I’m moving out for the first time.. again. And what I mean by that is, it’s my first move after my big move. It’s the first time that I’m leaving MY apartment for a new apartment.

Crazy how quickly the past two years have gone by. There’s going to be so many changes in the next year—it’s both incredibly exciting and nerve-wrecking at the same time.

So with moving out of my first apartment, I realized there’s actually such a process to it all. I guess in the past, although I’ve moved around a lot, it’s always been the “adults” that have handled the logistics of it all.

But now, for the first time, I’m the “adult”. So here we go.

I put together a checklist of things I need to accomplish before, during, and after this move. I thought I would share this checklist for those who are (or will be) going through the same process as I am right now.

Dealing with tenant agreements, hydro, address changes, apartment cleaning, moving day logistics…there’s just so much to tackle in such a short amount of time.

moving out of your first apartment

1. Before you even start apartment hunting, make sure you know what the terms of your current lease are!

Check for things like how early of a notice you have to provide, the steps you’ll have to take to hand back the keys, the condition you have to give back the apartment. Something as simple as how long of a notice you have to provide to your landlord or rental agent will help you decide when to start a new lease without paying two different rents within one month!

2. Write a signed move-out notice to notify your landlord or rental agent that you will be moving out.

I actually initially just sent out an email with my move-out notice to my rental agent but was quickly told that I would need a more official signed letter. So I ended up typing it up in Microsoft word, exporting to PDF, and signing it via Adobe Reader.

3. Make a list of all the areas you’ll need to apply for an address change

Make sure you do this before you get into the bulk of your packing and moving! I found that it made my life a LOT easier doing this a solid week or 2 before just so I can make sure I didn’t miss anything. There are certain things that you’ll need to make sure you get set up before you move (like BCHydro and Internet) so you have all the essentials when you move in!

4. Declutter as you pack

I can’t stress this one enough!! I tried my best to declutter while I was packing yet I still ended up with tons of stuff I got rid of once I moved! Be ruthless with your decluttering. I promise you won’t regret it when you have less stuff to unpack!

5. Organize cleaning at least 1 week before your handover date

To help ease your stress, if you have some overlap before you handover date, try to organize all of your cleaning at least a week before. Nothing is worse than the added stress of trying to clean, fix, and paint at your old place while you are also cleaning and unpacking at the new place. Some cleaners also require you to book several days before the appointment so make sure you figure out what you can do yourself and what you need to hire professional help for early on!

6. Move all the boxes to their respective rooms but pile them into a corner!

It should be common knowledge to label all of your boxes by room or area but make sure that you also sort while you unload your moving truck. If you’re unloading boxes first or moving boxes a day before you move your furniture, make sure you pile your boxes neatly in a corner of the room where the furniture will be occupying. That way, you can move your furniture directly to the areas where they will live so that it saves you more shifting around later on!

7. Unpack by room

To make your life easier, unpack by area so that you’re not running around the whole house while you’re unpacking! This will also save you from having half-unpacked boxes all over.

8. Order your furniture early

If you can, plan and organize your furniture before you move in so that you have time to order any furniture pieces! You definitely don’t want to be sitting in an empty apartment for months while you wait for even the basics like a couch and bed!

9. Try to take some time to yourself!

My last piece of advice is just to try to take some time to yourself after your move! Moving can get super stressful but is almost always rewarding. Make sure you schedule some time in your schedule to actually just not do ANYTHING and enjoy your new place!

Hope this was helpful for those who are currently looking to move! I definitely have lots of home content coming soon—so stay tuned!

Angel Zheng