Moving Checklist

Moving Checklist Week-by-Week

From the time you decide to move to unpacking your final box, moving is a lot of work. Typically, the moving process takes between 2 and 3 full months to complete. Fast Moving Group will help you do this! Fast Moving Group has created a checklist to help you manage your move, and stress less throughout the process. In this helpful checklist, we walk you through each milestone in the moving process – from getting organized to celebrating.

Know You’re Moving Soon? These Are The First Things To Do.

Timeline: 2-3 months before your move

Once you have decided to move, the planning process can begin. Whether it’s around the block or across the country, there’s a lot that goes into making this big change.

Get Organized

Have a dedicated area to save everything associated with your move. Using the binder or planner method may work best. If you are more tech-savy you can download and use an organization app on your phone. Here, you can plan to keep your contracts, receipts, reminders and contact information for your moving contacts. If you plan to use the services of Fast Moving Group please call or email us at 1-855-355-9555 or, to help streamline your move.

Know Your Moving Budget

Moving can be expensive, but it’s important to set limits and know where to cut costs.  

  • Determine how much you want to/can spend. We will guide
  • Consider Fast Moving Group that will assist you with the entire moving experience.

Hiring Fast Moving Group can be more cost-effective in the long run.

The price of a long-distance move depends on numerous factors. These can include distance, cubic feet, and your move-in date. Weekends and peak moving season (May through September) are historically more expensive. Add-on services such as packing and unpacking or car shipping will increase your bill, but will simplify your move.  

If you plan to do all the moving yourself, consider all of the expenses associated with a move. These include:  

  • Moving supplies 
  • Transportation (gas, tolls,etc)
  • Labor  
  • Storage and more.
  • Injury during heavy lifting/ Medical Bills
  • Item damage

Tasks To Complete 8 Weeks From Moving Day

At least two months before your move is a good time to start researching. The cheapest mover can often be too good to be true – or not a mover at all. Please let Fast Moving Group provide you with proper estimates.

Research Moving Companies & Services

  • Make sure who you select is a member of the ATA Moving & Storage Conference. Fast Moving Group is an allied member of the ATA Moving and Storage Conference.
  • Compare your providers through online reviews and the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
  • If moving from state to state (interstate moving), ensure the companies you are hiring has a Household Goods Motor Carrier authority from the FMCSA. This federally authorizes them to transport your belongings across state lines. 

When requesting for moving quotes, you should be prepared to answer the following basic questions about your move. 

  • Your move dates 
  • Origin/destination zip codes 
  • Home size
  • How many floors your home has 
  • Which additional moving services you need  
  • Inventory of special items

Additionally, consider the following when selecting a moving company or broker:  

  • If you’re paying for your interstate move, the moving company or broker is required by law to provide you with 2 informational packets; the “Ready to Move” along with your quote; and the “Your rights and Responsibilities When You Move” before you book your move. Review and understand these documents in full.  
  • If your employer is paying for your move, refer to their moving policies and procedures. 
  • Understand your move protection options and claims process. Interstate moving companies are required to offer Full Value Protection for moves that involve transporting goods across state lines.

7 Weeks From Moving Day – Get Your Family & Personal Details In Order

The 7-week mark provides enough time for you to make sure everything is organized with your employer, childcare providers, and pets. This is a great time to start planning your moving strategy.

Job-Related Moving Tasks

If you are moving for new employment, confirm your start date and time.  

If you are staying with your current employer: 

  • Request for time off during the move. 
  • Advise them of your upcoming change of address.

Notify Your Schools & Medical Providers

  • If you have children attending school, notify the current school about your move and register with a new school.  
  • Begin transferring school and medical records for everyone in the family (including pets). 

Make a Decision On Storage

Shopping for your new space is fun! Create a list of items you need for your new home. If you need larger pieces of furniture like sofas, begin shopping for them now. Sofas and other larger pieces can take up to 4 months for delivery. Be sure you have all the correct measurements, so everything fits nicely in your new home! 

Start A Shopping List

Shopping for your new space is arguably the most fun you can have moving. Create a list of items you need for your new home. If you need larger pieces of furniture, begin shopping for them now. Sofas and other custom pieces can take up to six weeks for delivery. Be sure you have all the correct measurements, so items fit nicely in your new space! 

Start Planning Travel 6 Weeks Before Your Move

You know how your belongings are getting to your new home, but do you know how you are getting there?

  • Book airfare if required. 
  • Book a hotel if you need lodging on the road 
  • Book childcare and/or pet sitting services. 
  • Secure transportation from the airport if needed. 
  • If you are moving long-distance, make appointments to have your vehicles serviced. This should be completed about 2-weeks prior to your move.  
  • If you need your vehicle(s) shipped, make arrangements to do so. Fast Moving Group auto shipping for you.

Five Weeks Out: It Begins To Feel Real

Start gathering boxes and packaging supplies. You need to protect your important documents and start to declutter belongings.

Back Up Important Digital Files

Important documents are not something you want to lose track of during a move.  

