Your Military Moving Checklist
When your military career requires relocation, it can be a difficult transition for you and your family. One way to minimize the stress of military moving is with a comprehensive checklist to keep you organized and on-task. From the home decor experts at Fashion Furniture Rental, we’ve rounded up the best military experts to create a checklist that considers every step in the relocation process:
Three months before military moving
- Get rid of stuff you don’t need, which starts with emptying out your closets and drawers and deciding whether or not to keep your possessions. Since you need to go through all of your stuff, this process of minimizing your life can be time-consuming, which is why we recommend doing this at least three months before your military move. Also, it gives you a chance to take inventory of all the things you want to keep; that way you’ll have a better idea of how many boxes you need to ship to your new address as well as the best size moving van for your needs.
- Consider the benefits of furniture rental for your new home. According to Elizabeth Bennett Colegrove of the Reluctant Landlord blog, renting instead of buying furniture has many money-saving benefits: “The thing that most people don’t realize is, storing your stuff is expensive and adds up quickly.” But when you rent furniture, she explains, you won’t have the extra expense of renting a storage unit. At Fashion Furniture Rental, we handle the packaging, delivery, and set up for your furniture and accessories, which means that you won’t have to deal with multiple days of packing and moving. Colegrove also points out that furniture rental is much easier than starting from scratch: “Buying furniture is expensive, even if you go used, because there’s also always going to be a few new items you need to buy.” At Fashion Furniture, we have everything you need to make your new house or apartment look and feel like a place to call home, including the complete home package, which gives you the option to add on other household essentials like kitchenware, linens, electronics, and much more. We also know how stressful a temporary relocation can be for military families, which is why we offer a 5% military discount on the entire lease term as a way to show our appreciation for the sacrifice and dedication of U.S. service members.
- Familiarize yourself with your new neighborhood with Military Town Advisor, a website that features reviews from fellow military families. As Military Spouse explains, “Learn about places to avoid, good areas, schools, restaurants, etc. This information is published for your use as you move to the area. Just be sure to contribute if you have your own reviews to help out the next military family!”
- Set a budget and start saving. When it comes to a military move, there are some non-reimbursable costs that you need to consider. Along with deciding on a budget, the Military.com blog also suggests tracking your tax-deductible moving expenses such as pre-moving costs and house hunting.
- Decide if you’re going to lease or sell your home. Depending on the real estate market, each choice has its possible benefits. Schedule an appointment with a realtor to discuss your options.
- Look for a new home. Military Spouse recommends online house-hunting at Military by Owner, which features a database of homes to buy or rent near your military base. Simply enter your search criteria and browse the listings to find the perfect home to suit your needs. If you decide to live on base, Military Spouse advises contacting the local housing office as soon as possible: “Base housing is often limited and accompanied with a waitlist. Get your name in early to increase your chances of base living.” The local housing office can also offer tips on where to live, including a list of properties and areas that should be avoided. The website MyMove.com also offers tips on how to make your military move as smooth as possible.
1 month before your military move
- Schedule pick up and delivery dates with your mover and other services such as furniture rental. Also, take this time to arrange for a storage unit if needed. One month before your military move also gives you enough time to verify your move-in schedule with real estate agents and landlords.
- Forward your mail and don’t order any new shipments unless it is for your new home. Also, complete an IRS change of address form, which is available on their website.
- Return any borrowed items like library books.
- Make sure that your vehicles are in good condition and up-to-date on any regular maintenance.
1 week before your military move
- Separate professional items like books, papers, and equipment, which are considered military weight allowances that will be weighed and listed separately from your shipping inventory. Let the packers know which boxes are professional items that won’t be counted into your weight allowance.
- Place small items like silverware and furniture components into labeled Ziploc bags, which will help keep small, miscellaneous items organized and accounted for.
- Start removing wall accessories such as food and utensil racks, small appliances, and window curtain rods.
A few days before your military move
- Separate the items you will be packing and what you need on a day-to-day basis. Military.com recommends keeping a household inventory list on hand and caring it with you.
- Label your boxes so that the movers will know where it needs to go.
- Clean out your refrigerator and freezer and let them dry for 1 to 2 days with the doors propped open.
- Switch utility services to your new address.
- Drain water from waterbeds, pools, and hot tubs.
After your military move
- If you are moving to a new state, schedule a time to get a new driver’s license and car registration as soon as possible.
- Reach out to medical services such as dentists, doctors, counselors, etc. and schedule appointments for you and your family members.
- When your movers arrive, check your inventory list to make sure it matches up with all the packages. Also, if you’re renting furniture, make sure that everything in your order is included in the delivery and arrives in good condition.
- Have an idea of the furniture layout for your new home. This will help the movers with large pieces of furniture such as couches, dining tables, and mattresses. At Fashion Furniture Rental, our furniture packages are already professionally designed and arranged, which makes your military move even more convenient for everyone involved.
At Fashion Furniture Rental, we know how hard it can be to navigate through life’s transitions, which is why our moving checklist includes everything you need to make your military move go as smoothly as possible. Feel free to add more items to the checklist for a customized military move that meets your specific needs.