Onward to Better Opportunities: Your Moving Out of State Checklist

If you’re planning on moving out of state, you’re not alone. Many Americans are voting with their feet, with the majority moving to new homes in the West and South. Of course, even as you head off toward a fresh start, it’s worth noting that long-distance moving can be a major challenge. From finding long-distance moving services to coordinating shipments to your new home, this task can inspire significant headaches. If you’re not sure where to start, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a simple moving out of state checklist for each leg of your journey.



Two Months Before You Move

At this stage, your move is a long way off, and your preparations will be more general. However, the early start can make a huge difference!

  • Make a moving folder to collect all of your receipts, quotes, records, and more
  • Print your comprehensive moving checklist with all of your family’s needs
  • Explore the area around your new home
  • Get in-home estimates from your local moving companies and read over the contracts
  • Buy moving boxes and moving supplies
  • Set out a moving budget for the costs of moving out of state, including travel expenses, meals, and more

Of these early steps, the most important will be getting organized. Be sure to consider what you’re putting into your moving folder, whether you create a physical or digital one, and keep using it throughout the next steps!

Six Weeks Before You Move

Time is growing shorter at this point, so be sure to stay organized and start reaching out to update everyone on your move:

  • Find short-term rental housing or book a hotel or Airbnb
  • Schedule a car shipment to move your car across the country, if you aren’t driving it
  • Buy plane tickets if you’re flying
  • Start decluttering your home by donating, selling, or tossing old belongings
  • Inform your current utility companies about your shut-off dates
  • Start scheduling get-togethers with friends you won’t see once you’ve left the area

If you’d rather keep belongings instead of purging them, note that you can always opt to find a storage company for your things. Here’s more on how to choose.

Four Weeks Before You Move

At the one-month mark, it’s time to pare down your belongings as much as you can and plan for the actual move!

  • Make a plan to organize your packing
  • Get in touch with your new utility companies, bank, and phone provider
  • Schedule a home cleaner for your current home after you’ve moved out
  • Update your voter registration

Don’t delay in getting in touch with your new providers and utility companies: the last thing you want is to go without vital services because you forgot this step!

Two Weeks Before You Move

At two weeks out, things are getting busy:

  • Get your family’s personal documents, like passports and birth certificates, into a safe place to take with you
  • Start packing your things and confirm your moving date with your out of state movers
  • Update your driver’s license
  • Update your address with any subscriptions, newspapers, etc.
  • Set up your mail forwarding

Make sure to get as much as possible checked off your list to free up time for the unexpected issues and surprises that often crop up as you get closer to the big day.

One Week Before You Move

The week of your move, it’s all about packing and cleaning:

  • Clean your home, if you aren’t hiring professionals to do the job for you
  • Finish packing your things
  • Prepare a “moving day essentials” box of the things you’ll need during your trip
  • Donate uneaten food

If needed, consider taking pictures of your clean home to document that it’s in good condition.

The Day of Your Move

The big day is here! With all of your organization and planning, the things you’ll need to do are basic:

  • Do a final check of your home
  • Tip your movers
  • Give yourself a minute to say goodbye

From there, it’s time to head to your new home!

Use This Simple Moving Out of State Checklist

With a moving out of state checklist in hand, the challenge of a long-distance move can get a little easier. Though you’ll still have plenty of work to do in documenting and organizing the move, checking off each step can help you stay on track as the big day approaches.

Looking for more helpful guides like this one? Our other posts are packed with tips on making the most of your home and real estate, so check them out to learn more!

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