10 things to do when moving house BEFORE moving day

10 things to do when moving house BEFORE moving day

Whether you’re upsizing, downsizing, sea or tree-changing, it can feel like there are a million things to do when moving house. The good news is that your stress levels, expense, and mess can be reduced by preparation and organisation before moving day.

When you’ve done the up-front planning, you can feel confident that you’ll rest easy on the first night in your new home. If you’ve ignored one or more realities of moving house, you may find yourself in a more expensive, stressful, or tiring situation than you’d like.

Smart Move is proud of its track record of minimising the hassle and cost of home and office removals. Here are top recommendations from our professional moving crews on 10 key things to do when moving house.

Things to do when moving house BEFORE you pick up your new keys

#1. Book a removalist

SmartMove Storage

The first item on your list of things to do when moving house is to book a removalist. The right removalist can make all the difference to the cost of your move and your happiness on moving day. Get a quote and line up your removalist as early as possible — the best removalists are engaged well in advance of a move. If you leave removalist hire to the last minute, you risk missing out altogether or paying premium prices.

#2. Decide how to pack

One of the biggest things to do when moving house that make a removal slow and expensive is lack of packing readiness. Decide well in advance of moving day if you’re going to self-pack or book a packing service.

Smart Move’s tough, reusable Boomerang Boxes make self-packing a breeze. If you’re out of time, professional packing teams offer end-to-end packing and unpacking services that make moving day fast, simple, and low stress.

#3. Disconnect and connect utilities and internet

Disconnecting and connecting utilities and internet services is essential to cross off your list of things to do when moving house early. It’s annoying to start life in your new home with no water, power, internet, or Netflix! Arranging the changeover of utilities and internet before moving day means you’ll be comfortable from Day One.

Some services, like internet, can take over a week to connect to a new property. Check with your provider to confirm lead times and plan accordingly. Communicating the date when you don’t need services at your old home means you won’t pay for a day longer than necessary.

#4. Declutter, donate, and discard

One of the best things to do when moving house is declutter, donate, and discard. Make time to sort out every room and consider EVERYTHING! We’re talking furniture, cupboards, clothes, kid’s rooms, linen, books, under the sinks, and anywhere else you have a stash of belongings. It’s helpful to make piles of items you plan to donate, discard, or sell so you can deal with things in bulk.

#5. Clean

SmartMove Storage Cleaning

When moving houses, the only experience nastier than seeing someone else’s mess is living in it. Cleaning your new place from top to bottom and inside out while it is empty is always one of our top tips for things to do when moving house.

If time is against you, consider hiring professional cleaners. If you don’t have the budget for professionals, grab the gloves, sponges, and roll up your sleeves. The upside of doing a deep clean yourself is that it helps you get to know your home. You’ll likely spot needed repairs in places easily overlooked when covered with furniture and decor.

#6. Insurance

SmartMove Insurance Calculator

Whether you’re buying or renting, insurance coverage is essential to include on your list of things to do when moving house. Insurance helps protect your home and contents against the unexpected from the day you move in. There are also insurance options to cover your belongings in transit, to give you coverage if items don’t arrive in the original condition.

Make time to compare different insurance options or use an online insurance calculator to get the best value package for your needs.

#7. Create a moving calendar

One of the most practical things to do when moving house is creating a moving calendar. A “to-do” list becomes next-level useful when mapped to specific dates, times, and owners for completion.

Moving house is a big job, and the secret to keeping it low-stress and on-track is breaking the big jobs into smaller tasks. Set deadlines, decide who is doing what and when, and note it all down in a diary or smartphone to make sure you stay on top of every detail. You’ll get a terrific sense of satisfaction by crossing off completed tasks and may even find you’ve created space in your day by staying organised.

#8. Update address information

It is never too soon to update your contact information with your new address on your list of things to do when moving house. Make a list of banks, memberships, subscriptions, charities, schools, doctors, vehicle information, insurance, driver’s license, vets, and the electoral office.

Set up a change of address with your local post office before moving day for total peace of mind around any updates that slipped your mind.

#9. Pack essentials for Night One

SmartMove Pack essentials

One of our favourite tips for things to do when moving house is to pack essentials for your first night. Essentials include kitchen basics like coffee (or tea) cups, plates, and cutlery for your household.

Other handy items are garbage bags, paper towels, items for washing and drying dishes, snacks, and pet food. Don’t forget toiletries, fresh clothes, linen, toilet paper, medications, and toys, if needed. You might also like to have a box cutter, tape, charging cords, basic cleaning supplies, a few tools, and a torch at your fingertips.

