So – it’s official! My wife, Melissa and I have moved into our new house – and we’re loving it. To continue on my home-buying theme, I thought it was important to talk about how we prepared ourselves for the move and share tips to alleviate some of the stresses.
I’ll start with a common-sense concept – being organized. Try as hard as you may to be ready, things are going to fall through the cracks. For us, there were a few unexpected hiccups along the way.
A month before our moving date – I contacted truck rental companies to arrange a moving truck. Melissa and I had decided that we could handle one last DIY move. Given the timing of the year (end of June); many rental companies were unable to provide us with the equipment that we needed. Thankfully, there are a number of options in the KW area. Make sure you have this arranged sooner rather than later – best advice: once you know your moving date, call for movers or equipment right away!
At that one month mark – you should also make it a priority to finalize everything with your Mortgage lender. Make sure they have all the confirmations they asked for (paystubs, ID, confirmation of down payment, purchase agreements etc.); and arrange a time to sign your documents. If possible, ask your lender to mail your copies to the new house after closing so they don’t get lost amongst your other boxes and personal effects.
About two weeks prior to our closing date, I followed-up with the lawyer to make sure we were ready to sign our paperwork. Unfortunately for us, the office we intended to use was at capacity and couldn’t help us out. We were in a bit of a panic to find a new law office – but it all worked out. My advice, contact your lawyer about a month before your closing date; do not leave this to the last minute! Your real estate lawyer must go through a series of pre-work items before you sign – the more time you can give them, the better!
The week before our move date, we started packing. This was plenty of time to get our boxes organized, labelled and arranged; it also gave us a little bit of time to purge items we no longer wanted or needed. This is key! Move only what you want to move – the extra set of golf clubs you’ve been holding onto for years are ready to find a new forever home.
If you are employing the moving services of family and friends, it’s best to be in touch with them a few days prior to the moving day. Confirm when and where they should arrive, if you need them to bring anything (ex. dollies, tie-downs, tools, blankets etc.), and give them a rough estimate of the time they are needed for. Despite my best efforts, I had two of my five helpers back out. Knowing this in advance of the actual move date really helped ease the anxiety.
On moving day, make sure you keep your necessities accessible. You’re going to want to have cash, phone chargers, coolers, food, medication, a first aid kit, disposable plates/cups and garbage bags at the ready. Melissa and I made sure that both locations and vehicles had supplies in them. This kept us from having to run out to the corner or grocery store for anything on moving day.
If you have pets – you should consider leaving them with a family member, friend or boarding them for the day. Our dog Ollie wasn’t an exception to the rule – he’s very well-behaved and always tries to be helpful, but his involvement wasn’t necessary. So, he went to stay with Grandma for the day.
Lastly, I would strongly recommend that you focus on keeping things simple. I did not… I had booked an appliance delivery and cable installation on the moving day. In hindsight, it just complicated things – it meant I had to work around the schedules of others more than I wanted to. Yes, it was nice to have the WiFi ready on day 1; but it really wasn’t necessary. The fridge, stove and dishwasher didn’t get hooked up until later in the week, so having them take up room was really no benefit to me. Focus on what’s important, get everything to the new location without damaging it; and keep your moving team (and yourself) comfortable, happy and safe.
Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day – and no one expects your house to look like it belongs on the cover of a magazine while you are moving in.
For more information about moving and the home buying process – check out CMHC’s website: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/co/buho/hostst/index.cfm