Moving House Checklist

What you need to know when moving house

Moving overseas is a thrilling part of your life! With change on the horizon and a new country to discover and adapt to, there are so many things to look forward to as a new chapter is about to begin…

But despite the excitement of a new beginning, we understand that the process of moving - especially internationally - takes a lot of planning.

At Transworld we aim to make your move a positive and stress-free experience.

We’ve compiled a Moving House Checklist to help handle the hassle and get you relocated with ease. Complete with Moving Tips and a Moving Timeline, our checklist covers all the nitty-gritty details that need to be sorted out before the big move.

Prevent any last-minute surprises and ensure you’re well prepared - use our Moving House Checklist throughout your months of planning up to moving day (while we’re by your side, taking care of everything you need).

From making arrangements with your moving company to organising what needs to be done before moving into a new home, we’ve got you covered.

Simply plan for what’s coming up on the list, and tick tasks off as you go

Moving Tips

Insuring your move and ensuring your beloved pets can come with you - there are many things to consider when planning your relocation. Here’s all you need to know to organise what’s important to you and your family, and make the big move as stress-free as possible!

Moving can be a stressful time for your children, too. It can be hard to adjust to a new lifestyle and location, but this can be made easier by involving them in the packing process and inspiring them to learn about the new place so they know what to look forward to.

Encouraging your children to participate in the process will help them to settle in faster and refocus on the positive aspects of moving - the excitement of somewhere new - rather than the negatives of leaving home behind.

Tips: ensure your kids feel secure and supported

  • Make sure they have an easy means of communicating with friends back home
  • Ask kids to pack their own special box
  • Research their new school/daycare
  • Keep a small box of their favourite blanket, toy, mug/bowl handy for fast unpacking at the other end

Although some countries are easier than others to emigrate to with your pets, the one constant is how organised you need to be. These furry or feathered (or scaled) members of the family need your support to stay safe, loved, fed, and healthy throughout the moving and transit process until they are settled in your new home.

Look into pet-transport options, including quarantine restrictions for your new country, well ahead of time to avoid surprises, and to ensure you know when/where/how to collect them. You’ll want your pet to be as comfortable as possible, and for the journey to be quick and smooth for them.

Tips: make your pet’s journey comfortable

  • Visit the vet for a check-up and advise that you’re moving away
  • Ensure all vaccinations are up to date
  • Check on the quarantine period in your new country
  • Choose a special toy or personal item with your scent for them to travel with

Whether you’re moving across the ditch to Australia or across the globe to Europe, there are a few key things that’ll make your transition to life in a new country smoother, with just a little research required.

You can engage your whole family in these preparations, such as learning a new language or cultural traditions, or research new providers on your own such as banks, doctors, and schools.

Get familiar with your new area before you even arrive - check out Google Maps to find your nearest supermarket, so you can prepare a homemade meal to help your family settle in.

Tips: prepare for a new life in a new country

  • Keep passports, visa documentation, new addresses, and other key legal documents in your hand luggage
  • How will you manage your money overseas? Will you need cash when you arrive?
  • Where is your nearest supermarket/grocery?
  • Purchase adapters for your small electronics
  • Take the family to a language evening class, or try a fun app

Find out more about foreign exchange and get great competitive rates with Transworld’s partner, XE here.

When it comes to packing your home and contents to be shipped overseas, it’s important to pack well and label clearly - whether you’re moving your belongings immediately or putting them in temporary storage.

Make like Marie Kondo and declutter your space! Now’s a perfect time to sort through your effects and hold a garage sale or donate to second-hand stores anything you don’t wear/need/use anymore.

Daunted by the process? Most moving companies will help. At Transworld, we have a team of specialist packers on hand to carefully pack, label, and handle your effects - leaving you more time to manage the important stuff.

Tips: how to pack securely

  • Make sure all high-value items travel with you
  • Don’t polish your furniture right before the move
  • Declutter your space
  • Label all boxes and bags clearly and in detail, it’ll make unpacking and finding your belongings much easier at the other end

Find out more about moving box sizes and labelling.