#10. Change the locks

Security is essential for your new home. When you move into a new property, the only way to have confidence that no one else can access your home is to change the locks.

One of the most important things to do when moving house is to schedule a locksmith to re-key the locks leading into your home through doors and windows. You might find you need to add a lock here or there too. The small call-out locksmith fee is worth it for peace of mind.

What to do when moving house BEFORE you close the door for the last time

If you have a move coming up soon, please consider our recommendations for 10 essential things to do when moving house. Make time to carefully plan and prep for moving day. We promise you it is worth the effort to start living in your new place as soon as possible.

For more smart moving tips and inspiration from the Smart Move team, visit our blog or contact us for help. We’re ready to get started when you are!

Overcome the Fear of Relocation with Professional Help on Your Side

Sydney has surely more in store than just being the blend of the exhilarating and easy-going coastal metropolis. The five million residents make it the largest city in Australia. The glittering Emerald City is always transient. People frequently move from one destination to another for their residential, industrial, commercial cause and this has made the existence of skilled as well-equipped removalists quite important. Let’s have a look at the home removals in Sydney and what role the removalists play in the relocation process.

Cut the prep time

Besides the removal process, another phase more complicated phase is the prep for relocation or removal process. This involves making a framework of the goods that you want to take with you and leaving unwanted goods behind. Although you can decide it better, having a house removal company can always help you to broaden the horizon of stuff that you can take with you or leave stuff behind for prior storage.

Make your move a less tense affair

Moving out of your home is already heartbreaking and if you are facing the same then the plight of packing and unpacking can be a huge load on your shoulders Hire professionals for your home removals and cut the work out of your home without giving any second thoughts.

Packing and Unpacking

This can practically take days or even weeks and a lot of effort. If packed improperly you risk breaking or damaging something that is near and dear to your heart. If you want to maximize the protection of your belongings, then let the professionals do it for you.


Moving isn’t just about packing and unpacking; it also involves shipping the items to your destination. House removal companies own the right vehicles to transport your items. The professional movers will load and unload your valuables safely in a van or a large lorry without damaging them.


You cannot pack your entire home and take it with you. Even if you can, there are certainly some items that will feel like unnecessary if you are moving for a temporary period of time. This is when you can take advantage of the storage facility of the removal companies and store your goods in their repository till the time you can take your stuff back.

The bottom line

When facing alone, moving can turn out to be an immensely stressful and time-consuming process. But when you decide to opt for the experts, you not just save time and energy but save a considerable sum of money on the packing and unpacking process as well. Hire the best home removalists in Sydney and making relocating to a new suburb as easy as anything!

Smart Move Removals and Storage have an extensive range of professionals who can help you to relocate to and from Sydney without any hassle. The professionals have a wealth of local knowledge that will ensure a hassle-free relocation. Our aftercare services are second to known and we reckon a name in the industry for our impressive, friendly service. Reach us and organize your relocation with one call!

Packing Boxes

Packing Boxes



Removal boxes – there is a difference!

Choosing good strong double-walled removal boxes for the job is just as important as choosing the right removalists when you’re moving house. You’d be heartbroken if the bottom of the box holding your wedding china gave way, leaving a heap of shattered crockery on the floor.

It’s also important to use the right size box when you are packing. And don’t overload them –  no matter how sturdy they are – they’ll become difficult to carry and more likely to break.


Remember these 4 Golden Rules

1. Always pack your belongings into removal boxes where possible

This makes transportation to and from the truck easier and, like a game of Tetris, it’s easier to stack regular shaped items than trying to put together a jigsaw puzzle of different sizes and shapes. It will also ensure all areas of the truck are filled, which will minimise dead space.

Removal boxes are, by design, made for the industry and have double walls, ensuring the box is strong and durable. Having double walls also makes the box stronger and less likely to be damaged. Removal boxes are also designed to be stacked on top of each other without collapsing – this is a basic requirement for any removal box.

2. If you can’t lift it, lighten the load

A common mistake is trying to cram as much as possible into removal boxes, which could spell disaster. Not only is it going to be too heavy to lift, but too much weight could weaken the box and it could break.

“The guide we use is: If you can lift it once, our guys can lift it all day,” says Dominic Rowswell, owner of Sydney-based removal company, Smartmove.

3. Take extra care with your breakables

  • If you’re packing yourself, the Smartmove experts recommend you use plenty of paper.
  • When packing breakables, place a layer of screwed-up packing paper (crush) at the bottom of the removal boxes.
  • Carefully wrap your breakables in packing paper and place on top of the crush.
  • Also put crush in between items to prevent them moving around inside the box,
  • Tuck some into the sides and finish with a layer on top before taping the box shut.

