The pressures of moving house seem to come at you from all sides. Just when you’re looking forward and straight ahead, an unexpected hurdle trips you up; when the weight of upheaval is close to dragging you down, a mishap or miscalculation knocks you sideways. With all the big issues needing so much attention, it’s sometimes easy to neglect the little tasks that keep everything running smoothly and in place. But hey, we wouldn’t want to cramp your style and put the brakes on that pending housewarming party. Oh no. Best to get all the admin out the way before you switch homes and christen the place. With that in mind, here are 5 IDEAL things to do as soon as you move house.
ARRANGE YOUR UTILITIES OR SWITCH PROVIDERS
You settle into your new home, a little worn and argued out, and dusty from the move. All you want is a long, hot shower. All well and good until you realise you don’t have any hot water or electricity. Avoid this by setting up utilities in your name, in advance – from the day you move in – so you’ll be accurately paying for your usage and not the previous occupants’. While we’re on the subject, get a final reading on your current meters and inform your providers so that you get the correct final bill. Most energy providers can redirect your bills to eliminate hassle and fuss.
This is something that can be well ahead of time to save you the stress of arriving at your new home without the essentials already place Not only that, but very often you can save money. In fact visiting a site like simplyswitch.com preemptively can save you upwards of a few hundred pounds per year. Since provider rates vary wildly by region you could find yourself saving money in the move.
MOVE YOUR TV LICENCE
Yep, you do still need one. And nope, simply accessing iPlayer via your laptop doesn’t negate that necessity. Indeed, when you move home your TV Licence doesn’t automatically move with you; if only it were that simple. Instead, you need to change the address on your licence – you can do this online up to three months before you move, ready for those binge rewatches of Fleabag when you arrive.
UPDATE YOUR ADDRESS EARLY
About two weeks before the big move, you should start calling anybody who needs your new address and informing them of the change. Your doctor, dentist, bank and credit card provider will all need to know your new address (you don’t want that embarrassing letter from the clinic falling into the wrong hands, after all) but it can take time for their system to get updated.
If you do this ahead of time then there won’t be any gaps in your service or admin issues by the time you move. Of course, it goes without saying that you’ll overlook somebody or something – you’re only human – and neglect to update your address. For a small fee you can have the Royal Mail forward any mail arriving at your old address for a time. Remember, you can be fined up to £1,000 if you fail to tell the DVLA that you have moved address, so prioritise them.
SORT OUT YOUR COUNCIL TAX
If you’re staying in the same area (nope, we can’t drag ourselves away from Brixton either) then you can ignore this. Move on to the next point, posthaste! But if you are moving further afield then you’ll want to make sure that you’ve set up a new council tax account online. Make sure to do this about a month before you leave to keep ahead of the game; there’ll be plenty more headaches closer to your time of moving.
Remember that you are responsible for paying council tax from the day you move into your new house so if you’re not prepared by that point then you’ll find yourself paying more later as they will backdate the payments due. Don’t be sloppy.
BOOK YOUR REMOVAL COMPANY WELL IN ADVANCE
As soon as you’ve sold your house and know the date that you plan to be in your new house or flat, then you should call a local mover. These days the most trustworthy can get booked up months in advance. And you certainly don’t want to be left scrambling for somebody last minute who might drop that antique vase you’ve done your best thus far to keep in one piece. In this case you may even need to pay extra since you aren’t in a position to negotiate with the mover. Supply, demand, and all that. Seek a few quotes from various local movers before you commit to any; you can only do this when you have the time to shop around by booking in advance.