You probably remember the “born planners” in school who dutifully recorded the date of every assignment and test in their calendar. On the other end of the spectrum sat the “wingers,” who assured others (and especially their teachers) that they could keep track of everything “in their head.”
You can take any habit to an extreme, but if you're planning to move out of your Chico apartment, the transition will go much smoother if you follow a timeline.
If you're a born planner, your timeline may begin months before your moving day – and you just might inspire grudging admiration from the wingers in your midst. But if you're like most people, you probably fall somewhere in the middle, making a one-month timeline a more reasonable guideline to follow:
Week 1 of Countdown
- Give your landlord a 30-day, written notice of your intention to move from your Chico apartment. Check your lease to ensure you fulfill any other terms of your departure so that you do not jeopardize the return of your security deposit.
- Hire movers, if you need them. Keep in mind that the last week of the month is the most popular time of the month to move, meaning that it usually books up first and can also be the most expensive. Moving during the third week of a month could give you a choice of days – weekdays and the weekend – and save you money, too.
- Begin pruning unwanted or unnecessary items so you don't have to move them.
- Decide which furniture you plan to take with you so you can sell or donate the rest.
- Pick up boxes at work or at local grocery stores. Helpful clerks should be able to tell you the best days and times of day to pick up boxes, based on when they unload them to stock shelves.
Week 2 of Countdown
- Plan your meals carefully for the next three weeks so that you use up what you have and minimize your load.
- Begin packing little-used and off-season items.
- Remove photos, artwork and clocks so you can pack them and repair the holes that are left behind on the walls.
- Notify your bank, credit and debit card providers and other important contacts of your new address. (Do not advertise this information on social media; you never know who's paying attention.)
- Begin dusting, vacuuming and deep-cleaning, choosing your targets carefully. For example, leave the kitchen and bathrooms for after you move out; you'll use them until the last minute. But you can get a jump on cleaning ceiling fans and windows.
- Hire a cleaning service or revert to the born planner strategy of scheduling a block of time to return to your Chico apartment after you've moved out to clean it thoroughly and from top to bottom.
Week 3 of Countdown
- Leave a forwarding address with the post office.
- Transfer your utilities to your new address.
- Cancel or transfer your magazine, newspaper or Netflix subscriptions.
- Give your plants a final watering so they aren't dripping wet, and heavier to move, on moving day.
Week 4 of Countdown
- Schedule a final walk-through with your property manager. Find out what repairs, if any, your property manager may withhold from your security deposit.
- Pack a small box containing everything you'll need for the first night in your new home, just in case your move goes late or you're too tired to unpack. Consider packing sheets, silverware and cups and basic toiletries.
- Consider getting cash for moving day so you can stow away your credit or debit cards until after you move.
This timeline won't put born planners to shame, but even the wingers should find that it doesn't cramp their free-flowing style. And it will ensure that nothing falls through the cracks as you leave your Chico apartment and begin a new phase in your life.