When you are moving out of a property, whether as an owner-occupier or a tenant, there are a number of important steps you must take to ensure the process goes smoothly and is without problems or issues after the move.
The main move-out steps to bear in mind are listed below.
If you are an investor, some of the steps will be relevant to you and could save you time and money or minimise difficulties at a later date. It is good practice to check, as far as possible, that your tenant has complied with those steps which may impact on you.
Also see: moving in checklist
1. Stop your liabilities
You will want to make sure that you put an end to all liabilities related to your occupation of the property you are leaving.
In that regard you should:
- Inform the council tax authority of your move out date, claiming any refund due
- Stop any direct debit or standing order for payment of rent or mortgage
- Send meter readings to the suppliers of gas, electricity and water and inform them of your move out date and new address for your final bills
- Stop direct debits and standing orders for payment of utility bills and any service you receive in relation to the property such as: insurance, phone, broadband, TV bundle and TV licence
- If you are a leaseholder, stop any payment for ground rent or service charges.
In addition, arrange for your post to be re-directed to your new address.
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2. Let people know you have moved
You want to make sure that you inform everyone who needs to know of your move. That list will include:
- Doctor, dentist and optician
- Gas, electricity, water, phone, insurance and all other service providers
- Council tax authority
- Electoral Registration Office
- Credit card companies
- Building Societies
- Savings providers
- TV licensing authority
- Tax office
- Any other official body
- Family, friends and business contacts.
If you are in receipt of benefits, inform the relevant benefit organisation.
Arrange for the transfer of any service to be transferred to your new address, for instance:
- TV licence
- TV package
- Landline phone number.
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3. Practical considerations
- Prepare a “survival kit” of things you will need on arrival at your new residence – things such as keys, alarm code, phone, charger, phone numbers, toothbrush, tea/coffee, mini toolkit and the like
- Prepare a complete inventory of all your possessions being moved including the numbered storage box or container in which each item can be found
- Obtain at least two removal quotes if you intend to use a removal company; confirm the exact moving date when you know it
- Check that you are adequately insured to cover damage or breakages during the move
- If you have children, identify and check-out suitable schools; transfer school records and order new uniforms
- If you are buying the property you are about to move into, it is usual practice to arrange for the property to be insured on exchange of contracts; check the insurance requirements both for building and contents insurance with your conveyancer before contracts are exchanged
- If you are a tenant, make arrangements for the property to be professionally cleaned if that is a condition of your tenancy
- Make arrangements to store, skip, bin or give away any property or possessions you will not be taking with you.
4. On the day of the move
- Closely monitor the removal process, checking your inventory before signing the confirmation that everything has been accounted for
- Tick off your possessions as they are delivered using your inventory, checking for any damage or breakage.
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5. Tenant check-out
If you are a tenant, you may be subject to a formal move out procedure. It is good practice to conduct your own checkout in advance so that you can identify and address any possible issues.
Things you are likely to have to deal with include:
- Checking the current state and condition of the property against the inventory prepared when you moved in
- Checking whether there has been any damage to the property which has to be remedied
- Checking whether there has been any damage to furniture, fixtures or fittings
- Checking whether the property is clean to the standard required in the tenancy agreement
- Recording final meter readings for gas, electricity and water. It is good practice to take photographs of the readings and meter numbers.
Do you think there is anything important that has been missed? Other readers may benefit from your information. Please leave your comments below.
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Rebel Property Coach
My website is: www.rebelpropertycoach.com