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The complete cross country moving checklist

So, you're planning the good ol' cross-country relocation? Since you're reading these words, there's a fair chance that you are. Whatever the case - we're sure you'll be able to use some of the info we're going to show you in the text below. Is there an article on moving that doesn't mention that the whole ordeal is kinda stressful? This one won't be an exception. Also, kinda stressful might not be the best words ever used to describe the difficulties of a cross-country relocation. Instead of prolonging this into a lengthy diatribe about issues with moving, we'll cut right to the chase. Scroll down to find the complete cross-country moving checklist.

Two months before the moving date
Let's say you've picked out an ideal neighborhood for your family. It's time to start the preparation process. As we all know, the key to success lies in good organization. The sooner you begin preparing, the better. Let's say two months before the moving day is pretty alright. Here are some of the things you can do two months prior to the move.

Decide whether you're hiring pros or going DIY
The first thing on the complete cross-country moving checklist is about the type of relocation. Going DIY when doing a cross-country relocation sounds a bit risky, as if someone dared you to do it. As you can undoubtedly guess, hiring professionals is a recommendation here. For example, if you're moving to or from Idaho, you might first want to explore your options. Home to one of the best moving service providers our country offers, Idaho is a top-rated destination for newcomers. But that's a story for another article.

A team of movers standing in front of their truck

First things first, you need to decide whether or not you'll hire professionals to help you relocate. Going DIY might be a risky move, especially if you consider the distance.

Create a moving budget
Put everything down on paper. Make an approximation of how much the whole ordeal will cost you. The decision we mentioned above will shape your moving budget. Also, while the pen's still in your hand, you can create an inventory of all the stuff you're taking with you. Start slowly, as you'll eventually have to think about what stays and what goes. More on that below.

Obtain packing materials
You'll need a lot of packing materials like bubble wrap, cardboard boxes, packing tape, etc. If you're not hiring anyone to pack your things, that is. A neat little tip: you can gather free boxes from your local grocery/department stores.

Some other actions
You can also do a virtual tour of your new neighborhood, and if you have kids, check out where the nearest schools are. If you're moving the DIY way, check your car/truck for any technical issues. Also, if you're renting an apartment or a house, make sure you've notified the landlord.

Six weeks before the moving day

Time to downsize?
As we've mentioned above, you'll need to decide whether something goes or stays. Moving is the right time for decluttering/downsizing. Bulky pieces of furniture can sometimes be a burden, both physical and financial. That being said, it might be best if you donate or sell some of them.

Slowly start packing
If you're not hiring pros to help you out with this, it might be time to start packing items you don't use every day. Everything that you use on an everyday basis can wait.

A dog in a cardboard box

Slowly start packing six weeks before the moving day. Firstly, pack stuff you don't use on an everyday basis.

One month before the move

Throw one last party in the old neighborhood
Since the moving day is approaching fast, as you will surely notice, it might be time to throw a farewell party. If you're renting an apartment, you'll have an excellent reason to deep-clean your place after the party's over. This way, you'll say goodbye to your old neighborhood in the best manner possible.

Change the address (car insurance), handle personal documents
This will give you enough time to transfer your plates and obtain a new registration. Also, you can store all your personal documents (birth certificates, insurance forms, etc.) in one folder so that you won't have to worry if you've left something behind. If you have pets, include their documents too.

A family unpacking in their new home

Make sure you form an essentials box containing all the stuff you're going to need during your first night at the new place.

Withdraw some cash for tips
If you're moving DIY, this tip doesn't concern you. We don't need to elaborate more on this one, do we?

Defrost your freezer and other tips
One week before the move, find some time to defrost your freezer. Clean the whole refrigerator, as well. Actually, it might be best to clean all your kitchen items before you hit the road.

The night before
You're nearly there! Make sure to get some good night's sleep!

Moving day, finally
Here's what you'll need to do when the day you've been waiting for arrives.

Clear the pathway and protect the floors
Make sure the path between the moving truck and your home is empty. That way, you'll ease the job for yourself or your movers. Also, protect the floors of your old home while moving the furniture. 

First aid kit, water for the road, and that's it
Make sure you keep a first aid kit in the car. If you're moving with kids or pets, make sure you have everything ready for them so that they don't get hungry or thirsty. Pack a lot of water for the road.

Final words
There you have it, folks. This was the complete cross-country moving checklist. By following everything we've mentioned above, you're bound to have a successful, stress-free relocation. We're absolutely sure of it!