Better Move Planner

A checklist for planning your move.

Pre-planning is the secret to a good move.

A good moving plan involves setting three important dates... for packing, loading and delivery to your new home. These three dates form a framework for your plan.

If possible, allow a time-span of 30 days. This will let you schedule your activities wisely.

Choose your moving day carefully. Avoid peak periods if possible: the first few days of the month, and the last few days of the month. These are the times when everyone wants to move.

A good checklist is essential. Start planning early, and you'll be surprised how smoothly things go.


  • Have an inventory session.  Decide what to move, what not to move.
  • Make arrangements for trip (hotel/airline reservations, routing, etc.).
  • Schedule a moving sale for items you won't move. Donate other items to charitable organizations (get receipt for tax records).
  • Arrange for packing. We recommend you have North American do it for you. If you pack yourself, the special cartons you will need are available from northAmerican.
  • Gather personal records: medical, dental, school, birth, baptismal, marriage, etc. Arrange to send transcripts of school records in advance to new schools.
  • Close local department store and other charge accounts.
  • Arrange with employer to forward tax withholding forms.
Make arrangements to discontinue:
  • Newspaper delivery
  • Water softener service
  • Electricity (the day after you move; check for refund)
  • Water service
  • Gas service (check for refund)
  • Telephone service (the day after your goods are loaded)
  • Fuel or oil delivery
  • Garbage collection
  • Diaper service
  • Lawn/pool service
  • Internet service
  • Make advance arrangements for these services in your new location.
Notify others of your change of address:
  • Post office
  • Social Security office (U.S. only)
  • Insurance companies
  • Credit cards
  • Magazines
  • Friends and relatives
  • Mail order accounts
  • Health Canada (Canada only)
  • Human Resources Canada (Canada only)
  • Provincial Social Services Ministry (Canada only)
  • Other

Just before you move

  • Fill and transfer prescriptions for family and pets. Pack them to travel with you.
  • Arrange for shipment of plants and' pets. Get immunization records for pets.
  • Safely dispose of or give away all flammables (paints, paint removers, propane tanks, etc.) as they cannot be moved due to federal DOT and Transport Canada regulations.
  • To prevent possible problems, such as mildew, thoroughly air-dry your refrigerator and freezer. Arrange for disposal of frozen foods (sell, give away, or eat). Clean oven.
  • Transfer checking and savings accounts.
  • Drain fuel and oil from lawnmowers and other power equipment.
  • Drain garden hoses.
  • Pack items to be carried in car. Label "Do Not Move."
  • Gather valuables from safe deposit box, drawers, jewelry cases, personal records, etc. Valuable items like these should travel with you... not in a moving van.
  • Send clothing, draperies, curtains, rugs out for cleaning and leave in wrapping. Take down curtain rods, shelves, TV antenna.
  • Have car serviced for trip and have proof of insurance in car.
  • Other

Moving Day

  • Remember to pack a box of the basics you'll need on move-in day (tools, paper products, all-purpose household cleaners, etc.). Be sure to have it loaded last so that they will be first off at your new home.
  • Pack suitcases for trip.
  • Remove all bed linens.
  • Be available to check items on inventory sheet.
  • Conduct a last minute walk-through with your van operator. Make sure windows are closed, closets empty, lights out and doors locked.

Delivery Day

  • Be available to check off items on the inventory as they are removed from the van.
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