Just as your health and vehicles are insured, your personal effects also require the same safety during transit to your new home.

Sometimes, things go wrong. Insurance for Accidental Physical Loss or Damage is one of the most important details to organise for your move, as it will cover your belongings from most incidents that may happen on the road.

Tips: safe-guard your belongings

  • Purchase insurance for the loss or damage of your belongings - Transworld's policy is fully comprehensive
  • Read your policy inclusions and exclusions before signing
  • Add on extensions such as electrical failure or mould & mildew to increase your cover
  • If you’re packing yourself, your insurance policy will be different - contact your moving company consultant to find out how this affects you

We offer FREE in transit storage insurance up to 28 days

You’re packed, Fido has all his vaccinations, your kids have their favourite toys (or, let’s face it, their iPad) in hand, everything is insured and planned to a T… now all that’s left is what’s left behind.

The last thing you want to think about when packing and moving is the tiresome task of cleaning - so leave it to your moving company. Contact Transworld’s sales consultants for a list of services and a house cleaning quote.


  • Allow plenty of time for cleaning if doing it yourself
  • Leave your old home in the condition you’d like to find it
  • Take the time to say goodbye, especially with children

Moving Timeline

From safely packing your furniture to ensuring your bank is aware of your new location, we know there’s plenty to organise. And time is of the essence!

1 month before moving day marks the time to put your plan into motion. It’s time to confirm all the transport and officially make arrangements with your moving company.

All lingering decisions now need to be made, alongside thorough preparation and education about where you’re headed - whether it’s the other side of the country, or the other side of the globe.

When should you start packing when moving house? You don’t need to start wrapping things up just yet, but the organisation and decluttering should begin.

  • Get informed about medical insurance and social security benefits in your new destination.
  • Find out about your tax requirements - in NZ and overseas.
  • Bringing your vehicle with you? Or buying one when you get there? Make sure your license is up to date.
  • Decide what items you’re taking or ditching.
  • Find out what the requirements are for your pets. You’ll need the time to organise for vaccinations and health checks.

Don’t forget to research about the area you’ll be moving too! You’ll need to gain some knowledge around the culture you’re stepping into… even if it’s just Australia, things will be different, and your family will want to adapt easily and comfortably.

Confirm your moving schedule:

  • Give your landlord a minimum of 21 days notice that you’ll be leaving.
  • Ensure you and your family have visas and confirm all entry requirements.
  • Pets vaccinated and ready to go.
  • Flights booked.
  • Airport transfer organised.
  • Renew passports.

The big day is only 3 weeks away, and we know this sounds frightening! Now is the right time to start informing all authorities and services of your move. This means sorting out all your providers in your new home, too!

  • Sort out any lingering repairs on your house and get them fixed, now.
  • Get your pet’s records transferred to your new vet.
  • Kids records transferred to their new schools, too.
  • Talk to your financial adviser about banking and currency exchange.

Do you have your valuables sorted? You’re going to have to start seriously getting ready to pack, and with this comes carefully categorising what’s valuable and fragile. Label those items so your movers are aware they require extra care.

Ensure everyone knows you’re moving, and your new address:

  • Service providers
  • All insurance companies
  • Post office
  • Doctors and dentists
  • Loan companies
  • Schools or daycare
  • All club memberships
  • Council, if taking a pet
  • Inland revenue
  • Hold a firearms license? Police need to be advised, too.

2 weeks away and your services now need to be cancelled. If you’ve got any belongings kept away from home, you’ll want to start collecting them. Lockers, offices, or with family? Make those journeys to get all your stuff together.

It’s also time to tie all legal ends and sign off any mortgage documents with your lawyer, and get any information you need on your new home from its previous owners.