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4. Don’t be afraid of using more boxes than you’ll think you’ll need

Don’t skimp on the number of boxes you need, nor the quality. It’s better to spend a few extra dollars on buying boxes from your movers than replacing an item that gets broken because it’s been crammed into an inferior box.

Supermarket boxes are not designed to handle household goods, so specialist removal boxes are well worth the investment. Ask your movers what they recommend. Remember they’re there to help you.


Types of boxes

Book boxes

These are the smallest removal boxes and should be used for smaller/heavy items and correctly wrapped fragile items.

Things you might pack into a book box are:

  • Books (obviously)
  • Kitchen crockery, utensils and cutlery and appliances,
  • Vases, trinkets, photo frames and small breakables
  • Anything else that fits into the box


Tea chests

These medium-sized removal boxes are for items that are less likely to break. But don’t pack your entire collection of cast-iron pots into one box and expect it to hold. Balance heavier items with lighter things so the box doesn’t become unmanageable. Lift the box to check the weight as you go.

Tea chests are ideal for:

  • Linen, pillows, duvets and soft furnishings
  • Plastic kitchen items
  • Saucepans, shoes, boots, games and children’s toys



These large, upright removal boxes with a clothing rail are used to transport clothing on coat hangers.

Simply transfer your clothes from your wardrobe rail straight onto the portarobe rail, then at your new home transfer your clothes onto your new wardrobe rail, easy!

They are a great way to save time on packing and will keep your clothes crease­-free while in transit. Light weight items will fill the whole rail whereas jackets and other heavy clothing will need spacing out.

Remember not to overload your wardrobe boxes as they could break when being lifted.

Your removalists will probably bring the portarobe boxes along on the day of the move as they are quick and easy to assemble. But if you want a head-start, you can request for them to be delivered earlier.

Don’t forget to clearly label all your removal boxes with their contents and which room they belong in. Use a piece of tape on the top of the box and mark it clearly with a permanent marker (other ink can be easily rubbed off).

Now you have some awesome advice from the experts, your packing should be pain-free. Remember that although packing is time-consuming, it’s worth doing properly. By following the Golden Rules and making sure you use the right kind of box you’ll be assured of getting the job done. Happy Moving!

Oh Dear, It Looks Like Rain! And We’re Moving Today!

Oh Dear, It Looks Like Rain! And We’re Moving Today!

Photo of three ducks

You’ve planned meticulously and everything is on track for a seamless move, except that on moving day it’s bucketing down. The one thing you can’t control is the weather, so what do you do now to prevent damage to your furniture and boxes?


Follow the weather report

Take into account the season you’re moving in, and follow the weather reports for the week before your move to keep an eye out for bad weather.

Although they can give you some sort indication of what to expect, everyone knows that weather forecasts aren’t foolproof. Even when bright, sunshine is predicted, you may wake up on the day of your move to cloudy skies and showers.


Protecting your things

If it is wet, your removalists will be able to provide a good supply of plastic covers for your mattresses, bed bases, chairs and sofas. These covers can be used for other items as well, just ask your removalists to bring them on the day. Moving blankets will cover your furniture and goods but bear in mind they are not waterproof.

Items such as mattresses and other soft furnishings are likely to develop mould and mildew if they get damp. Good removalists will recommend using mattress and sofa covers, especially in the rain.

If the long-term forecast does predict rain on moving day, let your removalists know in advance, so they can put moving blankets on the floors to protect your home while the move takes place.

Boxes are definitely not waterproof, and the last thing you want is for the bottom to fall out of your boxes because they’ve got soggy, make sure you tape the boxes appropriately, don’t skimp on tape!

Your removalists should park their truck as close to the house as possible, so furniture and boxes don’t have to stand outside in the wet.

Electronic equipment like computers is particularly sensitive to water damage. So give them an extra layer of bubble wrap. Don’t forget to take care of your smaller items like laptops, DVD players and radios too.

Outdoor furniture is likely to be soaked if it has rained overnight. Move them under shelter if you can, and wipe them down, so they are not loaded wet.

Also if you’re moving outdoor plants and they are too heavy to move under cover, put a large bin liner over them and cover the base so the plant doesn’t get too waterlogged prior to the move. The last thing you want is water and soil leaking in the truck and damaging your other items.

