Are You Ready for that Move? Tie Up Your Financial Loose Ends

During the first six years of my marriage, I moved six times. We pretty much moved each year — and that included two cross-country moves.

However, we’ve been fairly settled in our current home for the last six years. I’m a little out of practice with the moving thing, and it’s a possibility that my family will move again in the next 18 months or so. As I consider the possibility of packing everything up and moving again, I also have to think about what loose ends are going to need to be tied up.

When you’ve had your roots down for a while, it’s surprising the things you have to do to prepare to move. I’m already making my checklist, just in case I end up needing it fairly soon.

Getting Financially Ready for Your Move

After you find a moving company you can trust to get your belongings to your new home, the next thing you need to do is make sure that you have your addressed changed. The Post Office has a form you can fill out in person or online (it’ll cost $1 to do it online). Your mail will be forwarded to your new address for up to a year..

But don’t just change your address with the USPS. You’ll also need to update all of your accounts from subscriptions to bank accounts to credit card accounts to insurance policies. Just about any account you have will need to be updated to reflect your new address. Make a list of your accounts, and make sure you get your address changed properly.

If you will have to switch banks when you make your move, make sure to list out all of your automatic transactions so that you can move them to your new bank. The good news is that with online banking so accessible, you might not have to switch banks at all. My combination of a national bank as well as having many of my bills automatically paid with credit card, is a great help to me, and will probably ease the process of moving (if it happens).

When you have a family, you need to make sure that your financial ducks are in a row. Call ahead to find out what you need to do about getting health insurance coverage in your new state, as well as registering your car and getting an appropriate driver’s license. You might also need to transfer medical records to your new health care provider so that he or she is up to speed on your situation.

Don’t forget to cancel your utilities, and be clear about where the final bill should be sent. I once had a few dollars result in a collection agency issue because the power company didn’t have the correct address, and I never received the news that I still owed about $30. That can put a damper on your credit score. Make sure to keep track of your final notices, and check them off as you go along.

If you are moving a long distance away, you should clear out any storage spaces. This includes storage units and safe deposit boxes at the bank. It even makes sense to sell or give away a lot of your stuff so you don’t have to hassle with taking it with you.

In the end, the effort you put in now can make a big difference in the way your move goes later.

What are your best moving tips?

Image: Catherine

About the Author

Miranda writes about financial topics for several web sites. Her blog is Planting Money Seeds, and her book, Confessions of a Professional Blogger, is available on Amazon.