Last year saw one of the largest property booms in UK history and 2022 shows no signs of slowing down. For first time buyers or those who want to refresh their memory, we have created your essential guide of things to remember when moving home in the UK.
Get ahead of the game
Even if you are just thinking about moving, it's always a good idea to have done your research. It is absolutely vital to build up a realistic picture of your potential outgoings. Fees to factor into your initial considerations are:
- Stamp duty (ranges from 2% to 12% for properties over £125,000). Money Saving Expert offer a really simple Stamp Duty Calendar
- Deposits. The UK average deposit for a first time buyer is 15%
- Mortgage valuations and fees (costs anything between £150 - £1500)
- Surveys (between £250 and £1200 depending on the level of survey)
- Legal costs (between £850 and £1500 +VAT)
- Electronic transfer fees (approx £40)
- Estate agent costs if selling own home (between 0.75% and 3.5%)
- Building insurance (approx £170 a year)
- Removals - contact our team for advice based on requirements
- Maintenance and repairs for your new home (dependent on needs)
- Council tax rates - check Council Tax Bands
- Utility bills - Refer to Ofgem’s guidance for consumers or direct with suppliers
- Leaseholder costs - Refer to the GOV.UK website for Leasehold Guidance
- Notice costs for tenants (discuss this with your landlord)
If you are relocating to a new area or not yet sure, research the practicalities. Find out about the area's schools, healthcare, transport systems, council services, job prospects, community, retail and very important to many, parking! Check out the Home Owners Alliance “How do I choose a new area to live in?” article for helpful home moving tips.
Be prepared to be prepared, you may find your dream home quicker than you anticipate.
Time to get organised!
You have found your dream home. The mortgage has been agreed, surveys are complete and you are eagerly awaiting your moving date. For families, this is an essential time to look at schools. The GOV.UK website is full of information on the school admission process and you can also talk to the relevant council where you will reside. If you are moving jobs, find out about relocation costs and the practicalities.
Now is also a great time to think about what you want to take to your new home, helping to further save on costs and stress. Create a full inventory of your household possessions and work out on the floor plan of your new home where you will put these items. This will allow you to recognise what you do and don't need to take with you and better inform your removal costs. Now is also a great time to order those packing materials. We have a great range of moving boxes and accessories on our online shop.
It’s a date!
The date for exchange has been set. Now is the time for your initial planning to come to fruition. Here are some of the more practical things you need to put in place:
- Confirm school placements
- Inform your current or new employer
- Book time off work
- Inform your utility companies
- Book WiFi and TV installations
- Inform the post office for mail redirection
- Book your removals
- Consider if you need any storage options within your removal package
- Order any additional furnishings you may need
- Arrange for cleaners in your new home
- Book overnight accommodation if the journey is far
- Start packing and disposing of unwanted items as planned. Have a clear labelling process and system so your removers can put everything in the right place
- Arrange child and pet care for moving day
- Notify local services of your moving date. This could be window cleaners, newsagents or cleaners etc
- Inform your local council of your moving date
- Let your neighbours and relevant people in the community know
The final week...eek!
As the moving date approaches, avoid the understandable stress that often comes with this part of the process.
- Collate all of your paperwork and have it in an easy to reach place
- Finalise any last minute packing
- Ensure you have all the keys to the property ready to hand over
- Take care of your white goods; defrost the fridge freezer, clean and drain the dishwasher
- Give away or dispose of any last minute items or return borrowed ones
- Wash and dry any clothing or linens to be packed
- Create an essentials pack for things you need immediate access to on the day such as items for cooking, washing and sleeping. You will also need a separate box for moving day essentials such as tools, phone chargers, stationary
- For families, an essentials box for the children is a must. Pack a box with toys, entertainment and whatever else can keep them occupied. It is unlikely you will have immediate WiFi access
- Ensure you have the funds available to pay for removals and any other suppliers on the day of moving
- Send family and friends the details of your new address
- Use up any perishables in the fridge or freezer which you can not take to your new home
Who to tell when you are moving home
As well as family and friends and your obvious utility companies, there are many other entities to inform when moving home in the UK. This can include:
- Your employer
- Your bank and financial providers such as loans, credit cards and store cards
- Mobile phone provider
- Online shopping such as Amazon
- National Insurance
- DVLA and V5C logbook
- Local Council/Electoral Roll
- Health and fitness centres
- Newspaper/magazine subscriptions
- Community groups and clubs
- TV and WiFi providers
- TV Licensing Agency
- Car insurance and breakdown cover
- House and pet insurance
- Travel insurance
- Any healthcare services (NHS or private)
- Veterinary services
- Professional services such as cleaners, accountants or solicitors
Twas the night before moving
The night before moving house can be a strange and emotional moment for some. Take this time, sound in the knowledge that everything is in place for the following day. There are, however, some last minute things you can do to put your mind at ease. Take one last look around your home and check you have everything you wish to take. Ensure your essential moving day kit is ready and accessible. Make sure you have all keys to the property and that windows and doors are secure. Charge your phone and get a good night's sleep.
The big day!
It is here, it is time to move into your new home. A new chapter awaits. Have one final check of your property, remove any bedding and items you are taking and record your utility readings. Breathe a deep sigh of relief as you leave or pass over your keys and head off to your new home.
Once you arrive at your new property, there is much to be done.
- Unpack your essentials kit and get the coffee and tea on the go
- Welcome and guide your removal company around
- Account for all of your items on your removal inventory
- Check for any damaged items and only sign off the removals only when happy to do so
- Find a safe place for your paperwork and personal documents
- Record the utility readings and take photographs
- Test the boiler, hot water and electricity
- Check all fixings work including keys,window and door locks
- Check both the indoor and outdoor spaces to ensure there are no hazards for your child or pets
- Clean your property if not provided by a supplier
- Get beds and children’s areas set up to relax in at the end of a long day
- Set up an area for your pet to avoid any anxiety
- Make a note of emergency contacts in the local area
Finally…order in a well deserved takeaway, it's been a long process, let alone a long day.
Time to enjoy your new home!