Five Things to Remember when Moving House


Five Things to Remember When Moving House

According to common wisdom (i.e. I don’t have a source, so don’t ask) moving house is one of the most stressful things a person can do in their lifetime. I’m pretty sure it’s somewhere between ‘getting divorced’ and ‘fleeing the country due to unspecified crime’. Unfortunately for students, moving house is an annual event for at least three consecutive years, with much more moving to follow after graduating if you choose to stick around. The main source of stress when moving is often the associated jobs and tasks, which are pretty easy to forget in the tumultuous every day life of a student. Here are 5 things to remember when moving house:


Confirm all the details!

This may well sound either very basic or vaguely patronizing depending on your disposition, but it’s absolutely essential to make sure everyone is on the same page – particularly in a shared house. If you and your housemates are moving in at different times, make sure at least one of you has arranged a moving date and a time and place to get the keys from your new landlord or letting agent. The last thing you want is to be locked out with an armful of boxes. You should also make sure you know the full details of your deposit – your money should be safe in a deposit scheme, but you really need to know what it is and how you can get it back.



Another fundamental point, but an important one – make sure you have appropriate transport for moving day. If you’re lucky enough to have friends/parents who are willing to help, then take advantage and bribe them with pizza if necessary. If this isn’t an option for you, or none of your friends drive, then you may have to make alternative arrangements. Hiring a van is a possibility, but you’ll need an experienced driver to do this. Another option is to get yourself a man in a van. Seriously. Google ‘man in a van’ in your area – there are always blokes with vans who are happy to lug stuff about for a reasonable fee. Plus this way you get to spend the day with a potentially surly stranger, so it’s win-win really.


Change of address (banks, uni, doctors, council tax exemption, electoral register)

The most irritating part of moving is forgetting who you’ve told about your new address. I’m sure the people who live in my old flat have thoroughly enjoyed receiving unsolicited pay slips, letters, takeaway curries and saucy negligee due to by forgetfulness. Except the negligee – I made that up. Honestly. Anyway, to avoid similar embarrassment, make sure you notify everyone you can about your new address. The key ones to remember are: your bank/building society, the university, your employers, the doctors, the dentist, and any sites you shop with online. You may also want to make sure you’re on the electoral register if you plan on voting this summer. You’ll also need to obtain a council tax exemption certificate from your university and provide it to the council. This is all desperately boring, but desperately essential unfortunately, so don’t forget!



When it comes to packing I’ve witnessed numerous systems, some of which are more successful than others. Chucking everything in Tesco bags and throwing it into the boot of a taxi is a method I wouldn’t recommend from experience. While you’re hardly likely to create a complex system of box numbering (Box 17b – lint rollers and combs), installing some semblance of organization to your packing process will help considerably at the other end. Try to think about what you’ll need last when leaving your current place (clothes, laptop, toiletries etc) and what you’ll need first when arriving at your new house (tea, coffee, lots of booze).



When you’re finally in your house, make sure to do a quick sweep of the place before you start unpacking and/or sacking the whole thing off and going to the pub. You’ll need to go round and look for any damage to furniture and fixtures etc, and note them down in your inventory. Taking photo evidence might also be worth considering too, if you have the time and wherewithal to do so. This all sounds obsessive and cynical but many deposits are lost over superficial and pre-existing damage to a property – particularly in student houses, where landlords can get away with it. Make sure you remember to take a reading of your gas and electricity meters when you move in too, as you’ll have to submit this to your energy providers. Once all this is done, you can sit back and relax – just the unpacking to do now!