If you’re relocating to another state, it can be tough to manage the packing, organizing, and administrative steps involved in Moving, given the unknowns of your new state. Fortunately, you can cut down on the confusion (not to mention the time, money, and hassle) if you knew what to expect ahead of time.
Keep this cross-state moving checklist handy while you’re in the process of relocating to your new world.
Figure out if you’re going the full-service or DIY route
Cost and convenience are the two major factors to consider when deciding how you’ll move.
For example, if you want to leave the heavy lifting and driving to someone else, you may want to Hire Professional Movers. Of course, this option will be more expensive. But if you want to go the in-between route, cost-wise, you can also hire movers to just load and unload the truck for you, and then drive yourself to your new location to save a lot of cash.
Also, keep in mind that moving container companies are another option to look into, especially if you will be in-between moves for a while. This means you’ll be in charge of packing and loading the container yourself, though you can hire professional movers to help you with the heavy stuff if you need to.
Research the best moving companies by distance traveled
Whether you’re hiring a moving company, driving your own truck, or going with a shipping container, the distance you’re moving will make a big difference in what options you have.
For example, some companies only do local moves, meaning a distance of 100 miles or less. If you’re moving within your state, but several hundred miles away (known as an “intrastate move”), you’ll need to budget for higher moving costs and find a company that specializes in longer distances. Moving across several states (known as an “interstate move”) will be the most expensive option and require a company that has a national presence.
Here are some of the best moving companies in 2021, based on the distance needed.
Budget for your move insanely early
The American Moving and Storage Association estimates that the average cost of an interstate household move is about $4,300, while the average cost of an intrastate move is about $2,300.
Whatever the costs are, make sure to set aside time to plan for all of them and save up the money you need so you don’t end up with a ton of credit card debt once it’s all said and done.
Moving far away?
Do it cheaper.
HireAHelper.com can save you up to 40%, compared to traditional interstate van lines.
Compare our long distance moving company options.
Ask your employer about relocation assistance
Are you moving out of state to take a new job? If so, your employer may offer financial assistance for relocating and help cover the cost of expenses such as moving company costs, storage, temporary housing, and more. It’s true, it can actually cost up to $100,000 to relocate one employee, but it’s an investment some companies are willing to make for the right talent.
To find out if this is a benefit your company offers, reach out to your Human Resources department.
Find out if your new place has any restrictions for pets or plants
You don’t want to run into any trouble getting your fur babies or precious plants to their new home. Some states, such as California and Hawaii, have strict rules around transporting plants and animals. Be sure to know what those restrictions are and prepare accordingly. You can start with your state’s website (look for a “.gov” website).
Consider the season you’re moving in
If you can help it, you don’t want to spend all day unloading your belongings at the height of summer in Arizona or hurricane season in Louisiana. Research the climate for your new home and plan the move when the weather should be mild. You can look up your destination on a site like Climate-Data.org, which contains a ton of data around the average monthly temperature, precipitation, and more for cities around the world.
If possible, visit the location at least once
If you’re moving to a new city or area you’re not familiar with, it’s a good idea to spend some time in the area and check it out before pulling the trigger on a move. You’ll want to see what the neighborhood is like, including what types of shops and restaurants are nearby, how the neighbors are, how walkable it is, etc. If there’s just no way you can make the trip before the actual move, at least look around using Google Maps.
Ask businesses or people for packing supplies
Make sure you have all the necessary supplies handy for properly packing your belongings, and keep extra on hand just in case. You don’t want to run out in search of boxes or tape while you’re in the middle of packing up. Always consider any specialized supplies you may need, such as wardrobe boxes, hangers, bubble wrap, box knives, permanent markers, and dollies.
To save money on these items, see if anyone has cheap or free moving boxes on sites such as Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, or Nextdoor.
Set aside 6-12 hours to pack, per room
Packing will take longer than you think. If you hire professional movers to pack up and load your belongings, you can probably expect it to get done in a day. A two-bedroom home, for example, requires about six to 12 hours, assuming a two-person crew.
If you’re doing your own packing, you will probably need much more time, though — think two to three days for the same two-bedroom. Unless you’re able to squeeze your packing over one weekend, you might need to plan ahead and get time off of work approved.
Figure out your new place’s move policies
Some apartment buildings and other planned communities have strict rules around moving. For example, you may not be allowed to block certain streets or driveways, or take up the elevators for too long. Be sure to know these policies ahead of time so you can plan around them. To find out, contact your building’s property manager or head of the homeowners association.
Get your utilities transferred
The last thing you want is to show up to your new place and have no water or electricity. Call up your utility companies to let them know you’re moving! If they happen to service your new destination, you can have the service transferred. Otherwise, you’ll need to close the account (be sure to get back any deposits you paid upfront) and open new ones for your new place.