When you arrive at your new home, ask your removalists if it’s possible for them to place your goods in rooms close to the entrance first to prevent too much mud and other debris being tracked into the rest of the house.


Safety first

Besides keeping your possessions safe, there’s also the human factor to consider. Navigating awkward items between point A and point B is difficult enough without wet slippery surfaces thrown into the mix.

Break out your hiking boots or other closed shoes with a good grip.

There will be a constant stream of people through both your old and new house. Put down old sheets and towels at the entrance.

They’ll not only protect your carpets and floors from mud and water, but prevent slipping accidents.

Don’t try to hurry your move along, this will invariably slow things down and accidents are more likely to occur.

Unfortunately there isn’t any real solution for moving in wet weather other than your removalists protecting your goods and being cautious to the best of their ability. Have plenty of towels available to dry off. And if it’s cold too, have a good supply of hot drinks.


Image courtesy of JustyCinMD,Flickr,CC BY 2.0


7 Quick Questions To Ask Your Removalist

7 Quick Questions To Ask Your Removalist

Man lying under pile of boxes


It’s not only best to choose a moving company that has a great reputation and a proven record for reliability, but value for money should also play an important part in your selection.

As part of this process, look for trustworthy references outside of the testimonials on their website. No one is going to put negative reviews from customers on their website are they?

So when you’re researching removalists, always check Google reviews for honest opinions on all elements of their service. Remember, you’re paying the moving company to do a job, so selecting a removalist is pretty similar to interviewing a new employee, you need good references.

When you’re moving house who better to talk to than a removalist to find out what you should be asking your prospective removalist company? Dominic from Smartmove – a moving company in Sydney – was put to the test when he answered a few questions.


1. Are your removalists reliable and trustworthy?

When people ask us if our guys are good, we say yes! They are the best.

Our guys are courteous, polite, hard working and can think for themselves with regards to etiquette and the customer’s needs.

Our client base is mid- to high-end and we move a lot of family homes so we only employ guys that we would be happy to have around our own children. We don’t employ people with offensive tattoos or those with a criminal record.

We also get asked if we use sub-contractors (removalists not employed by Smartmove but used when our bookings are full). We don’t.

Every one of our moves is undertaken by guys directly employed by us. That way we know you will receive the best service possible.


2. How much do you charge?

We don’t have any minimum charge whereas other removal companies can charge a minimum of 4­-6 hours. We charge the hourly rate to the nearest 15 minutes. Another moving company might run by the whole hour.

Our hourly rate is mid-priced with NO hidden extras – we are very transparent with regards to the costs, so there are no surprises on the day.

The overall cost of the move is kept to a minimum due to the efficiency of the removalists. They are dedicated to your move and you won’t catch them slacking!


3. How long will it take?

We get asked this a lot.

The truth is every move is different, we’re not able to give an exact duration but we are able to provide an estimated time based on information we are given. This depends on the size of the property and how easy it is to move furniture and boxes from the property to the truck (including having to move stuff down stairs and using lifts).

Some people might understate the volume of boxes and furniture being moved when they make the booking and would therefore get an inaccurate moving time estimate. This may cause issues on the day you’re moving house, when it takes longer than expected.

Customers are obviously present at the time of their move and can see the guys working at their optimum pace, so rest assured they do not drag the jobs out.

We confidently say that our guys will get the packing and move completed in the best time possible whilst being mindful of your belongings. We are a family run and owned business and can relate to our customers on more of a personal level.


4. What about insurance?

According to Australia’s consumer protection laws, you have to be a licensed broker to offer an insurance policy to people and we are not. People can take out insurance either by using our broker or their home contents insurance.

We do, however, carry transit insurance in the unfortunate event that our truck is involved in an accident or rolls while we’re transporting your goods. The truck, the guys and your goods (excess of $500) are covered in these cases only.


5. What is the general policy with boxes for customers who are packing their houses themselves?

About 10% of our customers use our pre-pack and/or unpack service so they don’t have the stress of packing or getting their hands dirty

As 90% of our customers pack themselves we recommend that lots of packing paper is used, and don’t be economical with your boxes. Rather spend a few extra dollars on more boxes than trying to overstuff them.


6. How do you handle complaints from customers?

We address any concerns immediately and investigate whether the complaint is valid. We don’t hide anything and try to be as open as possible with our clients.


7. Finally, what would the most important piece of advice you’d give to people moving house?

Be prepared.

Finish your packing by the day before your move. Anything that still needs to be done on the day of the move could delay the process.

