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Alexandria Apartment Search Tips

How To Make A Smooth Move


Financing your move
Moving expenses add up quickly. Remember these basic costs, estimate them and add them up for a rough total. You'll know whether or how soon you can afford to make the big move to your new apartment.

  • Security deposit plus first month's rent on the new apartment.
  • Movers or truck rental (and pizza for all your volunteer friends.)
  • Moving supplies, such as boxes, packing materials, furniture blankets.
  • Separate storage space if needed.
  • Costs for new or relocated phone lines in the new apartment.
  • Cleaning/repair costs for cleaning up or making any necessary repairs to your old apartment.
  • Other. Remember, there's always that intangible bunch of stuff that you have to buy once you're in a new apartment.

Reminder: Keep all receipts for your moving related expenses. If you file an itemized tax return, you may be able to take these as deductions.

Planning Ahead
Once the big decision on a new Alexandria apartment has been made, you'll be a much happier mover if you do a little planning ahead both now and closer to your moving date.

  • Insurance
    Check your renter's insurance policy to see if it covers your possessions during a move. If you don't have renter's insurance, now's the time to get it.
  • Your new address
    Order printed return address labels with your new address as soon as you know it. You can use these, plus any labels you have with your old address, to fill out change-of-address cards (get them at your post office) in a flash. Send these cards to all who need them. Also start filling out the space provided for change-of-address on your monthly credit and financial statements.
  • Picking the date
    Move to your new apartment on a weekday if you can, when banks, utilities and government offices are open.
  • Utilities
    Remember to order service transfers for electric, gas and phone. Keep track of the scheduled service transfer dates. Be sure to give yourself some overlap time if possible.
  • A few days before
    Scope out the parking possibilities outside your new apartment at roughly the same time of day as your move-in ETA. If necessary on the morning of your move, you may be able to reserve a parking space with your car. Or your new landlord may be able to help.

Packing Packing Packing
Here's your action list for efficient and productive packing:
  • Start saving your newspapers now. They make great packing paper.
  • Get boxes, from your grocer or a moving specialist. Also get tape and ideally a tape gun to zip through all those boxes.
  • Designate a corner of your apartment as the "packing station." Start early and pack a little each day to avoid last minute marathons.
  • Have a garbage bag and an extra box handy for things you plan to throw or give away. (Don't move anything you don't have to.)
  • Label each box with the destination room on it, and, if you're moving long-distance, also your name and a number, such as "1 of 56," for each box.
  • Pack breakables with several layers of paper and add extra cushion around groups of three or four. Glasses go in rim-down; plates go on end, never flat.
  • Books and other heavy items should go in small boxes.
  • Save bulky linens, pillows and the like for last. If you run out of boxes, large garbage bags are a quick alternative.
  • Dressers can stay loaded with clothes unless the furniture is extremely heavy.
  • The day before, pack essentials you know you'll need right away (such as sheets, towels, toiletries, and a change of clothes) in a suitcase that you can spot right away amid the clutter. You may want to flag a special box or bag for your cleaning and paper supplies, too.
  • Other living things: Load houseplants last and unload them first. If you have a cat or dog, you may want to ask a friend to take it for the day. Moving day can be even more stressful for your animal than it is for you!

Quick Moving Tips
  1. Scope out the parking situation near your new home. Don't drive up in a moving van and expect to get "Doris Day" parking (right in front of your destination.)
  2. Send out change-of-address forms.
  3. Review homeowner's insurance policy to determine whether your possessions are covered during your move.
  4. Pack all books and heavy items in small boxes.
  5. Label contents on every box. Note the room each box should go into. Mark fragile boxes on every side.
  6. Code stereo and computer wiring with tape for easier re-installation.
  7. Keep all your moving receipts for moving related expenses; you may be able to use them as deductions if you itemize your taxes. Click here to download Publication 521 to determine rules for moving-related tax deductions, or call the IRS for more information.
  8. Leave clothes in dresser drawers unless unit is exceedingly heavy.
  9. Wrap plates, saucers, and china individually, then bundle them in groups of three or four. Stand them on end in the carton; never lay them flat.
  10. Wrap cups and glasses individually and pack them rim down in the box. If items are particularly heavy, pack one box inside another.
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