Finding and renting a new place of your own is exciting and complicated at the same time. There is so much to keep track of.
That’s why renters—who make up 36% of America’s 122.8 million households—need to plan for the transition properly. If you’re lucky enough to have a recently approved rental application, it’s time to make a game plan for moving into your rental house.
There are differences between moving into a rental home versus a permanent home. To help you plan out your move, we’ve created 12 tips for when moving into a new house that renters (specifically) should pay attention to.
What to Do Before Moving into a Rental House
For those preparing to move into a new rental house, these tips will help make the transition as seamless as possible.
1. Prepare Early for Your Rental Property Move
Your relocation will be easier if you begin the planning process at least two months in advance. It may seem too early to start preparations, but it will help simplify and streamline your move in the long run.
How to Prepare for a Rental
Here are several tasks you should complete, whether you’re moving into a rental property or a permanent home.
Talk With Your Old Landlord
If you’re already renting, you need to let your current landlord know you aren’t renewing your lease and the day you’re leaving. You’ll want to check your rental agreement to see how many days notice is required.
When you let the landlord know, get a move-out checklist from them. This list can include what damage needs to be repaired, when to turn in keys and how, and any other qualifiers you need to do to get your security deposit back.
Check-In With Your New Landlord
Whether this is your first place or the latest place, you’ll want to contact your new landlord before moving in. Ask them questions like:
- When can you get your keys?
- Does the landlord want to be present when you start moving in?
- What utilities should you be setting up on your own?
- Do you have a parking spot, and if so, where is it?
- When is rent due and how do you pay?
You’ll also want to double-check that both you and your landlord have the same move-in date.
Take Inventory of Your Stuff
It’s a good idea to create an inventory list of your things so you can use it for packing, moving, and unpacking to make sure nothing gets lost along the way.
Make a Packing Schedule
It may seem early to make a packing schedule, but you never realize how much stuff you have until you have to pack it all up. A schedule will make the process easier in the long run.
2. Hire a Professional Moving Company
Some people believe they can handle their move into a new rental property on their own, but it’s not the best option most of the time. Hiring a professional service, like Mesa Moving and Storage, can be a great investment. We have affordable plans that will fit your budget, and our professionals will ensure your valuables arrive safely at your new home.
Some tenants may have to get permission from the property manager before hiring a moving company. These agents decide whether they’ll grant access to your movers. Getting approval before moving day will ensure a smooth moving process.
3. Forward Your Mail to Your New Address
Many rental properties assign specific mailboxes to each resident. Before you move in, ask your landlord for your rental property’s mailbox number.
Once you receive your official move-in date, notify the U.S. Postal Service and schedule a date to forward your mail. You can complete the form online or at your local post office at your convenience. After you move in, check the box to see if the key works and if the previous owner has taken everything out.
4. Schedule a Date to Turn on Your Utilities at the Rental Property
In a permanent home, you’re generally responsible for paying for all utilities, but it may be different on a rental property. Depending on the terms of your lease, you may be responsible for some, but possibly not all, utilities.
After moving in, make sure everything works. Turn on light switches, stove dials, and faucets to see if your electricity, gas, and water are on. Once you know which you are responsible for, contact each utility company to transfer them into your name and set a start date for each one.
5. Transfer or Set Up Your Cable and Internet Account Information
Contact your different providers to switch your cable television, internet, and other service accounts to your new rental property. Are you moving to another area with different service providers? Ask your landlord for the contact information of each one.
If your rental property covers these amenities in its leasing agreements, then you won’t need to transfer these accounts. Instead, schedule a shut-off date for these services for your old place.
6. Create an Interior Design Map
If you haven’t received one, ask your landlord for a floor plan of your rental property about a month before you move in. If they don’t have one, you can make one of your own.
Use this floor plan to create your interior design map. Decide where the furniture you already have is going to go. Make sure to measure your current furniture to see that it will fit through the doorway of your new place.
