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Tips for Moving Home: Everything You Need to Know

Buying a home is one of the biggest investments you’ll make in your life, so it’s important to do everything you can to make sure it’s the right decision.

This blog post will help you prepare for moving home, understand the costs involved, and provide useful resources and advice on things like mortgage rates and address forwarding. By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making the move as smooth as possible and hopefully stress-free!

Preparation for moving home

Moving home is a big decision, and it’s important to do everything in your power to make it as smooth and stress-free as possible.

Here are some tips to help you get ready: Put all of your important documents to one side and store them in a safe location, this can be bank statements, proof of identity, or anything the bank or solicitors might need to move things along and get the ball rolling.

Once everything is in order, start packing! Start by sorting through all of your belongings and putting them into piles based on what you plan to keep and discard. Once everything is in a pile, start packing it up, but remember whatever you plan to keep you’re going to need to slug around and sort in your new home, so if it’s not a definite yes, consider chucking it.

Don’t forget to label and date each packing box, you could even take photos of the contents, so you know exactly when and where everything went during the moving process. And last but not least, have fun packing!

The costs of moving

Moving can be a daunting task and anxiety-fueled, but with a little preparation, research and due diligence, the costs can be planned for and reduced significantly.

Start by gathering information about the cost of moving in your area, and then compare rates and services from the range of options. Make sure to ask questions and get estimates from different companies.

It’s also worth mentioning, just because one company is the cheapest option they’ll be the most suitable for your move. Check reviews on trusted websites and ask friends or family for recommendations as sometimes companies might offer a referral discount for repeat business.


This is aimed at more first-time buyers but can apply to people buying an additional second home or looking to build up a property portfolio.

Normally a deposit will be around 5-20%, but can vary depending on the housing market, property value, interest rates and affordability assessments.

It’s also worth noting that higher deposits will typically give you a lower interest rate, making your fixed monthly outgoings more controllable.

With the average UK house price now sitting at £295,903*, you’ll be looking at between £14,795 and £59,180 for a deposit, there is also a Government scheme to help first-time buyers get onto the property market, you can find all the requirements here.

Stamp Duty

I’m sure most of you’re familiar with Stamp Duty and what to expect if you’ve already moved home already but to recap it’s essentially a tax for buying land or property in England and Northern Ireland.

You can find all the details on the government website if you want to go in-depth but the highlights are:

  • Residential properties costing more than £250,000 will incur Stamp Duty unless you’re buying a property for the first time.
  • First-time buyers can buy a house up to £425,000 without incurring Stamp Duty and after this, you can claim relief on the tax for properties valued up to £625,000.
  • If you’re buying an additional property, such as a second home, you’ll pay an additional 3% on top of Stamp Duty on properties costing more than £40,000
  • Stamp Duty applies to both freehold and leasehold properties
  • Stamp Duty doesn’t exist in Scotland and Wales, but they each have their own respective taxes for buying property.

Valuation fee

This is just one of the many fees we’re going to touch on but it’s worth looking at because all these small fees can add up and cause a nasty shock if you’re not planning for them.

A valuation fee is where someone from the mortgage lender or a representative will come to the property you’re looking to purchase and value it and decide how much they’re willing to lend against it.

Some lenders will not charge for this, and some lenders will charge anywhere between £150-£2000, so it’s worth checking and comparing.

It’s also worth noting this type of audit is not a structural survey by any means, so it’s worth organising a surveyor to check the house of issues which sting you later down the line.

Surveyor’s fee

I’m sure by now we understand the value of an independent specialist auditing one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make in your life.

The average cost for a property survey can vary depending on location, depth of the report and property value but on average you’ll be looking at around £200-600.

This might sound like a luxury or a non-essential option but you don’t want to be investing £200,000 into a property to find out it’s got damp, foundation or structural issues.

And if you haven’t already you can head over to various social media channels and see popular videos of new homes getting reviewed and surveyed and finding various issues from guttering, electrics and plumbing. So if you think the house you’re buying is fine, get a professional and make sure.

Legal fees

Love it or hate it, most of us can’t sell a home without a solicitor or licensed conveyancer (that’s a posh word for someone who helps with buying and selling property)

On average the fees will vary from £800 Ex VAT and up, depending on the value of the property but, you’ve got to take into account the searches and other small fees along the way.

You could be looking at around £1200+ all in by the time all the legal paperwork is done and dusted.

E-transfer fee

Luckily this is one of the smaller fees when moving house, but it’s worth adding this to the list of costs to expect as lenders will charge you for sending the funds from your mortgage to your solicitor.

This is around £45 on average, but it’s worth checking with your lender or broker.

Estate agent fee

The good news with estate agents is that the fee is usually discussed upfront prior to the house going on the market, so you’ve already got this figure in your forefront.

Depending if you’re opting for a typical high street agent or an online agent, you’re costs will be calculated differently. 

Most bricks and mortar agents will use a percentage between 1-3% of the property value to calculate their fee for their assistance in selling your property. Newer estate agents tend to offer a flat fixed rate which can be cheaper depending on the terms and conditions and if your property sells or not.

The good news with estate agents is that the buyer never pays any fees, just the seller.

Additional mortgage fees

A lot of mortgages will have a variety of small fees tucked away, such as a booking fee, arrangement fee or if you’ve used a broker, these might be replaced by a broker fee instead which can vary but typically around £750 depending on the value of the property etc.

Ongoing refurb or maintenance costs

Once you’ve moved in and unpacked, it’s time to plan what you’re refurbishments you’re doing to make your new home where you want it to be.

This could be a new heating system, flooring, plastering or just some plumbing. Either way, it’s best to sit down and plan the costs for the labour, materials and more.

