Considering the magnitude of the moving process, it can be a challenge to effectively plan and organize all of the complicated aspects of your approaching relocation, along with handling all of the laborious moving-related tasks. Along with key issues to take care of, like these, you also need to gather all of the necessary paperwork. All things considered, paperwork may seem like the simplest task to complete on your moving checklist, but it often proves to be more time-consuming and nerve-wracking than originally anticipated. Not only does collecting and organizing all records and papers need prior, during, and immediately after your relocation take time, effort and diligence, but you also need to keep it safe. It is important to keep in mind that procedures for issuing and/or updating documents can take a long time to complete, so preparing paperwork as early as possible is your best bet to eliminate any potential problems when moving day arrives.
Documents to Collect Pre-Move
While some of the documents you need to take with you when moving are already in your possession, some will need to be retrieved from different institutions. Here is a list of the documents you will need:
Personal IDs. Personal IDs include:
- Birth certificates
- Driver’s license
- Social security cards
- Marriage/divorce certificates
- Military documents (I/A)
Be sure to gather all personal IDs for yourself as well as for each member of your family. Some of these documents will be needed during your relocation, so be sure to keep them on hand at all times.
Moving Documents. If your relocation includes hiring a moving company to transport your belongings, you will be provided with important moving documents. These include a signed contract, along with a binding estimate, inventory list, moving-guide pamphlets, etc. These documents will be needed frequently throughout the moving process, so keep them secure and easily accessible during your relocation until moving day. When moving day arrives, place all moving-related paperwork in a secure spot, such as a lockbox – just don’t leave it behind by mistake!
Financial Documents. Financial documents include:
- Credit cards
- Bank statements
- Savings account statements
- Bank transaction statements
- Income tax papers
- Tax receipts
- Tax deduction bills
- Loan papers
Be sure to keep all financial documents in a designated folder and away from potential prying eyes. Also, keep track of all moving receipts because moving-related expenses can be used for tax deductions at the end of the year.
Property Documents. If you are moving into a home you purchased and/or out of one you sold, you will have a mountain of property-related documents to keep up with, such as:
- Selling and buying agreements
- Lease copies
- Mortgage documents for new and old homes
- Property insurance policies
- Auto insurance cards
- Registration documents of motor vehicles
Medical Records. To keep everyone healthy, it’s important to visit your doctor shortly before your move so you can obtain all medical documents needed post-move Also, be sure to transfer all prescription medications, and obtain dental records from your dentist’s office. If you have pets, you’ll also need to retrieve copies of veterinary records and vaccination certificates.
School Records. If you have kids, don’t forget to collect their school records. This is important because you will need them to enroll your kids into new school systems after the move. If your child is applying for college, be sure to request certified copies of his/her school transcripts.
Documents Needed When Moving Abroad
If you are moving abroad, you will need to gather a somewhat different set of documents. They include:
- Valid passport
- Visa and work permit
- International health insurance policy
- Immunization records
- Pet information and vaccination certificates
- Emergency contact list, including the address and contact details of the U.S. embassy in your new country
It is also a good idea to obtain an apostille stamp on all important documents (birth certificates, marriage certificates, degree certificates, professional licenses, etc.) when moving abroad. This will assure foreign officials and government agencies that your documents are legit.