by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
For the majority of people contemplating a move, the part that involves the actual moving is the most mind-boggling. Buying a new residence is exhilarating—commencing upon a new chapter in life, whether you are buying your dream residence in Oklahoma City or getting something smaller, there is something about a move that makes you feel like you are starting anew. Then, you look at all your dirty old belongings and that hot air balloon you're riding over the stars to your new digs comes back to earth and you find yourself in a stack of old books and kid's artwork that you need to deal with. But, if you organize your move and adhere to an easy checklist, you can most likely pack your life and move it to Oklahoma City without a lot of uneasiness and headaches.
It's average to have a moving timespan of roughly 3 months, so this timeline assumes you've got that much time to work on your move. All that is needed to begin is a large file folder.
Three Months Out
Select your moving company—decide if you desire full-service moving or you want to do it yourself or a service level in the middle, sort of an a la carte option. A moving specialist comes by your home and walks through to estimate how many moving vans and how much packing material you will require, calculate time to load, transport, and unload, and give you a quote for other services, like packing, disassembling furniture, and managing storage, if necessary. Once you select your moving company and services needed, be sure to verify you are in their books. Keep a copy of the quote in your folder. One big thing down!
It's never too soon to begin purging—what to give to a charity, throw away, or take with you. How you go about the task is up to you, what is best for some people doesn't work for all. Ignore all the blogs and YouTube videos and move forward with what works for you—one afternoon you may clean out closets and go ahead and pack up what is moving, the next day you could choose to continue purging and leave things where they are. There really is no right way to accomplish it, so don't worry if you don't follow the "rules".
Two Months Out
This is normally when it gets real—the docket is somehow moving quicker than it should be, and the truth is that besides choosing your moving company and trashing takeout menus and a few items that you haven’t worn in years, you haven't completed a thing.
If you will be leaving your place of employment and haven't talked over your move with your manager, now is a great time--it provides them the time to train someone to pick up where you are leaving off so they are ready when you leave.
If you've decided to manage your own packing, reconsider. Assistance is at your fingertips; your moving company can send in the Calvary with professional packers to handle the job—they'll schedule dates closer to your move because they come in and get it done quick as a wink, and you'll need your bed sheets and the coffee pot until the final day.
Alert your service providers that you'll be leaving—if your move is not a long distance, give your yard service the new address and you're done. Beyond that, here are several of the crucial ones.
Medical—doctors, orthodontists, dentists
Any more, most doctors are part of bigger networks and your records are available if you switch doctors. Ask your general practitioner for recommendations. They network well and have old friends from medical school they can recommend. While dentists and orthodontists don't have those networks, they'll help refer you old-school, also.
As pharmacies merge you could be able to keep your current pharmacy chain, but just in case keep hard copies of all your prescriptions in your file folder so that you will have them on hand in the event of a glitch along the path. The last thing you need is to run out of blood pressure medication the day you are loading the truck and have to finagle with a new pharmacy.
If you have children in school, enrolling them in a new school district is a necessary evil—you need every document in existence to register them—birth certificate, social security info, proof of address (a copy of your contract if you haven't closed in Oklahoma City yet), and immunization records at least. Ask exactly what you will need, and get ahead of the game and put all the important paperwork in a safe place—the file folder.
If you have kids in college and you are moving to a different state, find out the process for keeping in-state tuition. Each state has different guidelines, and the reasons for the move and the distance can be a deciding factor—some states allow in-state tuition if you are moving to a contiguous state.
Keep sorting and packing—make a goal for a room a week, or all the closets in a week.
One Month Out
By now you should have purged, arranged, and have all your non-essentials in neatly packed and labeled boxes in an out-of-the-way place. Right. Now is when you get fierce with purging--especially if you have opted to have the moving company pack all of the stuff that is left. It is fascinating how really unnecessary that old lamp becomes when you don't like it anyway and now it is going to cost you to move it. So, trash it and keep sorting.
Activities--Community, Religious, Social
If, by chance, you have neglected to tell anyone that you are moving, now is the time. Especially any volunteer activities you're a part of, and if you are chairing committees or on any boards, you should have already alerted the groups so they can fill the gap you are creating. Do not forget to pass off the files or records you have (Girl Scout cookie moms) to the person stepping into your old role. If you're part of a nationwide organization, (Rotary, Junior League) prepare your transfer documents--you can usually do these online.
Most mainline churches and synagogues provide the opportunity to transfer memberships; once you are settled and have established a new religious home, they will take care of that for you when you're ready to be a part of a new church home.
If you're a member of any social organization, you will need to change your membership--depending on the by-laws, you might be able to keep a non-resident status when you move to Oklahoma City.
Activities--Youth Sports, Clubs
If you have kids, you will have the joy of looking for new play groups, piano teachers, basketball teams, and dance studios. The excellent news is that club level teams are everywhere, if your kids are into sports. And, searching online is a good way to source out other kid's groups. Don’t forget that everyone has an opinion, but you'll at least be able to get a good basket of contacts for karate and art lessons.
Two Weeks and Counting
Call all your utilities and set up the end-service request. Don't forget your internet and cable--you may be able to just switch some services if your provider is in your new area as well (gas, electric, TV, internet) but unless you're local you will most likely need new accounts. Set up your new accounts as you end the old ones, and do not forget the mail. You can set up your new home address and delivery stop dates online, and if you require a Post Office box you can set up that online also.
If you are moving long distance, confirm travel reservations or airline tickets. If you're moving with your pets, ensure the hotels allow animals.
One Week to Go!
Imagine you're departing on vacation and pack a bag or two, so you can get everything else prepared to move. Conduct a “Clean Out the Fridge” week, and use paper plates if possible so that you can box up the rest of the kitchen.
If you are moving any plants from your yard, wait until the last day to dig the plants up, and place them in large tubs for the move.
Verify with the movers what time they will be at your home to commence loading.
You're ready to move. You have got everything prepared to be loaded on the trucks, so hang onto your folder, unplug the coffee pot and get moving.