by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
For most people pondering a move, the portion that involves the actual moving is the most overwhelming. Obtaining a new home is exhilarating—beginning a new chapter in life, whether you are moving into your dream house in Wichita Falls or getting something smaller, there is something about a move that helps you feel like you are starting anew. Then, you see all your musty old possessions and that hot air balloon you're riding over the moon to your new digs comes back to earth and you land in a pile of old books and kid's artwork that you have to deal with. However, if you plan your move and follow an easy checklist, you can manage to pack your life and move it to Wichita Falls without a lot of stress and misery.
It is average to have a moving timespan of roughly three months, so this timeline figures you have that much time to work on your move. All that’s required to get started is a large file folder.
Three Months Out
Select your moving company—think about if you desire full-service moving or you prefer to do it yourself or something in between, sort of an a la carte option. A moving specialist comes by your residence and walks through to approximate how many moving vans and how many boxes you will require, assess time to load, transport, and unload, and provide you a quote for other work, like packing, taking apart speciality items, and storing, if necessary. After you decide on your moving company and service level, make sure to verify you are in their books. Keep a copy of the quote in your folder. One big thing down!
It is never too early to begin purging—which items to give to a charity, throw away, or pack. How you go about the project is your choice, what is good for some doesn't work for all. Ignore all the blog posts and internet videos and move forward with what works for you—one afternoon you might tidy up and start to box up what is moving, the next day you may decide to keep purging and leave things in place. There truly is no correct way to accomplish it, so don't sweat it if you don't abide by the "rules".
Two Months Out
This is usually when it gets real—the calendar is somehow moving quicker than it should be, and the reality is that except for choosing your moving company and throwing out stuff from your junk drawer and mismatched socks, you have not completed anything.
If you are going to be quitting your job and haven't talked over your move with your boss, now is a good time--it provides them the time to train someone for your position so they are prepared when you leave.
If you have choosen to do your own packing, reevaluate. Help is a phone call away; your moving company can send over professional packers to do the job—they'll schedule dates closer to your move since they get there and get the packing accomplished in short order, and you will need your bed sheets and the coffee pot until the end.
Alert your service providers that you'll be leaving—if your move is not a long distance, give your yard service the new address and you are finished. Otherwise, here are several of the crucial ones.
Medical—doctors, orthodontists, dentists
Nowadays, most medical practitioners are part of bigger networks and your records are readily available if you switch doctors. Ask your doctor for recommendations. They network well and could have old friends from medical school they can recommend. While dentists and orthodontists do not have those networks, they will help guide you old-school, also.
As pharmacies merge you may be able to maintain your current provider, but to be prepared put hard copies of all your prescriptions in your file folder so that you will have them on hand in case of a glitch along the path. The last thing you need is to run out of thyroid medication the day you are loading the truck and have to finagle with a new pharmacy.
If you have children in school, enrolling them in a new school district is unavoidable—you need every document in existence to register them—birth certificate, social security info, proof of address (a copy of your contract if you have not closed in Wichita Falls yet), and immunization records at the very least. Ask specifically what you'll need, and be proactive and put all the documents in one place—the file folder.
If you have adult children in college and you are moving to a different state, inquire about the parameters for keeping in-state tuition. Each state has different rules, and the reasons for the move and the distance can be a deciding factor—some states allow in-state tuition if you're moving under a certain number of miles.
Keep purging and boxing—set a goal for a room every week, or all the closets in a week.
One Month Out
By now you should have gotten rid of, arranged, and have all your non-essentials in nicely packed and labeled boxes in an out-of-the-way place. Right. This is when you get fierce with purging--especially if you've opted to have the moving company pack whatever is left. It's astonishing how really unnecessary that old lamp becomes when you do not love it anyway and now it is going to cost you to move it. So, throw it out and keep moving.
Activities--Community, Religious, Social
If, by accident, you've neglected to bring up to anyone that you're moving, don’t delay any longer. Especially any volunteer activities you're active in, and if you are overseeing committees or on any boards, you hopefully have previously notified the groups so they can fill the gap you are leaving. Don't forget to pass off the files or records you have (Girl Scout cookie moms) to the person stepping into your old role. If you are part of a nationwide organization, (Rotary, Junior League) prepare your transfer documents--you can usually fill them out online.
Most mainline churches and synagogues provide the chance to transfer memberships; after you are settled and have found a new religious home, they will manage that for you when you are ready to join a new congregation.
If you are a member of any organization, you'll need to update your membership--depending on the organization’s rules, you might be able to have a non-resident status after you move to Wichita Falls.
Activities--Youth Sports, Clubs
If you have children, you shall have the excitement of finding new play groups, music teachers, basketball teams, and gymnastics studios. The great news is that club level teams are all over the place, if you have athletes. And, social media mom's groups are a decent way to seek other kid's groups. Keep in mind that everybody has an opinion, but you'll at the very least be able to get a good basket of contacts for karate and art lessons.
Two Weeks and Counting
Contact all your utilities and set up the stop-service request. Remember your internet and cable--you may be able to just switch some services if your provider is in your new hometown as well (gas, electric, TV, internet) but unless you are local you will most likely need new accounts. Set up your new accounts as you cancel the old ones, and do not forget the mail. You can set up your new home address and delivery stop dates online, and if you require a Post Office box you can set up that online too.
If you are moving long distance, confirm hotel reservations or airline tickets. If you are moving with your furry friends, be sure the hotels allow animals.
One Week to Go!
Make believe you're going on vacation and pack a bag or two, so you can get everything else packed to move. Have a “Clean Out the Fridge” week, and use paper products whenever possible so that you can pack up the rest of the kitchen.
If you are moving any landscaping, hold off until the last day to dig the plants up, and put them in large tubs for the move.
Confirm with the movers when they will be at your residence to begin loading.
You are ready to move. You've got your stuff ready to go on the moving truck, so get your folder, unplug the coffee pot and have a great move.