Moving House Checklist – the ultimate moving tips

Moving house is one of the biggest tasks you can undertake in your life and careful planning is crucial. With so many things to consider, the use of a moving house checklist is highly recommended to ensure you have all bases covered.

We have assisted thousands of clients from the planning stage of a move, through to the actual event and settling in to their new residence. We hope our list below will help you organise your move in a strategic and comprehensive way and allow a stress-free transition to your new home.

If you are time poor or find the whole task of moving too overwhelming, please contact us to find out more about our complete moving assistance package. (link to relocation services page)

Checklist for moving house in Australia

By planning early, you can take the headache out of moving house, no matter where you are in Australia. Our checklist starts 1 month out from your moving date, however it’s never too early to plan. Especially since there are so many things to organise when moving house!


  • Prepare an inventory of everything you own, making note of any cracks or scratches on items.
  • Go through the garage, crawl space and under the house for any forgotten about items.
  • If you have precious or fragile items that require extra care when moving, create a separate list for these.
  • Determine and organise your most important documents and sentimental belongings that you should look to carry with you during the move.
  • Get rid of everything that you don’t need. This may include sale of items online or at public auction, donation to charity, and disposal of rubbish and recyclables.
  • Measure the spaces in your new home (including entrances) to ensure that bigger items will fit through doors, and in their allocated spaces.
  • Confirm with solicitor or agent of your settlement date and key collection time to ensure you choose a suitable date for the move.
  • Book your reputable removal company. Determine your budget, be advised on the size of truck needed based on your possessions and get a written quote for the costs.
  • Organise Home and Contents Insurance for your new home.
  • Redirect or cancel newspaper and other subscriptions.
  • Update your mailing address with all other companies you have relationships with. In case you miss any, consider setting up a temporary mail redirect to your new address.
  • Transfer and set up utilities at your new address.
  • Start using all opened packets of food in your pantry and throw out any that are past expiry.
  • Plan meals with items that are in your freezer.
  • Return any borrowed or rented items.
  • Organise short or long-term storage for any items if necessary.
  • Schedule a hard rubbish pick-up with your local Council.
  • Book a cleaner and organise a property inspection (if renting).
  • Empty any gas cylinders and dispose of any flammable liquids.

Packing Tips When Moving Home

Our Classic Moves department can assist with the entire process, including packing and unpacking. However, if you choose to do this yourself, here are some extra packing tips when moving home.

  • Determine what size boxes and other packing materials you need (this may include bubble wrap, sticky labels, markers, scissors, tape, rope, string, paper).
  • Arrange box and packing materials delivery – either through your removalist company or source these items yourself. Plastic tubs are very durable and can be purchased cheaply from Kmart or Target.
  • Second hand boxes are also a great way to save money and better for the environment.
  • Avoid using newspaper to wrap items as the print can soil them. White butchers paper is best.
  • Clearly label every box or tub, and on the sticker write the contents and the room it’s to go in.
  • Record a list of all items in each box and ensure they are stored securely and wrapped where appropriate.
  • Pack heavier items in small boxes and lighter items in large boxes. Heavier items should always go on bottom.

Put together a box called “Critical Items” and in this add your TV remotes, gadgets, cords, keys to cabinets and anything else that doesn’t have a fixed spot. It can be very frustrating looking for these types of items once you’ve moved, but if they all go in the critical box you will save plenty of headaches!

Sticking with the headache reduction strategies, putting together another box called “Immediate Items” is another must. Fill this with bathroom products, medication, tea and coffee, the kettle, breakfast needs, tissues, paper plates, bottle opener, kid’s toys, pet accessories, snacks, scissors and toilet paper.

Plus, anything else that you simply MUST be able to access on the day of (or after) the move. Get the removalists to load this last as you want to get it off the truck first. These moving house packing tips should make things a lot easier!


