Cross Country Moving 101: 6 Steps to Have a Stress-Free Move



The mere thought of moving cross-country can be overwhelming because of the numerous things to do. Regardless of the reasons for moving, you have compromises to make, but you don’t have to panic. It’s just another phase in life that you’ll get through in the end. There are ways to prevent stress from taking over your move.

Moving cross-country involves more planning than moving to new place a couple of miles away since you can’t move things to and from homes thousands of miles apart. To help you transition into your new home with less stress, here are some tips to keep you grounded while taking your life across the country.

1. Plan at least two months ahead of the actual move

Consider first how you are going to move your things from your present location to the new one. You will have to figure out the best choices for moving out of your current location, transporting possessions and moving it to the new house. To do that, obtain quotes eight weeks ahead from various companies to know what’s feasible.

It may be surprising to know that movers are a cheaper option than doing it yourself. Be sure to evaluate professional moving services prior to making your final decision.

2. Research about the new place

Whatever is the reason for moving, you want to know about the new location as much as you can. Consider the following aspects when researching:

  • Neighbourhood. Check the new location by knowing its local culture, nearest hospital, dining places and other services.
  • Crime Rate. Know about the crime statistics of the place you are moving. There are various sources online to do this. You can also tap local police departments to provide crime reports on a certain location upon request.
  • Real Estate Markets. Before renting or buying a new house in your new location, ensure that you have sufficient background on its local real estate market. Check out various online resources for virtual tours, real estate listings and other resources.
  • Schools. This is especially important if you have children. Learn about the nearest schools to your place and their requirements for new students. There are also various online sources to provide your information about schools in specific locations.

3. Pack things early

Prepare for your move by packing your things early. However, don’t start packing your belongings without creating a strategy. An efficient way to pack your things is to do it by room. Put labels on the boxes according to the room where they belong. When you unload the boxes into your new home, you’ll immediately know where to place the boxes – “living”, “kitchen”, or “bedroom”.

4. Protect valuables and insure your things

The last thing you need when moving is the worry that you can’t find your important documents or wedding ring! Store your valuable items in a well-guarded place such as your purse, belt bag or in a safe deposit box. If you plan to hire movers, consider asking about liability when you pack your things yourself.

In most cases, movers would not be liable if anything gets damaged because they cannot guarantee that the items were packed properly. To ensure coverage of your items in case something expensive breaks, have the movers pack them and considering full insurance coverage. Sometimes, there are third-party insurance providers you can avail as well.

5. Obtain permits

You might need a permit to reserve a parking space for your shipping container or moving truck.  Check what your new location requires to obtain the permit. Schedule your delivery date a day or so after your arrival to ensure you have the permit ready. Whether your belongings are in their own container or part of a bigger moving truck, ensure that you are present when the shipment arrives. This is just appropriate since your presence will be required to sign off on the job.

If you cannot be there due to some reasons, have a family member, spouse or trusted friend to take your place. However, they will most likely need a power of attorney. This is to make sure that the person present is authorized to sign the shipment on your behalf.

6. Find new referrals

With other more important things in mind, you probably are not planning the next doctor’s appointment.

  • It would be useful to obtain records from your dentist or doctor and research new referrals in your new place
  • You will also need to establish a mail forwarding and change of address with the postal service
  • Update your address for magazine subscriptions, credit card companies and other regular mails
  • Contact your insurance provider for home, car, health care or renters’ insurance and update policies if needed to guarantee consistent coverage
  • Schedule the shut off of internet, gas, electric and other utilities
  • Cancel or transfer any memberships you have such as in your gym or coffee shop

Final Thoughts

Moving to a new location is challenging, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. The idea is to start planning your move early, stay positive and remain flexible for any changes. Take control of your move and learn to let go of the stress. Exciting and new opportunities await you in your new place.