Once you have a rough outline of how you want your new place to look, you can make a list of what you’ll need once you’re moved in.
There’s no need to overwhelm yourself. You can take it room by room.
7. Pack Your Items
You’ll need to pack your valuables for the move to your new place. Before you move, get rid of anything that’s not needed or hasn’t been used in a long time. If necessary, sell the items or donate them.
Next, purchase affordable supplies to pack your items. After you pack your valuables and label each box in detail, indicate what each box contains, whether the items are fragile, and the room it belongs in your rental property.
8. Take Apart Your Furniture
You’ll need to disassemble large furniture, such as desks, tables, and other large items, so they’ll be easier to carry to your new place. As you disassemble furniture, measure them to make sure they’ll fit through the doorway of your new place if you haven’t already.
Also, make sure you have your furniture instructions and the right tools nearby to make the taking apart process easier.
If you choose to do this on your own, ask if any friends can help. Offer them pizza or some other easy-to-order treats as a token of gratitude for their assistance.
If you’d rather have someone else handle all this, a professional mover can assist you with this process.
Once You’ve Moved Into Your New Home
These tips are for what to do when moving into your new rental and how to make it into a home.
9. Conduct an Inspection of the Property and Fill Out Your Move-In Checklist
On moving day, you should complete an inspection of your old property and the new one. If you’re moving from a rental property, take pictures with timestamps to document the condition of every room. Keep these pictures in case your landlord disputes the condition of your property.
When you arrive at your new property, complete a second inspection.
Your new landlord should provide you with a move-in checklist. It helps you document the condition of your rental unit on the day you moved in. Take note of any damage present on the property—including dents in walls, scratches on floors, and cracks in the ceiling.
After you complete the checklist, take a set of corresponding pictures. Make sure you timestamp each photo. Rental properties may need a few repairs to bring them up to code. Schedule these repairs after you complete your rental move-in checklist.
10. Make Extra Copies of Keys
After your leasing office gives you keys, make extra copies. You can visit a home improvement store to make additional copies, just in case you get locked out. If needed, you can give a spare set to a friend or family member.
11. Buy Renters Insurance for Your Rental Home
If you don’t already have a plan, make sure you contact a local insurance agent to get renters insurance. These plans will protect you in case of a burglary, fire, flood, or other incidents that could significantly damage your property.
There are different types of renters insurance available:
- Personal Property: Covers the value of your more valuable possessions if something happens to them
- Personal Liability: Covers you legally in case someone tries to sue you over an injury in your home, such as tripping over something or slipping on ice
- Medical Payments: Covers medical fees in case an actual injury happens in your home
- Loss of Use: Covers costs for when your home is no longer livable, like if there was a fire or flood that forced you to live elsewhere
You should update your policy if you already have renters insurance.
12. Make Your Rental Property Your Home
There are several tasks you should take care of after moving in, such as:
- Requesting any maintenance changes
- Finding the trash and recycling bins, and exactly where they go for collection
- Learning what day and time the trash and recycling collection occurs
- Getting local store recommendations
Finally, it’s time for the fun part: Making your rental house a home. It’s time to unpack all your items and customize the space to your liking. You can look at your personal inventory to see what else you want to buy to make you more comfortable.
Once everything is set up, it’s time to call loved ones and show off your new place. After all that work, you deserve to show off your new space a little.
Unexpected Moving Delays Into a Rental Property
Sometimes, residents cannot move into a property on their scheduled day because the former resident hasn’t finished moving. You may have to temporarily store your valuables in an area, like Mesa’s Household Goods and Storage Facility, if you’ve already scheduled to move.
Let Us Help You Make the Moving Process Easier
Are you moving into a rental house in Salt Lake City, UT; Boise, ID; or Denver, CO area soon? Then Mesa Moving and Storage can streamline your moving process. Our professional movers and friendly staff will help make your upcoming move an easy one.
So contact us to schedule a consultation today!