Moving long distance can be overwhelming at first. With the number of tasks that pile up on top of taking the time to actually transport your belongings, creating a solid outline a few months before your moving day can help make sure that nothing gets forgotten in the chaos.

2-3 MONTHS BEFORE THE BIG MOVE

-inventory everything in your home. Remember that old TLC show, Clean Sweep? Pull a play out of their book and sort your items into three categories: Keep, donate, sell. Keep in mind that the less stuff you have to move, the easier the move will be, and cheaper too.

-Create a floorplan for your new home. This will help you decide if the furniture you have is the right size or if you should include it in your “sell” inventory.

-Collect all of your important family or legal documents into one place. This includes passports, birth certificates, insurance cards, etc. It’s a good idea to create a photocopy of your most important documents to keep in a separate place.

-Begin the enrollment process for your children into school. It might take you some time to look up different schools nearby or decide where you want your kids to attend. If you start the enrollment process before the move, your only focus once you have made the move is unpacking.

-Find storage. If you’re moving into a smaller space or think that you may move back, storage might be an option for you.

-Organize all of the last renovations that need to be done before you can move in, whether this is painting, carpentry, heating, etc. You will be more comfortable moving into a home when these are already complete.

-Book your travel plans. If you need to fly, make sure that you have your flights booked ahead of time and that they work with the mover’s schedule.

30 DAYS BEFORE THE BIG MOVE

-update your address everywhere you can think of and file a mail forwarding request with the post office.

-Order homeowners insurance for your new home. This will make you feel comfortable the first few days you’ve moved in knowing that you and your belongings are safe.

-Start packing all items that aren’t necessary for the next month. This includes items such as holiday decorations, books, basement contents, etc.

2-3 WEEKS BEFORE THE BIG MOVE

-Organize all medical needs. Notify your doctor, dentist, or other care providers of the move and plan accordingly. This is a good time to gather your medical records and send them to your new physicians. Another tip: if you have regular prescriptions, make sure that you have enough for the duration of your move and maybe a few weeks extra for while you’re settling in and organizing a new provider.

-Arrange to have a locksmith change the locks to your new home.

-Continue packing. Keep the items that you can’t live without but it’ll make your life easier to live more simplistic for a couple weeks then it will to pack everything last minute.

1 WEEK TO GO

-Pack yourself a survival bag for your move. If you’re traveling by plane or car, depending on your needs it might be a good idea to make sure you have your medications and important documents all in one place.

-If you’re going to be taking a road trip, this is a good time to get your car looked at and make sure your tires, oil, etc are all working and good to go long distance.

THE NIGHT BEFORE THE BIG MOVE

-This is the time to disassemble large furniture or beds to make them easier to pack the next day.

-Unplug all of your appliances. This includes defrosting your freezer and fridge.

-Pack your essentials that you will need for “day one” of your move into a bag so that you have easy access to it.

TODAY’S THE DAY!

-double, and triple check that you haven’t forgotten any items hidden away in an attic or a closet.

-Hand over the keys to your real estate agent or landlord and tie up any loose strings.