Running costs to consider

When it comes to moving home, it’s important to be well-informed and have a game plan. That’s why we’ve included this in our checklist, especially with the costs of living crisis in full swing.

We probably don’t need to mention this but, keep an eye on mortgage rates and what the economists and news presenters are saying.

Make sure to get pre-approved for a mortgage as this will help you get a better deal and speed things along, and some estate agents won’t let you get a viewing without a pre-approved mortgage or proof of funds.

Make sure you have enough money set aside in case there are any problems during the move. And last but not least, be patient – it can take up to four months for a home to be sold.

Government bodies

Before moving to a new home, it’s important to do your research and make sure you are prepared for the move. This includes knowing about current mortgage rates so that you can get an accurate estimate of what you will need to pay going forward on a monthly basis, one of the best to check is the Bank Of England base rate as this is the figure that all banks base interest rates from.

You should also speak with your bank or building society in order to find out their requirements before making a final decision or use a mortgage broker to help find the best deals you’ll be likely accepted for.

Insurance providers

When it comes to home insurance, make sure to get quotes from multiple providers. This way, you can compare and find the best deal for your needs. Likewise, comprehensive life insurance should be on your list of priorities as well. 

Some lenders insist on having home insurance as a criteria for the mortgage being issued.

Rates for these policies vary a lot according to the lender you choose so be sure to shop around before making a decision. Finally, make sure you have enough money saved up in case of an unexpected event such as losing your job or being unable to work due to illness or injury.

Utility suppliers

When it comes to moving into a new home, one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make is who your utility supplier will be. The right choice can save you money in the long run so it’s important to do your research and find a supplier that fits all your needs.

Make sure you get quotes from different providers so there are no nasty surprises when signing up – some suppliers may charge for services that aren’t actually included in their plans.

With energy bills higher than ever before it’s important to check the pros and cons of having dual tariffs or separating your suppliers for gas and electric and the difference between fixed rates and variable rates.

If you’re looking for a guide on energy and what it all means check this guide by experian.

Regular bills

Moving is an expensive proposition, and there are a few things you can do to make it more affordable. Start by creating a list of everything you’ll need – this will help reduce the number of fixed outgoings.

This can include regular direct debits from your council tax to services such as landscapers that you’ve booked for a regular appointment.

Health services

When it comes to moving home, it is important to be well-informed about the health services available in your new area. This way, you can make the most informed decision possible and avoid any unwanted surprises later on. 

Most surgeries will need a letter with a change of address or if you’re moving further afield, you can use the NHS find a GP tool.

List of organisations and companies to contact before you move

Moving home can be a long and drawn-out process, but it’s important to have a plan and timeline in place. To help you with this, we’ve compiled a list of organisations and companies you should contact before moving.

This includes your local council, energy provider(s), water company, places you bank with, royal mail and any other companies you’ve contracts or business with such as your phone lines. Make sure to ask any questions that may come up, and make a moving plan that reflects your timeline. Last but not least, be polite and friendly when contacting these companies – it’ll go a long way in making the move smoother for all.

Speak to someone who’s done it.

Moving can be daunting, but by speaking to someone else who’s already done it, you can get a head start and learn from their experience. By taking the time to think about what you need and when your moving timeline will look like, you can have a smoother move.

Be prepared for any surprises that might come up, like damaged property or last-minute repairs. And last but not least, make sure to have a list of everything you’ll need before packing your bags. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I pack for a move?

There are a few things that you’ll need to pack for a move:

  • Make sure to sort and pack the items you need to keep and bin/recycle anything that can be discarded. It’s also with keeping anything you might need more often more accessible and to the side, this will include clothing items and toiletries.
  • Label each box with the name of the item and the corresponding room in your house so everything is sorted when unpacked. 
  • Try to plan your move around your least busiest time of the year to prevent any stress or inconvenience during packing and moving.

What should I take with me when moving?

When it comes to moving, the most important thing you can do is make a packing list. A packing list will help you with making decisions about what to pack and in what order.

  • Clothing, keep what you wear and plan to wear, recycle or donate the rest.
  • Furniture and appliances, does your new home have built-in appliances or come furnished?
  • Router, check with your provider if you need to take your router or any hardware with you.
  • Check the list of what items the seller is taking with them and judge what you need from that, this should have been done prior to exchanging contracts.
  • If you want to keep items but are not sure if you have got the space you could use self-storage options like ours and sort items after the move.

What are some tips for packing efficiently?

Pack efficiently when you’re travelling by following these simple tips. 

  • Make sure to pack light and only bring the essentials with you. This will help you stay mobile and explore new places more easily.
  •  When packing, think about what can be left at home – bulky or heavy items that you cannot take with you may need to be left behind. 
  • Choose a storage space in your home where all of your belongings will be sorted and stored while you’re away – this way, everything is easier to find when you get back. 
  • If moving is necessary, try to use movers who have experience with moving large items, as they will handle them more securely and efficiently.

How can I minimize the amount of stress that comes with moving?

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to reduce stress when moving is different for everyone. 

However, some tips that may help include:

  • Organising your belongings and assigning specific boxes or bags to each item. This will help you stay organised during the move and avoid packing stress by knowing where every single item is.
  • Make a move plan, setting milestones for when specific tasks need to be completed – this will help you stay on track and avoid feeling overwhelmed or stressed out.
  • We’re biased when we say this but hire a removal company who specialises in moving homes, they’ve done it hundreds of times and no all the tricks of the trade and what to expect and it can’t hurt to have an extra couple of hands to lug all your boxes about!

We hoped this helped with your house move and gave you some insight in what to plan for, if you’re in the Milton Keynes area and are looking to move property, commercial or domestic, give us a call or drop us a message using our contact form. We make the whole process straightforward with our packing service and range of extra options, don’t believe us? Check our reviews.