  • Have you organised for an inspection of your house? If renting, you’ll need to sort this out ASAP.
  • If there’s any information the new owner or tenant of your current home needs to know, put it all together for them.
  • Get in touch with the current owners of your new house. Anything you need to know?
  • Need any prescriptions filled before you leave? Now’s the time to do it.
  • Service your vehicle.
  • Apply to redirect all your mail.
  • Make sure your move is insured.

Make sure your services are planned to be discontinued:

  • Water
  • Electricity
  • Gas
  • Landline
  • Internet
  • Any subscriptions

Get your house prepared for vacating. This means admin, admin, and admin. The house may start to look empty, but that’s essential in your thorough preparation for the journey.

  • You don’t want to leave anything behind, including food. Use up all remaining items in the fridge and cupboards. And drink the last of your alcohol.
  • Any outstanding bills? Pay them now.
  • Disconnect all fixtures and wall fittings. Get them ready to be wrapped and transported!
  • Own a firearm? Disable and keep in locked case.
  • Essentials sorted? Make sure you organise a box of all the most important items you’ll need on your first night overseas. Include blankets, sheets, snacks and devices. 

Have you thought about cleaning up your house once the move is complete? Probably not… because it’s not anything you want to think about. But it has to be organised. Don’t worry, most moving companies can sort that out. Read about our cleaning services here.

Handle the last of your items:

  • Dispose all dangerous goods you can’t take: ammunition, cleaning products, oils.
  • Have gas bottles professionally purged - although it’s cheaper not to take it and then buy one when you get settled into your new home.
  • Return library books or rental items.
  • Dismantle large furniture and systems, but be sure to keep all parts together.
  • Borrowed anything from a friend? Return!

Today is all about packing! It’s time to attack all the nitty-gritty details of separating and organising your items for the movers to arrive.

  • Disconnect your electronic equipment and utilities. Separate all components.
  • Are you taking your washing machine with you? Time to drain it after doing the very last of your washing.
  • Empty and dry out your fridge and freezer.
  • Make sure your kids have a bag each of important items, clothes and toys. You’ll want them to be comfortable and entertained tomorrow. Separate this stuff now before packing the rest away!

Last but not least, remember to get a good sleep tonight! You'll need energy and a good mood to make the most of the day without getting bogged down.

Prepare your move day must-haves:

  • All important documentation, especially your passports if going overseas
  • Electronic chargers and remotes
  • Foreign currency
  • Basic toiletries and medicines
  • First aid kit
  • Change of clothes
  • Bedding
  • Pen and paper

To do:

  • Organise a sweet and simple breakfast for tomorrow.
  • Got the keys for your new place? Know where to pick them up.

It’s finally moving day! By now there shouldn’t be anything left to organise. You’ve done the hard work in leading up to today, allowing you to focus on the exciting journey ahead!

When your movers arrive it’s a good idea to alert them to your priority box - the one you organised earlier with all your absolute essentials. This way you’ll hopefully arrive in your new home with everything you need to settle in smoothly.

Documents to keep on hand:

  • Passports
  • Visas
  • Airline and transportation tickets
  • Credit cards and cheque books
  • Marriage certificates
  • Insurance policies
  • Motor vehicle ownership

To do:

  • Make sure the movers have taken everything - check cupboards, attics and under the house.
  • Check gas and electric switches are turned off.
  • Ensure all doors and windows are shut and locked.
  • Give your house a final sweep for any leftover items.
  • Make sure keys are left for the new owner, tenant or passed to the real estate agent.
  • Record your final electricity, gas and water readings.

Now that you’ve completed the journey, your belongings have been delivered and your family is settling in - it’s time to celebrate your achievement!

What needs to be done before moving into a new home? Don’t forget the last of the list:

  • Connect all utilities
  • Check there’s no property damage
  • Introduce yourself to your new neighbours!

We know the process isn’t easy and there’s a lot to organise. You’ve done a fantastic job and we hope your new home is the start of a happy, successful future for your family.

Request a free quote for moving from New Zealand