  • If you have physical documents, consider scanning them to the cloud. 
  • Update your computer and download any software updates. 
  • Confirm that all of your digital files and photos are backed up. 
  • Make sure to know and secure your logins and passwords for online accounts. 
  • Place documents like passports, birth certificates, social security cards and financial statements in a secure place. You should bring these items with you and not have your mover put them on the moving van. 
  • Collect all product warranty documentation and manuals in one place.

Packing Yourself? Start Gathering Moving Boxes & Supplies

You’ll be shocked to see how much of your life doesn’t fit in your suitcase. With just over a month before your move, start cataloging your belongings and collecting boxes for your move.  

  • Get familiar with the different types of moving boxes, such as dish packs and wardrobe boxes. Determine how many boxes you will need. 
  • Purchase boxes and moving supplies.

Declutter & Determine What Isn’t Coming With You

Over the years, you’ve amassed a lot and you may not wish to bring everything with you. Now is the perfect time to declutter.

  • Return any items you may have borrowed from neighbors, friends, family, etc. 
  • Go room by room and set up 4 piles: Keep, Sell, Donate and Trash. 
  • For the items you wish to sell, organize a garage sale or sell them online.
  • Any items that you wish to donate to a charity can be donated to an organization like Goodwill or The Salvation Army. Some donation-worthy items can include: clothes, costumes, kitchenware/appliances, books, linens, toys and games, decor, sporting goods and furniture. 
  • Contact a junk removal company to pick up any unwanted items. Usually this will come at a cost.
  • Dispose of hazardous items properly to comply with federal, state and local laws and to protect the environment. Contact your city or county for a list of these items and where to dispose of them.

4 Weeks Out: It’s Time To Start Packing

It’s imperative to give yourself plenty of time to pack. You’ll want to start roughly a month before your moving day. 

  • Begin gathering your packing supplies, like boxes, scissors, tape, markers, baggies, padding and hardware/tools. 
  • Start packing with garages and storage spaces since they usually hold seasonal items and/or items that aren’t used frequently. 
  • Designate an out of the way area in each room for packing ahead. 
  • Pack the items that you know you will not need immediately. These include seasonal items such as winter or summer clothes, holiday decorations, special dishware/fine-china, decor items, etc. 
  • Make sure you understand what items are hazardous and/or not allowed on the moving truck. Read our Non- Allowable List for more information (Fast Moving Group Non-Allowable List).
  • Keep a list of each box, what items are in the box and which room it belongs in. You may also want to take photos of your items for your inventory as well. 
  • Label each box — on the side of the box — with its contents and the room it should be placed in. Make sure to label if the contents inside are fragile or heavy. 
  • For small furniture hardware, use separate plastic baggies and label accordingly.

3 Weeks Before The Move: It’s Time To Start Saying Goodbye

The next 3 weeks will be very busy. Now is an appropriate time to get your affairs in order before the big move. 

  • Change your address with your local post office; have your mail forwarded. 
  • Set up any recurring services for your new home and cancel services to your existing home. These include house cleaning, lawn care, pool care, snow removal, pet care and more. 
  • Update your community memberships, subscription services, and gym or club memberships. 
  • Update your address with agencies such as the IRS, Veterans Affairs, Medicare and Medicaid offices. 
  • Update your address with local parties or organizations. These include your employer and payroll department, your local voter’s registration office and your financial institutions. 
  • Visit your favorite places with your favorite people before you depart.

2-Week Notice On Your Move

With two weeks to go, there’s still tons to get done before the big move. Now is a perfect time to clean and prep your home and finish up any other outstanding tasks before you go.

Clean And Prep Your Home

Get your home ready for life after you. At this time, begin to live with only essential items. Starting early will protect your security deposit if you rent, or, ensure a fresh start for your successors.

  • Clean your refrigerator and prep two weeks’ worth of meals. If possible, use everything in your freezer, because frozen food doesn’t travel well and can’t be included in shipments. 
  • Arrange for move-out cleaning services. If you choose to clean yourself, make sure to mop, dust and wipe down surfaces, blinds and baseboards. 
  • Clean and dust your furniture. Debris and small pieces of grime can chip or scratch hard surfaces during the move process. 
  • Have your area rugs cleaned so they arrive wrapped and ready to unroll at your new house. 
  • Dismantle furniture that is not being used at this point. If possible, use the owner’s manual to correctly dismantle your pieces. Make sure to keep all hardware for each piece together in sealed and labeled plastic bags.

Prepare For The Trip

For a long-distance move, double check your itinerary, and be prepared for the road ahead.


  • Confirm your air travel, transportation to and from the airport and any hotel plans. 
  • If you are driving to your new destination, have your vehicles serviced. 
  • Plan your route: lodging, attractions, food stops, rest areas and gas fill-ups. 
  • If you’re moving with children, pack activities such as coloring books, crayons, books and small toys. Don’t forget their favorite blanket and travel pillow! 
  • Prepare clothes, toiletries, snacks and other items you may need for traveling. 
  • Make a note of things you will want to have with you during your move: personal documents, electronics, jewelry, medication, etc. 
  • If you are shipping your car to your new destination, confirm details and how to preparewith the moving/shipping company. 
  • Keep an eye on the weather for your upcoming travels.

