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Moving can be a stressful and emotional time. 

Below are some tips to help plan your move so that it is less frustrating for you and your family.






Moving Timeline:



  • Sort through your closets, cupboards, and drawers and determine what you want to take with you.  Hold a yard sale or donate unwanted items to charity.  Safely dispose of any flammable and toxic items such as paint and cleaning fluids.  Most movers will not transport them.

  • Contact several moving companies for estimates and confirm your moving arrangements with the selected company.  Inquire about additional charges.

  • If you are moving into (or out of) a high-rise condominium apartment, contact the property manager to book the use of the moving elevator. A security deposit is often required.

  • Start a moving expenses book. Some of your expenses may be tax deductible

  • If you are moving during the school year, contact your children’s schools and make the necessary arrangements.

  • If moving out of town, make the necessary travel arrangements. 

  • If you have pets and are travelling by plane, call the airline to determine vaccination requirements. If moving out of the country, contact the appropriate embassy or governmental agency about possible quarantine regulations.  

  • Arrange with doctors and dentists to have medical records forwarded and with veterinarians to obtain records for your pets.

  • Contact the post office to have your mail forwarded to your new address.



  • Complete the necessary change of address forms for: Driver’s License, Health Cards, Credit Cards, Bank Accounts, Insurance, License Plates, Magazine and Newspaper Subscriptions, and Memberships.  Inform friends, relatives, and employers of new contact information.

  • Contact your bank manager. Arrange for the transfer of all bank accounts, personal loans, etc., if required. Order cheques for new address.

  • Arrange for utility companies to read meters and disconnect services at your old home and to connect services at your new home before move in date.

  • Arrange to have your phone and cable or satellite TV disconnected at your old home and connected at your new home.

  • Arrange for any rental agreements, such as furnace and hot water tank, to be cancelled and/or transferred to the new owners.

  • Cancel any contracted services such as yard maintenance and cleaning services.

  • Order moving and packing supplies.

  • Retrieve any loaned items and return borrowed items.

  • Arrange to have your pets transported and/or boarded.

  • Draw a floor plan of your new home so that you can pack and label boxes according to the room in which they will be unpacked. 

  • Start using up frozen food and dry goods.

  • Start packing beginning with belongings that you will not need to use in the next few weeks. 



  • Clean area rugs and package or roll them for moving.

  • If moving within the city, arrange to have a friend or family member watch your children and pets.

  • Arrange to have your oil tank filled (if applicable) before your sale closes and give the receipt to your lawyer so that he/she can apply the cost to the closing adjustments.

  • Most movers will not move houseplants and the extremes in temperatures and lack of fresh air and moisture can be fatal to most vegetation.  If you are moving within the city, arrange to have your plants transported to your new home, otherwise make plans to give them away to friends and family.



  • Confirm details with the moving company and ensure they have your cell phone number.

  • Drain garden hoses, lawn mowers, and machinery.

  • Finish packing the remaining boxes.

  • Pack a suitcase with the clothes and toiletries that you will need for the first few days in your new home as well as jewelry, medications, and important financial records and documents.

  • Ensure your pets have up-to-date identification tags with a current phone number.



  • Remove the final items from the refrigerator, defrost and clean and it.

  • Ensure that you have cash on hand to tip the movers.


  • Strip beds and - if you have time - wash and pack bedding and towels.

  • If moving within the city, have a friend or family member pick up your kids and pets.

  • If using a moving company, accompany the movers as they inventory your possessions and make condition reports.  Confirm your new address, delivery date, and cell phone number.

  • Consider instructing movers to place items such as beds last on the truck so they can be unloaded first so family members have a place to sleep at a reasonable time.

  • After the movers have packed the moving truck, take a walk through the premises and ensure that nothing has been left behind.

  • Clean the premises and sweep the floors.

  • Collect all keys, garage door openers, and other remote control devices and leave them on the kitchen counter.  Write down and leave any pass codes for garage doors, alarm, etc.

  • Lock windows and doors, turn off lights, and ensure that the front door is locked.

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  • Try to get to your new home before the moving van arrives.  Check that the utilities have been connected.

  • When the movers arrive, ensure that all items are accounted for and delivered to the appropriate room.


Some moving costs may be tax deductible.  Consult the Canada Revenue Agency for more information.

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