Moving Checklist

6-8 Weeks Before

  • Go through your belongings one room at a time. 
  • Your church or other similar organizations will happily accept items that are still in usable condition: books, clothing, kitchen utensils, sports equipment, decor and more.
  • Remember, the more you decide to keep, the more you'll need to pack, move and unpack in your next place!


  • No one likes unexpected costs.
  • Put a cap on what the move would likely cost you.
  • Don't know where to start? Look up moving companies in your city and get some realistic quotes. These quotes with put your move into perspective; at least money wise.

Dig up your rental agreement and read through all the fine print to figure out exactly what your landlord or property manager's policies are when moving out. Since your security deposit depends on you meeting all their rules, spend time scrutinizing the details. 

Read up on rules and requirements for:

  • Intent to move notification: how far in advance you need to notify your landlord or property manager, and how they'd like to be notified (certified mail, email or via an online portal)
  • Apartment condition and cleanliness
  • Sending security deposits

Because your lease agreement is a formal legal document (meaning you're contractually obligated to follow the rules), it's best to stick to the script here. Contact your landlord or property management company and ask them to outline everything they expect from you before, during and after your move. Some properties want to schedule a pre-move walk through and see if there are any minor repairs you need to take care of before you leave. Others have strict policies around cleaning or shampooing carpets. You'll never know until you ask!

4 Weeks Before

  • Resist the urge to skip this task! After all, you need to get moving (literally) at some point! 
  • Your main goal is to make sure that you have everything you need to START packing. 
  • Focus on one room at a time, grab your Moving Supplies list and make an inventory list (on your phone, PC, or paper) of every single thing in the room. 


  • You don't want to get stuck without a truck on moving day! Moving trucks book out early--especially if you plan on moving around the 1st of the month.
  • The earlier you reserve, the better your chances of snagging the right sized truck at a convenient location and reasonable price.
  • And if you've made room in your budget to hire professional movers--give them a call and schedule the service.


  • Moving day is hectic enough without adding "keeping the kids safe" to your list of things to do. The bottom line is: open doors, movers and heavy furniture just don't mix with little ones. 
  • Arrange all-day care for the kids; drop them off before the movers arrive and pick them up after the last box makes it to your new place.

2-3 Weeks Before

  • Don't risk losing out on your security deposit because you didn't fix a few minor things before moving out. Instead, ask your Landlord or Property Manager to come by and finalize your "fix it" list with you.
  • Most Lease Agreements only require Tenants to repair cosmetic damages.
  • After you have a clear idea of what needs to be done, hire a handyman or do it yourself if you can!

Take a deep breath--let's do this! 

Before we get started, check that you've got the following handy:

  • Packing tape
  • Tape gun (optional, but HIGHLY recommended)
  • Boxes
  • Permanent markers
  • Colored Paper: designate (1) color per room

The thought of packing up every single thing you own into boxes is intimidating, but we're going to let you in on a game-changing approach that makes the process a lot easier to manage. 

Ready? Okay, here it is:

    Looking for more packing tips? Download our guide!

    After a brutal day of moving and cleaning, simple things like electricity and an Internet connection go a long way to make you feel better. 

    If this is the first time you're transferring service from one place to another--don't worry! Download our step-by-step guide and make sure that, before you even unpack a single box, your new apartment will have the basic comforts of home

    Like the items on your "fix it" list, your security deposit depends on you meeting the cleaning requirements outlined in your lease. 

    And we're not talking about sweeping the floors and wiping the crumbs off your counters here. Most Landlords or Property Managers expect every surface of the place to be squeaky clean when a tenant moves out. 

    Depending on how busy you are, you might want to consider using a cleaning company. Luckily, you still have some time to shop around and check out different services or even find a deal!

    7 Days Before

    This task is especially important if you're moving more than a few kilometers away. You'd be surprised how time spent sitting in traffic or getting lost on unfamiliar streets can throw a wrench in your moving day schedule! 

    Log onto Google Maps, enter your current address as the starting point, and your new one as the destination. Then, adjust the "leaving now" time and date to reflect the day and time you plan to start your move. 

    This is also a good time to look for gas stations and places to stop and grab a quick bite along your route!

    Put together a Contact Info Sheet for everyone you've enlisted to help you move. 

    Your list should look something like this: 

    Name: First Last 

    Phone number: 555-555-5555 

    Role: friend helping move out of current apartment 

    Payment: Food & Drinks 

    Schedule: 8-10am 

    Address: Meeting at my current place 

    Confirmed Y/N:  

    Call everyone on your list and confirm scheduled times, location, cost and preferred form of payment.

    Now that you have a nice, itemized list of moving day costs, head to the bank and withdraw what you need to cover everything. Make sure to visit your bank during business hours so you can also pick up a Bank Draft for the Security Deposit and first month's rent at your new apartment. This is important because most Landlords and Property Managers won't accept cash or a personal check for those items--and some banks don't charge an additional fee for them--so play it safe and get them just in case. 

    Put each payment in a plain envelope, seal it and write who it's for clearly on the front. For your "cash only" vendors, enclose the exact amount--because there's a good chance they won't be able to give you any change. Traditionally your movers and cleaning crew won't expect a tip--but they'll certainly appreciate bottled water! Plan on having a few on ice when they arrive. 

    Keep all these envelopes together (preferably in a folder or manila envelope) and store it in a place where it won't get lost or forgotten.

    Meet with your new Landlord or Property Management Company and make your new move official! And don't forget to bring the Bank Draft you picked up from the bank! 

    This is also a great time to ask for more information about their "moving in" policies and procedures. Like whether or not you need to reserve elevator access, designated loading zones and what time you can pick up your new key!

    3-4 Days Before

    At this point, your entire home should be in boxes except for items set to go into your "Pack Last" and "Open First" boxes. 

    Your Moving Inventory List helps you keep track of everything you have: the number of boxes, furniture pieces, etc. Check items off the list as you load them into the truck, and cross them off the list as they arrive in your new place. If you're moving long-distance or insured any of your things, include notes about the condition of specific items so you have something to reference in case anything is damaged in transit or goes missing. Create your own list from scratch, or download our template to get started.

    Day of the Move

    If you've hired movers, ask them to huddle up as soon as they arrive and hand them a copy of your Moving Inventory List. 

    Explain your color-coding room system, point out any fragile or heavy items, give them a rundown on the day's schedule, confirm they have your new address and coordinate the route they'll take to get there. 

    If everything goes as it should, you'll be out of there in no time!

    It's important to inspect your new home BEFORE you start bringing in your furniture and boxes. 

    Go room-by-room; turn light switches on and off, test the appliances and outlets. Use the camera on your phone to snap photos of anything that appears broken, chipped or damaged. Then write yourself a few notes about each issue including a short description and where it's located in your apartment. 

    Once you've completed your inspection, call your Landlord or property Manager ASAP to give them a rundown of what you've found. That way they can't hold you responsible for the repairs--after all, you haven't even moved anything in yet!

    Our Inspection tool will come in handy here. Check it out 

    You still have unfinished business there 

    Clean it from top to bottom. If you've hired a cleaning crew, ask them to huddle up before getting started so you can give them specific instructions and directions on what needs to be cleaned. 

    Once the cleaning is underway, do a final walkthrough of your old place. Open all the closets and cupboards, unplug appliances (if needed) and throw out any remaining trash.

    Return the key to your old place to your Landlord or Property Manager. 

    ... And that's it! Congrats on successfully moving into your new place!