Okay, you’re moving out of state. Maybe you got promoted and relocated by your company to another state. Or maybe it was just time to move to a new place. Whatever your reason is for moving, congratulations!

If it’s your first time to move from one state to another, then you should know that this will be one of the most exhausting things that you’ll do in your entire life. But you can reduce the stress of moving when you’ve planned out the process from start to finish! And here’s the ultimate checklist for that!

Note that for the checklist, we’re going to divide it into three sections: BEFORE, DURING, and AFTER.

Before Moving

Create a budget

Your move needs to have a budget since this can put some serious strain on your finances. You’re going to want to prepare enough cash to make your move as smooth and as convenient as possible. If you’re moving to a new apartment, set aside funds for the security deposits and advance payments on top of the moving expenses. You’ll also want to set aside at least a month’s worth of utility bills (electricity, gas, water, Internet) just to be on the safe side.

Get to know your new state and city

If the new state you’re moving to is just a few hours away, make it a point to get to know your state by planning a road trip or doing your research online. Doing this will give you a feel of your new environment and give you a rough idea on certain differences and nuances between your old and new state.

Research schools

If you have children, make researching for schools a high priority. If you plan to send them to public school, find out which neighborhoods are close proximity to one and their reputation.

Research key locations

Key locations such as grocery stores, hospitals, vet clinics, and malls are important in your research as well. Ideally, you want these locations to be as accessible as possible, maybe as little as 10 to 15 minutes away if you have your own car. If you’re just commuting in your new state, you want to identify local transportation services and where they’re located.

Schedule utility transfers

You have to make sure that your utility companies know that you’re moving to a new state, and make sure that you’re in touch with the new utility companies in the state that you’re moving into. If you already have an address at your new state, set aside time to schedule installation and transfer of electricity, Internet, and gas.

Find moving companies

Last but not least, find moving companies that you want to work with. This also should be considered when you’re creating your budget. The best thing to do here is to get quotes from at least 3 moving companies and go for the one that can give you the best service for the lowest price possible.

With that said, don’t be afraid to go for premium payment as well if they’re known to provide the best service possible.

During The Move

Pack your stuff

Schedule a time for packing up the stuff that you need to bring to the new state. Pack all non-essentials first, such as books, home decors and electronics at least a couple of weeks before the move, and then the essentials such as kitchen items, toiletries, and dinnerware should be packed a week before. To make packing easier, sort out what you need to bring and what you need to liquidate or donate. You should always think about what you need to bring along before moving to a new home.

Secure your furniture

Coordinate with your moving company on how they’ll go about securing your furniture. Make sure that every corner is taped and every surface is protected so it doesn’t get damaged in transit. Remember, the moving truck can only do so much in making sure that the contents don’t move as much.

Tell people you’re moving

Let important people know that you’re moving, including the time and date and your new address. No need to tell them in-person. A short email or text message will do. This is more of a security reason than anything else, so in case something goes wrong, you’ll have people who’re aware of your plans to move.

After The Move

Build shed storage

If you brought in more things than your new space could handle, build shed storage in your backyard or rent a storage unit in your new state. Shed storage can help you store these items for the meantime as you determine how you’re going to keep or dispose of them. You can also use the garage as makeshift shed storage. If you have an apartment, dedicate a room for storing these items for the meantime in lieu of building shed storage.

Establish domicile

If the state becomes your new permanent address (meaning you don’t have any plans to move any time soon), you’ll need to establish legal domicile in the new state for tax purposes. There are various ways to establish domicile in your new state, so please check out the state’s website.

Get a new driver’s license

If you own a car, make sure you get a new driver’s license from the new state’s DMV. Check state requirements since some states require new residents to obtain a driver’s license within a specific time frame. You’ll also want to secure your other ID’s just to be sure.

Secure a pet license

Are you bringing pets with you? You may need to register your pets with the city or county. The requirements vary from state to state, but most of the time, they’ll require you to get a license within a month after moving. This is mostly done to make sure that your pets get the necessary shots for public safety and health reasons.