Use professional removal boxes only, you’ll find removal boxes are strong and stack well in the truck. Don’t use a mixture of sizes and/or weaker boxes from a supermarket – you’re giving yourself a false sense of security if you think you’ll save money this way. They’re more likely to break. Also if you have plastic tubs and want to use them for your move that’s fine, just be aware they are made of brittle material and may crack as they are not meant to be stacked and transported.

Try not to underestimate the time you think it will take to move, leave the hard work to your moving company and trust us to get it done in the best possible time. You won’t be disappointed!

Image courtesy of Nick Rice,Flickr,CC BY-ND 2.0

Kids On The Move – How To Make Relocating Less Stressful

Kids On The Move – How To Make Relocating Less Stressful

Baby sitting in box

If you think moving house is stressful for you, imagine what it’s doing to your kids.

For most young children, a move can be a big, scary monster under the bed. But by employing some sound tactics, you can turn it into a big adventure.


Before the move

Kids pick up on your mood and will reflect your emotions very quickly.

Sadly not every move is made under the best circumstances, and if you’ve been forced to move as a result of a death or divorce, try to keep things upbeat when your children are around. Even though they’re already unsettled and insecure, children don’t like sugar-coating, so answer all their questions clearly, but gently.

Even if the opposite case is true, and you’re moving to a bigger house or for a new job, your children may still become anxious about leaving the home they’ve probably known their whole life.

Answer all the questions they have about the move as positively as possible.  For instance:

  • Reassure them that your pets will be coming too.
  • That their Granddad and Nana will know where the new house
  • That their friends can still come to play.

Here’s a few ideas to smooth the way before you move.


Turn it into a story

Use maps and pictures to show young children where the new house is in relation to your old house. Point out child-friendly attractions nearby. There are host of children’s books and DVD on moving house out there. Buy a few for bedtime stories. One of the all-time classics is The Berenstain Bears’ Moving Day.


Take them for a visit

Take them to see the new house, and show them their bedroom. If you’re planning to redecorate their room, create a mood board and let them contribute. Let them take photos or video on your mobile and create an album.

If your child’s old room had wallpaper, cut out a square and frame it for their new room, so they’ve got something on the wall that’s familiar.


Save the date

Draw up a calendar with moving day highlighted. Think along the lines of an Advent calendar, where you could include small treats for every day leading up to the move.


Let them help

Older children in particular can have fun while you’re packing. Let them pack a few boxes of their things themselves. Give them colourful markers and stickers to label the boxes.

When younger children see you putting their toys in boxes, explain to them that you are not throwing them away, and that the toys will be going along to the new house.

But at the same time, a move is an excellent opportunity to declutter the toy box. Children have the incredible ability of accumulating masses of toys. So encourage them to create a box of toys they no longer play with to give to boys and girls who aren’t as lucky as they are.


During the move

In an ideal world, arrange a playdate with grandparents, aunts or uncles or close friends on the day of the move. However, this is not always possible.

So if you have to look after them on moving day, explain to young children exactly what is happening and what to expect on moving day. Remember what they will see is a lot of strangers trooping in and out of their house, carrying away everything they are familiar with.

  • Give your kids specific jobs to keep them from getting under foot. This can include checking cupboards for anything that was missed or keeping an eye on your pets.
  • Try to keep to their routine as much as possible such as regular meal times and naps. If you have a portable DVD player, a good selection of movies will keep them occupied for hours.
  • Removal teams would normally will be with you between 7 and 7.30am and would crack on with loading up the truck if you need to do a school drop off.
  • If you have regular family activity of movie or pizza night, try to stick to these traditions even in the midst of the move. It’ll give kids a sense of routine and familiarity.


In the new house

  • Once you’ve moved into your new house, stick to regular bedtimes and other activities so that your child has a sense of continuity and structure in their day.
  • Let them unpack and arrange their rooms themselves.
  • Take family walks around the neighbourhood, not only will it give you an opportunity to meet your neighbours, but allow your children to familiarise themselves with where your house is in relation to other landmarks in the area.
  • Make a day of it and arrange family outings to local attractions. Have picnics in parks or take bike rides to nearby nature spots.
  • If your children are school-going age and changing schools, try to arrange a visit to meet some of their classmates before starting school..
  • Keep reinforcing the good things about the new house, new school and new neighbourhood.

It takes time for anyone to adjust to new surroundings, and for children (particularly younger ones) it can be even more overwhelming, so expect the odd tantrum, sulk or argument until they settle in. But if you’ve made them part of the whole moving experience, this should only be a temporary situation. So make the move fun!

Image courtesy of David Goehring,Flickr,CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.