Moving house is ranked alongside divorce and bereavement as one of the most stressful things in life.
Many find the process quite intimidating, as there is so much to plan and organise; not to mention the huge sums of money involved in a house purchase. Below is a selection of the more common questions people ask regarding a house move.
Where can I get a quote for moving house?
It is wise to obtain several quotes from removal companies in your area, and compare them to find the cheapest and most suitable for your move.
There are plenty of online resources where you can enter your details and receive quotes from up to six local removal firms automatically. This can help to take away some of the hassle of finding phone numbers and contact details.
Most removal firms will give you a rough price over the phone, but would expect to send a company representative to your property to estimate the size of the task, before giving you a full and accurate quotation.
Can I move myself?
If you are moving on a budget then carrying out the move by yourself, or with friends and family, can be a good way of keeping the cost down. You would need to hire a van or even a lorry, but bear in mind you need category C on your driving licence to drive a vehicle over 7.5 tonne.
If you are only moving a short distance it can be quite easy to move on your own, as you have the luxury of being able to make several trips if necessary; but if you have a long way to travel, you must be careful to plan properly to make sure you can fit everything in for the one trip.
One other thing to think about is insurance for your possessions. This will usually be included in the price with a removal firm, but if you are moving yourself, you will need to source your own insurance in case anything gets damaged during the move.
Can I do the packing?
A removal firm will charge something in the region of £150 to pack your house, depending on the size of the house and the amount to be packed. Packing on your own will save a money, and give you the reassurance that your possessions have been packed with the greatest of care.
You can collect empty boxes from most supermarkets and shops, and it’s a good idea to start hoarding them away a few months before the move. Also get hold of as much packing material as you can, such as bubble wrap and polystyrene, and keep that to one side too.
When it comes to packing, don’t over-pack boxes with heavy items; remember you will have to carry them to the van. Try to fill boxes close to the top and fill flush with packing material so they don’t collapse when stacked. You can also use towels, clothes and linen as packing materials to wrap and protect delicate items, to save on packing goods.
How much does it cost to move house?
If you hire a removal firm to pack and move your house you could pay up to £1,000 or more for a two day move. If you pack the house yourself and the move is just one day, you might pay approximately £500-550 (based on a three bedroom detached house).
The size of your house and the amount of possessions you have will affect the cost, as will the area you live in. If you have any items that require specialist moving, such as a piano or large delicate furniture, most removal companies will charge a premium.
If you undertake the move yourself it can be done quite a bit cheaper. You can hire a van for around £90 per day or £200 per weekend; while a larger 7.5 tonne vehicle will cost roughly £140 per day or £250 per weekend.
Involve your friends and family to help with the packing and loading if you can as the move will be done a lot quicker with four or five pairs of willing hands.
Who should I notify when I move house?
When you move house you need to tell everyone you know, and every company, organisation and institute, which has reason to hold your address. This can seem like quite a daunting task, but it helps to write a list of all the contacts and work through them one by one.
Personal contacts include friends and family, doctors and dentists, car insurance, schools and employers.
Financial contacts will include banks, building societies, credit card companies, pension providers, contents and buildings insurers, health and life insurers, shares, premium bonds and savings accounts.
Service providers you should inform include utility companies, mobile phone providers, TV, phone and broadband suppliers, and any service contracts you have for the property.
Important government contacts that need to be informed include the Inland Revenue, the DVLA, the electoral role and the council.
You can print moving address cards from templates online to let friends and family know of the move, and you should also update any memberships and subscriptions that you have, such as sports clubs and newspaper subscriptions.
How can I reduce the stress of moving?
Moving house will be stressful even for the calmest and most prepared of people, but there are some practical things you can do to help relieve the stress. Write out a moving checklist months in advance of the move, listing everything that you have to do, and try to put things in the order that they should be done leading up to the move.
If you give yourself practical tasks to complete in each of the six or eight weeks leading up to the move, you will feel a sense of progress as each thing gets taken care of. Leave as little as possible to the last minute.
Although you will always need to pack the last few essentials before you leave, make sure the moving day is actually about moving, rather than trying to get things ready in a fluster.