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Arrange childcare for your moving day. Make plans for any younger children that you may not want involved on the day. It may be less stressful for them and yourself if they go to friends or relatives for the day.

Make arrangements for moving your pets. Moving can be very stressful for animals so you may want to check with your vet the best way to go about it.

Clear out unwanted belongings. Moving home is an ideal time to go through all your belongings and have a clear out. Local charity shops will welcome smaller items such as clothes and books. You should also be able to locate furniture recycling charities who will collect items you do not want to take with you.

Start running down the food in your freezer. Remember that ideally your freezer should be empty and defrosted before your move.

Arrange for meter readings and service disconnection / connection. Contact your service providers and notify them of your move. You will need to arrange for water, gas and electricity readings at the present home on the day of the move. You also need to make sure that all the services at your new home are connected on the day you move in.

Transfer your telephone number. Transfer or get your telephone number changed if necessary and arrange for your final bill to be sent to your new home. Get advice on aerials/satellite dishes. It is possible that your TV/FM aerials and/or satellite dish will not be suitable in the area you are moving to. Get specialist advice, but it is often a cheaper option to leave them behind and have new equipment installed at your new home.

Arrange for your post to be redirected. Contact Royal Mail if you want to have your post redirected to your new home. They need at least five working days notice to arrange the service and you can have post redirected for between one month and two years.

Organise the disconnection and reconnection of domestic appliances. Organise for a qualified plumber, electrician or gas fitter to disconnect your appliances (washing machine, dish washer, cooker, gas fire etc) in your present home and reconnect them in your new home.

Defrost your fridge and freezer. You should make sure that they are defrosted at least 24 hours before removal because moving them while still frozen can damage them.

Cancel deliveries. Cancel any regular deliveries you have to your present home, like newspapers or milk.

Make sure you organise a 'do not pack' pile. Any essential things you will need on the day before your move if you have requested a packing service and on the move day. These may include clothes, bags, shoes, coats, wash items, cutlery, plates, children's things, cleaning materials etc.

Valuables. Some small valuable items such as jewellery, watches, trinkets, money, bonds, coins, stamps etc are not covered by removers insurance. Pack these separately and take them with you.

If you require a packing service from us this will usually take place the day before your move.

Preparation. Make sure you tidy and prepare as much as possible to make packing easier.

To help make things run as smoothly as possible:

You can leave drawers and trunks with their contents intact, provided there are no fragile items in them. Don't fill large trucks with heavy items such as books.

Liquids, oils and paints must be placed into sealed containers. We cannot transport inflammable substances for you so you'll need to make sure that any petrol mowers, paraffin fires, etc are drained before we can move them.

Unless included as an extra service in your moving plan, you should take down curtains or blinds and pack them ready for the removal team.

Household plants need to be transported in containers to protect them during the move. Although we'll do everything we can to move them safely, any fragile plants may become damaged in transit because we cannot protect them from the effects of extreme temperature change.

Small furniture keys can easily go astray so leave them with the item of furniture and the packing / removal team will secure them to the unit.