To set up a new service, first, research the options available in your new city. Once you’ve selected the provider, it’s a good idea to get the ball rolling at least two weeks in advance of your move. You can usually create an account and set up service using the provider’s website (if not, call them directly). You’ll need to know the address where you want service set up, as well as the start date. Keep in mind that for some utilities, such as electricity, the service provider may need to run a soft credit check and/or require a deposit to approve your account.
The Most Trusted Moving Checklist on the Web
The Moving Checklist: Everything You Need to Know to Move
Cancel or transfer any memberships
Belong to a gym or club? Many require at least one months’ notice before you cancel your membership, so be sure to get this done well before you move. If the organization has a location in the city you’re moving to, you may be able to transfer the membership instead.
Have your child’s school records transferred, too
If you have kids, it’s important to notify their school of the move. Be sure that their school records, along with other important records such as health information and immunizations, get transferred over to the new school. You can bring photocopies of these documents when you register them at their new school. However, you will eventually need to supply official, sealed copies of their transcripts, which include report cards and standardized test results, in order to have their permanent records moved.
Look into transferring your professional license
If you work as a doctor, dentist, lawyer, or other licensed professional, you may need to transfer your license or apply for a new one if you’re moving to a different state. The process for transferring your license will depend on your state and profession. Some states have reciprocity agreements or other arrangements to help ease the process, but you should contact your state licensing board as soon as possible to ensure you have enough time.
Update your driver’s license or ID within two weeks
Most states require you to get a new license within two weeks of relocating. You’ll need to book an appointment with your local Department of Motor Vehicles and bring along some paperwork, including your current license, additional identification (such as your Social Security card or passport), proof of residence (such as a utility bill or W-2), and payment. Be sure to book an appointment in advance since slots tend to fill up quickly. You can find your local DMV office using this directory.
Update your vehicle registration and insurance
If you’re making an interstate move, you’ll need to register your car with your new state’s DMV as well. Each state offers a grace period to update your registration, typically between 30 to 90 days. Most states also require proof of insurance to register your car, so sign up for a new policy if you’re unable to remain with the same insurer (and don’t cancel your old one until you do) before registering.
Along with your new ID and proof of insurance, you’ll need proof of residency and your car’s title. Keep in mind that some states, including California and Georgia, charge a tax to register your vehicle that’s based on its market value. It’s especially important to plan for this added expense if you have a newer car or luxury vehicle.
Ship your car, if necessary
If you’re not driving your own vehicle to the new location, you’ll need to have it shipped. Some moving companies will ship your car along with your belongings, but you may be able to save some money by hiring a company that specializes in shipping cars. Your vehicle’s size and condition, the distance being shipped, and the type of carrier will all factor into the price.
One of the biggest decisions to make is whether to go with open or closed transport; it’s probably better to go with a closed container if you have a newer or luxury vehicle, though the cost can be as much as 60% higher. Be sure to get several quotes before choosing a car shipping company.
Contact your banks and lenders
Don’t miss any important payments – make sure that your bank, credit card company, student loan servicer, and any other financial institutions know that you’ve moved and have your new address. You may be able to do this by logging into your online banking platform, or by calling the number on your card or statement.
Have your mail forwarded
To make sure you don’t miss any important mail in the transition, have your mail forwarded by the USPS starting a few days before your move. Don’t forget to update your new mailing address with the DMV and on any subscriptions, too.
Register to vote
Don’t let your civic duty be forgotten in the move! If you move within the same state, you can find out how to update your voter registration here. Otherwise, check Vote.gov to find instructions for registering to vote in your new state.
Get a handle on taxes
Finally, one aspect of moving that you may not have considered, but can impact your finances quite a bit, is the state income tax. In addition to paying federal taxes, most states also charge taxes. Some have a flat tax, meaning everyone pays the same tax rate. Others have a progressive tax system, which means you pay a higher tax rate on higher amounts of income. And a handful don’t charge income tax at all.
Here’s the latest available breakdown of state tax rates as of 2020:
District of Columbia: 4%-8.95%
New Hampshire: 5%
New Jersey: 1.4%-10.75%
New Mexico: 1.7%-4.9%
New York: 4%-8.82%
North Carolina: 5.25%
North Dakota: 1.1%-2.9%
Rhode Island: 3.75%-5.99%
South Carolina: 0%-7%
Tennessee: 1% (dividends and interest income only)
West Virginia: 3%-6.5%
States with no income tax: Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wyoming.
Keep in mind that if you lived and worked in the same state all year, you only need to file one state return. However, if you moved to another state during the year (or otherwise lived in one state and earned income in another) you might need to file more than one return.
The post 21 Easy to Forget Steps When Moving to A New State appeared first on Moving Advice from HireAHelper.