Moving timeline calendar page

Timeline for Moving to a New House

Everyone wants to know the best moving timeline and when to start the moving process. Unfortunately, there is no cut-and-dry answer. Every move involves a different-sized home, owned by people with different abilities and available time. So, while there is no specific answer, here is a suggested timeline, with each step playing a role in ensuring a smooth and stress-free transition.

1. Start Decluttering Immediately After Deciding to Move

Whenever the decision is made that you are going to be moving, you should instantly start decluttering. Decide what you want to bring and what you don’t need/use anymore. Even if you are moving into a bigger home, there is no excuse for moving items you never use and bringing clutter to your new home.

2. Get Moving Estimates 2–3 Months Before Moving

You should reach out to moving companies for estimates around 2 months before you would like to move. Estimates can always be adjusted through a phone call after a visit if something changes or hasn’t been determined yet. At least this way, the companies will have your info and be prepared to go when you are ready.

This timeframe varies depending on the size of your home and where you are going. If you are going long distance, around 3 months ahead of time is probably better. If you’re moving out of a small apartment or hiring packers, one or one-and-a half months is fine.

If you are deciding between hiring packers or doing it yourself, we have an article that will explain your options and help you decide which one will suit you best.

We also have more in-depth tips articles (including General Moving, Apartment Moving, Senior Living Moving, and Long Distance Moving) that guide you through packing.

3. Start Packing 5–10 Weeks Before Moving

It is crucial to start packing out this far to get a sense of how long it will take to pack up the rest of your belongings. At this stage, begin by packing items that are not frequently used, out-of-season items, and storage items. This will help you make progress and stay organized throughout the packing process.

You should also start thinking of the layout of your new home so you can make decisions on which furniture to bring and finish the decluttering/downsizing process. 

4. Continue Packing 2–4 Weeks Before Moving

Begin packing the rest of the house, from decorations to dishes to clothes. Pack everything non-essential and only leave what you will use for the last few weeks. Again, depending on the size of the home and the time you have available, you may want to start earlier or later. Still, it’s always better to give yourself one more week than you think you need.

5. Finish Packing 1 Week Before Moving

Confirm arrangements with your moving company and finish packing, leaving only essentials for the final days leading up to the move.

6. Complete Final Preparations 1–2 Days Before Moving

Pack your “moving day essentials” box with items you’ll need immediately upon arrival at your new home. Pack up everything besides what you need to get ready for move-day morning. Then, conduct a final walkthrough of your home to ensure it is ready for the movers and nothing has been overlooked.

7. Moving Day Timeline

Morning: Rise early and pack everything you left out to get ready. Try to leave time to eat a good breakfast, as your day will be very busy, and lunchtime may vary.

Load: When the movers arrive, you will give them a walkthrough of what goes and what stays. After that, you can do as you like while the crew gets to work; just be available to answer any questions.

After the Load: When the load is complete, do a final sweep of each room with the movers to ensure nothing is left behind. The moving crew will then confirm the unload address and notify you if they are grabbing a quick bite to eat or heading straight there.

The Unload: Your only job during the unload is to direct the movers. As they come in, let them know where you would like your furniture, boxes, and other belongings to be placed.

After the Unload: Once the truck is empty, do a final walk-through of your home to ensure everything is where it needs to be and that you are happy with everything. Pending on the movers, you will likely be shown the invoice and can pay on the spot. Then the big day is over. Congratulations!

Top Notch Moving Timeline

Moving day is the culmination of months of planning and preparation. By staying organized and following a timeline, you can ensure a smooth move, saving you money and unnecessary stress.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Top Notch Moving. We are happy to discuss your moving timeline or to help in any way we can.