to book an appointment to come round and re-install it. Large organisations such as Sky and Virgin Media offer their own advice on how to make this as easy as possible, so be sure to check these out.
Protect your contents
Accidents may happen during the move, fragile items can become damaged and things get lost. Make sure your possessions are fully covered during the transition and check your current home insurance policy.
Contact your current provider as soon as you know you are moving and inform them of your plans. That way they can tell you whether any of your possessions will be covered, or whether there are any restrictions. Prevent accidents as much as possible by using strong, durable moving boxes as opposed to black bin bags or flimsy boxes you pick up at the supermarket. As you can see from our product range, here at Boxes2Move we have an extensive variety of high-quality moving and storage boxes that will keep your possessions secure.
Once your items have arrived in your new home you should ring your insurance provider and let them know whether any damages occurred in order to re-evaluate your cover. It’s also crucial that you transfer your current contents insurance to your new address. This can be done by informing your provider of your change of address prior to moving. They will then take certain elements into account to calculate your new premium, such as postcode, the type of property you are moving into and the value of your belongings.
Inform your bank
You must change your address with your bank as soon as you move into your new home, to avoid any statements, new cards or bills getting sent to the old address. This wouldn’t just be an inconvenience, it could potentially help someone to commit identity fraud if they got hold of your banking information. This switch isn’t the hassle it used to be. You can alter your address within a few minutes by either going into the branch and informing them of your new address, or logging into online banking and manually changing it yourself.
Look after your loved ones
You need to ensure the wellbeing of your children during the moving process, especially if they are very young or babies, as they may become upset and confused. Moving furniture will create huge amounts of dust and dirt so it’s best to not expose your children to these things if you can help it. Ask a friend or relative to watch them for a few hours while you get the house organised and you can bring them back once everything is clean and settled.
It is also a good idea to put your dog or cat in a kennel during the moving process, as they will also become unsettled once they see furniture being taken away. Once you’ve moved in, keep them inside for a few weeks until they get used to their environment before letting them outside on their own or they may be at risk of getting lost or trying to find their way back to your old property.
More information can be found on-line at: www.boxes2move.com