  • Notify Electoral Office of your new address. Also look into updating your driver’s licence and car registration through VIC roads. Get your car serviced.
  • Arrange final readings of gas and electricity meters. Call other utilities providers to transfer your services to the new address.
  • Organise time off work for moving day (if it’s normally a day you’d work on).
  • Book a locksmith to change your keys for the new home on the day of the move.
  • Speak with your internet provider to transfer your connection from the old home to the new home.
  • Arrange move of boat or trailer if you have one, as this won’t be carried out by your removalist.
  • Get any prescriptions filled for the week prior to and the week after the move.
  • Collect any items that have been sent for repair, and pickup any dry cleaning.
  • Disassemble any items in your garden, such as swing, portable clothesline, shed, children’s equipment.
  • Arranged for the existing house to be cleaned, so it’s in optimal condition prior to settlement/inspection.
  • Put together a DIY Kit to use at both ends of the move. It should include a screwdriver, Allen keys, Stanley knife, hooks, tape, nails and hammer.


  • Make a list of each room in the new house and plan the placement of furniture to advise removalists.
  • Organise for children and pets to be looked after on moving day.
  • Backup your computer onto an external drive.
  • Move all indoor plants into plastic lined boxes and give them a light water.
  • Put aside clean sheets, pillow cases and towels to be used on the night of the move.
  • Contact any service providers such as cleaner, gardener, babysitter that you’re moving. If moving a long distance, source new service providers.
  • Contact moving company to re-confirm details of the assignment and ensure they have your contact information.


  • Pack an overnight bag with the items you will carry with you.
  • Unplug and tie up cords for your appliances. (if not attached to the appliance, look to put these in your “Critical Items” box.
  • Empty out your fridge and defrost the freezer. Give it a good clean and leave doors open. Organise esky and ice to transport perishables.
  • Go to the bank to get cash for last minute expenses.
  • Say bye to your existing neighbours. The ones you like, at least!
  • Be sure to leave out essential items for that evening and the next morning.
  • Get a good night’s sleep!


  • Make sure your Critical Items and Immediate Items boxes are both handy.
  • Set aside all other items you don’t want packed onto the removalist truck.
  • Give the removalist company your room list with furniture plan.
  • Instruct them to load the kitchen boxes last so they come out first at the new home.
  • Tick off all items/boxes as they are loaded into the moving truck.
  • Do a thorough scan of all rooms, cupboards and outdoor areas for overlooked items.
  • Turn off the power, lock all doors and windows.
  • Return all sets of keys to the existing agent.


  • Look over the house to ensure all rooms and features are in the appropriate condition.
  • Make sure that all utilities are connected, and the hot water is switched on.
  • Reserve a suitable spot for the removalist to park.
  • Check that all items are unloaded and placed in the appropriate rooms.
  • Make sure you have all necessary keys and inspect all locks to ensure they are working.
  • Put together beds and make them as soon as possible.
  • Give children and pets any special toys to make them feel at home.
  • Break open the champagne and celebrate your new domain!

Final Moving House Tips and Tricks

By following the above checklist for moving house you should ensure everything runs incredibly smoothly. To really top things off, here are some extra tips and tricks for your move.

Colour code your boxes – Use different coloured paper to label boxes for specific rooms ie. kitchen blue, family room pink, master bedroom green, bathroom yellow, and so on.

Use pillows in packing – Pillows are a great way to ensure breakable items have an extra layer of padding. Cushions and kids plush toys will have the same benefit.

Secure your screws – If you’ve removed screws from furniture or other items, having them all in the one place will make things a lot easier when you’re looking for them. A zip lock bag is a great idea for these.

Use a suitcase for heavy items – A suitcase isn’t just something to be moved, it can also help with the moving. Filling them with books or other heavy items makes them easier to transport since you can roll them instead of lifting.

Don’t do a big grocery shop in the lead up – Keeping the grocery shopping to a minimum in the week leading up to the move can make things easier and saves you from throwing things out. Plan meals that will maximise existing food usage, and even consider ordering a grocery home delivery to arrive at your new house on the evening of the move.

Document your cables – Unplugging cables is always easy, but remembering which ports they go into can be a lot harder when you’re re-setting things up. Take photos of all cables before you unplug them so you know exactly where they go.

For more information on our fully managed removal services, contact Abbeys on 03 9898 2118.

Posted in Selling.