How to Prepare for a Move: The Ultimate Moving Checklist

You followed all of the tips for apartment hunting and found the perfect San Diego apartment. It wasn’t an easy task, but you’re ready to make the leap to move into your dream place. Your work isn’t done once you sign that lease, though. You still need to move into that apartment. Moving can be a lot less stressful, though, if you keep things organized, and a moving checklist can do just that.

This moving checklist, complete with a moving timeline, assumes you have about eight weeks before your move.

If you’re moving within August through October, any additional time you have will work in your favor. This is the most popular time to move to San Diego, so it’s best to start planning as soon as you know your move-in date.


8 Weeks Before the Move

  • Create a moving budget. Everything you do from this point forward, from the movers you book to what you’ll be filling your space with, depends on your budget.
  • Plan your move-out. Contact your landlord, and schedule final walkthroughs to get that security deposit back.
  • Schedule your movers. Don’t delay this one, especially if you’re moving during those peak San Diego summer months. Movers book up fast, and you don’t want to be left with the odd times. If the timing isn’t right for you and your movers, you may need to book a storage unit.
  • Arrange a move-in time. If you’re moving to downtown San Diego, you’ll need to let your new landlords know when you’ll be moving in, so that you have dedicated use of their moving elevators, parking permissions, and access to the unit that day.
  • Downsize (if you need to). Go through all of your old things, and decide what sparks joy for you. If you’re moving into a smaller space than your current one, you have some work to do.
  • Disconnect and connect. Schedule times for your utility companies to both disconnect services at your current place, and install services at your new home. This will ensure that you’ll minimize wait times after you move in.
  • Get to know your new neighborhood. Spend some time on a more fun kind of planning. Research the area, and more on San Diego itself if you’re moving from out of town. Check out a guide to moving to San Diego to familiarize yourself with additional things you may need to know about America’s Finest City.

what to do 8 weeks before your move date


6 Weeks Before the Move

  • Contact your friends and family for help. If you’re looking to save money on movers or know you’ll need a few extra hands-on moving day, ask your friends if they’d be willing to help you out.
  • Research renters insurance. Before you move in, and certainly before you have any claims, you’ll want to decide on renters insurance. Some apartments require it, so make sure you’ve read through your lease carefully before move-in day.
  • Gather moving materials. You’ll likely need to add to the pile of boxes you’ll get at this time, but get a head start now. Pick up packing tape, bubble wrap, and markers to label your boxes.
  • Plot your route. If you’re moving from out of town, arrange for any overnights and stops along the way.
  • Map out your new place. Ideally, you’ll have made some measurements of your new apartment, so you know what you can and cannot bring. Otherwise, most apartments can provide square footage and room measurements for you, so you know whether that couch is too big.

What to do 6 weeks before your move date


4 Weeks Before the Move

  • Donate things you don’t need. Remember all of those things you decided you didn’t need? Find a new home for them, whether that’s the local library for old books or a donation center for clothing and furniture.
  • Change your address. Contact the post office for a change of address. Update your address with any subscription services, banks, billing entities, directly.
  • Request time off. Let your employer know you’ll need a day off if you’re moving on a workday.
  • Cancel services and memberships. Cancel any gym memberships, lawn care services, or other amenities you won’t use at your new place.
  • Plan beyond your first day. Decide whether you’d like to do some painting before unpacking big items. Shop for items you’ll need the week of your move – think shower curtains, for example – and watch sales for things that aren’t essential, but on your to-do list.


what to do 4 weeks before the move date


2 Weeks Before the Move

  • Start packing. Make sure to label your boxes based on the rooms they’ll be placed in. You don’t need to label all of the contents for safety purposes but can certainly keep a list of what’s in each box that only you have access to.
  • Run errands. Fill any prescriptions you may need over the next few weeks, have some cash on hand for the movers, pick up your dry cleaning, and clear out any additional storage.


What to do 2 weeks before the move date


1 Week Before the Move

  • Confirm dates and times. Check-in with your movers and your new apartment. Provide your movers with any special instructions on finding your old place.
  • Keep packing! Don’t hit pause on boxing things up that you don’t need in this last week. Pack a bag of essentials that will get you through to moving day.
  • Check your tech. Back up any laptops and desktop computers if they’re getting packed up.


How to prepare 1 week before your move date


Days Before Moving Day

  • Finish packing. Set aside what you’ll need or want to move, like any valuables and important documents, family mementos, or things the movers cannot bring for you. Label boxes you’ll need to open up first at your new place with first-day essentials.
  • Have a potluck. Clear out your fridge, and plan for some takeout right before the big day. If the fridge is coming with you, you’ll need to unplug it a few days before your move.
  • Tidy up. You want that security deposit to help you dress up the new place, so make sure you leave your old home nice and clean, with any minor repairs complete.


How to prepare days before your move


It’s Moving Day!

  • Do a walkthrough. Before you turn in those keys to your old place, check every room, then recheck it, to make sure you aren’t leaving anything behind.
  • Supervise the movers. Your movers will need some guidance on what goes where at your new place. At the end of their service, you’ll want to make sure to pay and tip them and look over their inventory sheet. Keep a copy of that for your records. If you notice any damage after the fact, take photos to send to the movers.
  • Say goodbye! Moving can be bittersweet, but just think of the excitement you’ll feel at that new place!

What to do on moving day!

If you’re still in the apartment hunting stage, it doesn’t get much better than Allegro Tower. Contact us to tour the units, and plan a move to your dream place. And for a little extra help before your big move, checkout our moving checklist below.

Moving Checklist

Moving checklist