Moving house is not a walk in the park. I've moved house more than 10 times in my life. And I hate it. I've hunted for a new house, packed my life, moved. Well, I wish it was that smooth, however, in real life I have always encountered some issues, delays or problems. This is why, Auntie Sabri has written this step-by-step guide to moving flat in London without going crazy.
Start (as) early (as possible)
With a little bit of Marie Kondo's advice, start clearing your house of unwanted and unnecessary things as early as possible. Even if you still have six months before your move, if you don't want to get stressed about it, start today. Minimalism is key to living a happy life, but it's also especially useful to help you save money when moving house in London.
Get your Boxes together
You can go to your local supermarket or shop to pick up a couple of boxes for free, they don't normally mind if you ask politely. You can also buy them from Argos or similar stores. Remember to get some tape and bubble wrap too!
Instead of packing a few clothes then moving over to the kitchen and then back to clothes, plan your move in advance. Start from one single thing like a section of your wardrobe and once that's cleared (AKA you've got rid of everything you no longer use), move to the next section like your shoes. Do a bit every day instead of leaving a big bulk to the end. As you fill up your boxes, pile them away.
Book your stall at flea markets
Remember that moving house is a great opportunity to free up space in your life (and mind) by getting rid of unwanted and unused items. Don't throw everything away. You can give things to charity, but you can also make extra cash by selling some of your things at flea markets. Remember to book in advance as they fill up pretty quickly.
You can also put your stuff online and give it away for free on Freecycle or trying to sell it on Gumtree.
Clean as you go
Probably the worst part of moving house. But it's a necessary part if you want to get your full deposit back. There are a few things you can do to clean your house properly and without too much stress. First of all, keep your house clean. I know it's stupid, but it's far easier to clean a house already clean that doing a massive cleaning session at the end. For example, you can start keeping your shower, fridge and oven clean now, rather than spending hours scrubbing them at the last second.
In the end, you can also hire a cleaning professional to do it for you if you are too busy.
Renting a Van
During my first years in London, I could fit all my belongings into a couple of suticases, but as I felt more at home in the city, I started owning more things like home decorations, plants and other large items. On my last move in London, before departing for my long sabbatical, I hired a man with a van to take my stuff to the storage space I had booked. Otherwise, if you are part of a car-hire scheme and you feel confident driving around London, you can also drive your van.
Make sure to check the parking situation at both locations beforehand so that you don't encounter difficult situations.
Once you move into your new apartment, make sure to write your own inventory and send it to your landlord as proof. Take photos of everything as well and store them in a safe place for your future reference.
Redirect your Post
This is something that people often postpone, but in fact it takes only a few minutes to do and it will make your life much easier in the future.
Write a last-minute reminder
It’s easy to forget those final things when you are in a rush to leave. Make a list of your last-minute to-do list and stick it to your front door. Include things like reading your meters, dropping the keys, turning off electricity and gas and leaving your new address for the new tenant.