Moving to a new home is the beginning of an exciting new chapter in your life, but can often be a logistical headache. Whether you are making the move across the country, or just down the street, there are plenty of details to consider.
Here is a handy list for apartment-dwellers who are navigating the ins and outs of packing, hiring movers and insuring their home and belongings.
Collect used boxes to cut packing costs
Visit your local grocer, liquor store or bookstore to pick up some free used boxes. If you are hiring professional movers, double check to see if they require you to use a certain type of boxes. When packing time comes around, make sure to label your boxes with their contents so you will be able to find things once you are at your new apartment.
Book the elevators at your current and new building
Most buildings will have policies around move-in days. You will likely be asked to pay a fee to reserve either elevator and to have it padded for protection against damage.
Hire a reliable moving company
Do your due diligence when choosing professional movers — you’ll be trusting them to safely deliver every item you own. The Government of Canada recommends hiring companies that are members of the Canadian Association of Movers to ensure that they are trustworthy and properly insured.
Find out exactly what the movers are responsible for and what you are responsible for. Note that moving companies may not move some special items, like pianos.
Insure your belongings while they are in-transit
Protect your belongings against any bumps in the road, or an accidental slip of the fingers. Most moving companies should have the proper coverage for a basic household move, usually calculated by the weight of your belongings. This coverage does not include items of particularly great value like works of art — those items will need to be declared. Double check your agreement to see exactly what your movers will do and what they are liable for. Depending on the company, boxes you have packed yourself may not be covered.
You may want to purchase additional insurance to protect your valuables — especially if the amount for which your mover is liable does not cover the estimated value of your contents. If you are not using a moving company, you will likely not have any coverage in between your old home and your new one.
Make parking arrangements
Whether you’ve hired professional movers or enlisted the help of your friends and their van, you will need somewhere near the door to park at both places to make loading and unloading easier. Check your building’s policies and obtain any necessary permits from your municipality for street parking.
Create an inventory of what you have packed
Without a complete list of the contents of your moving truck, it will be difficult to file a claim for lost or damaged property. Make an inventory that you share with the moving company ahead of time so there is no doubt as to what should be arriving at your new place. In Canada, you are required to make any moving-related claims within 30-60 days of your move.
Carry valuable items with you on moving day
Pack your more precious items — passports, cell phones, laptops — in a bag that you can keep with you on the day of your move. Back up your electronics and keep an eye on your wallets and purses. There will be a lot of strangers around, whether they are the movers walking in and out of your place or people passing through the building.
Transfer your home insurance
Homeowners or tenants insurance is based on the specifications of your individual home, so when you move your coverage will need to be adjusted. Alert your insurance company of your move well in advance.
If you have already insured your home, you are not likely to need a new policy and can transfer the coverage you have already purchased over to your new property. If you will be moving in gradually, you may need to insure both properties simultaneously. Talk to an Axis Insurance Group professional to find out what the right coverage will be for you.