Wrap Up Miscellaneous Tasks

Before you move, make sure the little things you put off are taken care of. Remember to:  

  • Return library books. 
  • Take back any items that need to be returned to local stores. 
  • Cancel or redirect scheduled deliveries; make sure your address change is correct. 
  • Pick up clothing from the dry cleaner. 
  • Pay any outstanding fees or penalties, like unpaid parking tickets, legal fees, etc.

Things To Do The Week Before Your Move

This is it… your final countdown. During the final week, you’ll want to prepare your appliances for your move. You’ll also want to confirm your utilities are turned on and off and confirm any arrangements.

Prepare Your Appliances

If you are taking any appliances or large items with you, there are a few additional steps before moving them.

  • Unplug, empty out, defrost, wipe down and open the doors of your freezer, ice maker and refrigerator. This should be completed at least 24 hours before your movers are set to arrive. 
  • Empty your dishwasher and let it air out, so there is no moisture inside. 
  • Disconnect and disassemble/stabilize your washer and dryer. 
  • Make sure that there is no oil or gas inside any grills, lawn mowers and/or other gas-powered items. 
  • Remove/return any propane canisters. 
  • Disassemble garden hoses and lawn care equipment and allow sufficient time for them to dry out. 
  • Pack up any smaller appliances, like your microwave, air fryer, crock pots and pressure cookers. 
  • Remove light bulbs from lamps and lighting fixtures and pack those securely with lots of padding to avoid breakage. 
  • Disassemble televisions and mounting systems. 
  • Disassemble computers, printers, scanners and networks.

If you don’t feel comfortable completing any of these items yourself, we recommend you hire a qualified specialist to help.

Contact Utilities & Service Providers

You do not want to pay for services you are not using at your old home. You also want your new home to be well-lit and comfortable upon arrival.  

  • Plan for your new utility services to be turned on at least a day or two before you arrive. If moving in the middle of summer or winter, you will want to have HVACrunning on move-in day. 
  • Make sure you have contacted all your utility and home service providers for connect and disconnect of services. These include gas, electric, trash, water, recycling, cable and internet. 
  • Request disconnection of your current utilities the day after your move.

Plan Last-Minute Prep For Move-Our Day

At this point, most of the work is already done. In the days immediately leading up to your move, there are a few last-minute things you will want to confirm.

young couple taking a break from packing their living room, using a box as a table for their breakfast muffins - United Van Lines®

  • Confirm the logistics of your move with Fast Moving Group and/or anyone helping you on move-out day. 
  • Confirm arrangements for children and/or pets for move-out day. 
  • Make sure the keys to your new home are somewhere safe but easily accessible. 
  • Finish packing your first night kit. This includes all the necessities you will need for the first night at your new home. 
  • Meal prep for the week leading up to move-out day. 
  • If you would like to tip your movers at move-out and move-in, make sure to go to the ATM. Tipping is optional and at your discretion. 
  • Complete any last-minute packing. 
  • Keep an eye on the weather and adjust accordingly. 
  • Make sure any outdoor furniture is clean, dry and ready for the movers. 
  • The night before you move, prepare a cooler with water and snacks.

Managing Move-Out Day

The big day has finally arrived. On moving day, be sure to:

How to Understand Moving Costs - United Van Lines mover reviewing moving costs with a customer in her kitchen- United Van Lines

  • Place items that should travel separately from the moving truck in your vehicle or in a designated area of your home. Make sure to let the movers know that those items are not to be packed in the moving van. 
  • Meet and greet your movers. Provide them with any important information about your property and discuss any concerns you may have about the moving process. 
  • Make sure your floors are protected. 
  • Be prepared to direct movers to rooms and on how to handle specific items of note. 
  • Read and sign any necessary paperwork for your move. 
  • Take a final walk through. Make sure there’s nothing left behind, all lights are off and doors are locked.

Moving In To Your New Home

Once you have arrived at your new home with your movers:

  • Make sure your floors are protected. 
  • Direct the movers where furniture and boxes should be placed. 
  • Read and sign any necessary paperwork. 
  • Set up your shower curtains in bathrooms. 
  • Assemble and make beds. 
  • Before you begin unpacking, do some basic cleaning. 
  • Unpack the cooler and any food items you packed for the first night in your new home. 
  • Unpack personal items that you placed in your first night kit. 
  • Be sure to get any personal items out of your vehicle that traveled with you.

Unpacking & Unwinding

The past 8 weeks have been challenging. It’s time to start settling into your new home and congratulating yourself on a job well done.

  • Unpack a little at a time and take the opportunity to do a second round of decluttering as you go. 
  • Consider using an unpacking service to help reduce the stress that can come with the unpacking process. 
  • Unpack things you know you will need immediately, like dishware, toiletries, clothes, and food. 
  • Pick up any groceries and/or personal items from the store that you will need for your first week. 
  • Deep clean your new house. This includes your carpets, hard floors, windows, baseboards, ceiling fans, stairs, hard surfaces, and furniture. Cleaning allows you to start unpacking in a nice, clean environment. You may choose to use a move-in cleaning company to save time and for convenience. 
  • Assemble furniture, including dressers, cabinets, and shelving.