Kayla Coco-Stotts
June 22, 2021
Article type:
Moving Help & Tips
Applies to:
All Moving

The Bailey’s Moving & Storage Post-Move Checklist

1.) Make Sure Utilities Are Set Up

Make sure to contact the utilities in charge of your home setup so you can get them arranged immediately. You can also do this before your move, but it’s not necessary. Examples of utilities you typically need to set up include water, electricity, gas, and internet.

A quick tip, make sure you’ve also called to stop service on the utilities for your old home. Don’t count on the new owner to set everything up correctly. If they don’t, you’ll be stuck paying utilities for two locations. By placing a stop on your previous home's utilities, the new residents will be responsible to place those bills into their name and you won’t pay the extra bill if they don’t.

2.) Give Everything a Quick Clean

Before you settle in and unpack, go through the empty space and dust or wipe down all surfaces. Heavily trafficked areas that are often overlooked include doorknobs and cabinet fixtures. Giving your new space an initial clean will eliminate irritants like dust while also sanitizing the unoccupied space before you unpack your household items.

You can also use this as a chance to inspect your dwelling for any damage that requires repairing. If you have carpets, now might be a good time to clean them or replace them, if needed. It’s easier to move household goods around when they’re still packed.  

3.) Find the Electrical Panel and Water Shutoff Valves

You should know where the electrical panel and shutoff water valves are in case of emergency. Consider how to shut off your gas, where to find a blown fuse, and where to inspect the water heater/furnace.

If you live in an apartment and have difficulty finding these items, be sure to contact your landlord or apartment manager so they can inform you where everything is.  

4.) Unpack Everything (This Doesn’t Have to Happen in a Day!)  

Start with the necessities, then move to appliances and items that’ll make life more comfortable. Things like décor, furnishings, and seasonal wear can wait until you’ve had ample time to recover from the stress of your move.  

Work at it little by little. Give care and consideration to where everything is going without having to stress yourself out. You know the saying... “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” Your new curated, lovely space wasn’t designed in a day either. Start in the highest-trafficked rooms first: kitchen, then bedrooms, then bathrooms, and then other rooms.

5.) Check the Condition of Your Belongings After Transit

As you unpack, take stock of everything. Make sure nothing is missing and compare it all to your itemized inventory. Be sure to take pictures of items as-is in their boxes, then again after you’ve unpacked them. Document any damage with images. You’ll use these images later if you need to file a claim with your moving company.  

6.) Recycle Your Packing Materials

Moving doesn’t have to mean creating unnecessary waste. Once you’ve unpacked your boxes, you’ll notice a fair amount of packing materials leftover from the move. You can discard them in several ways, none of which must lead to landfills.  

For example, you can donate materials to friends/family in need, or list them for pickup on sites like Facebook Marketplace. You can also keep and store them if you plan to move again soon. Lastly, your mover might have a service to pick up used boxes from you. Check with your mover to see if they offer this service.

Ultimately, moving boxes and packing paper can be recycled. Styrofoam sheets and bubble wrap may be recycled, depending on your local recycling regulations. Most plastic film can be taken to local grocery stores; you can recycle bubble wrap on your first trip to stock your fridge.

If you’re unfamiliar with your new location’s recycling practices, feel free to visit to find places you can donate or recycle your packing materials.  

7.) Collect Your Moving Receipts

Make sure to keep all your moving documents organized and accessible for future use. If you relocated for work, you may qualify to claim the cost of your move as a deduction on your federal income tax return. For more information on whether you qualify, check out this IRS interactive tax assistant.  

In addition to facilitating potential deductions, moving receipts can also be useful if you need to file a claim. They’re also helpful for record-keeping if you choose to move again down the line.

8.) Update Your Address Everywhere That’s Applicable

At this point in the process, you’ve unpacked and settled into your new space. You’ve probably said a quick hello to neighbors, and you’ve finally memorized the route to work.  

One of the final steps to completing your move is ensuring your address is updated everywhere. This applies to several places, but most commonly refers to:

  • The post office
  • The IRS and your state tax agency
  • The SSA (If you receive benefits)
  • Home, renters’, and auto insurance
  • Financial agencies (Such as banks, loan agencies, and credit agencies)
  • Subscription services and utilities
  • Medical care (Including family medicine, primary care providers, and veterinary medicine)

9.) Write a Moving Review

Finally, the last step you’ll find in your post-move checklist is to write a moving review. Though it may seem trivial to write a review on your moving experience, moving reviews have an impact on members of your community who are researching potential movers.

To put it into perspective, a 2016 Pew Research Study found that 82% of American adults say they read online reviews before making online purchases. In contrast, only an average of 1.5% of people write online reviews, according to an MIT study in 2011.  

Even if your experience could only be described as average or forgettable, leaving moving reviews informs businesses on how they can improve their services, educates potential future customers, and recognizes exceptional experiences (both good and bad).