Moving into a new apartment can be exciting, especially when breaking out on your own for the first time. However, even those who have made the move before can tell you there are many things you need to remember to ensure the experience goes smoothly. Nothing ruins your first night in your new apartment like finding out you forgot to have the electricity turned on or you can’t wash away the day’s grime because you didn’t pack a shower curtain. To help you keep track of it all, here is a comprehensive apartment checklist for you to follow as you plan your move.
Apartment Checklist: Before the Move
- Schedule utilities: The moment you find out your move-in date, take the time to call any utility companies that service the area and schedule them to be turned on the day before. Many Memphis apartment complexes will include electricity and water, but you will still need to take care of other utilities, such as cable and internet. While you’re at it, this will also be a good time to consider getting renter’s insurance if you aren’t already covered.
- Complete a walk-through: Schedule a walk-through with the apartment manager. You can expect to pay for a certain amount of wear and tear when living in an apartment, but you’ll want to protect yourself when you move out from any pre-existing damages left by previous tenants. Take your time as you go through the apartment, confirm that any damage is documented, and take photos of everything that concerns you. Make sure the manager provides, and signs, a comprehensive walk-through sheet and that you receive a copy.
- Submit a change of address: Register a change of address with the local post office so all your mail will be forwarded to your new place. Some types of mail may not be eligible for forwarding. Check with the post office to find out which subscriptions you will need to contact individually to change your address. Make sure to update your information with any newspapers you receive as well.
- Learn the neighborhood: If you’re new to the area, take the time to find out the locations of all the places you may need to visit frequently. Take note of local restaurants, grocery stores, and gas stations. If your apartment doesn’t include a washer and dryer or laundry facilities, locate the nearest laundromat. It’s a good idea to know where these things are before you move in.
Apartment Checklist: What You’ll Need
You’re going to need many things to make your new place feel like home, but some items are more important than others. Go through the following list to find out if you are missing anything you might need:
- Kitchen: Dishes, cutlery, pots and pans, pot holders, measuring cups and spoons, can opener, cooking utensils, food storage containers, kitchen towels, vegetable peeler, corkscrew, baking pans, garbage can, trash bags, paper towels, ice trays.
- Bathroom: Shower curtain and rings or hooks (if needed), toilet paper, plunger, toilet scrubber, towels, trash can, toiletries.
- Bedroom: Bedding, pillows, hangers, alarm clock.
- Furniture: Bed, nightstands, dresser, dining table, chairs, couch, television stand, television, bookcase, coffee table, desk, lamps.
- Large and small appliances: Washer and dryer (if there are hookups), microwave, toaster, coffee maker, blender, kettle, hand mixer.
- Cleaning supplies: Laundry detergent, fabric softener, sponges, dish soap, broom, dust pan, mop, vacuum cleaner, laundry basket, hamper, duster, cleaning solutions (disinfectant, all-purpose cleaner, etc.).
- Other: Batteries, first aid kit, flashlight, smoke detectors (if not included), fire extinguisher, tool set, electronics (television, radio, etc.), extra blankets.
- Groceries: Take the time to pick up a few things to get you through your first couple of days. Picking up a few staples like bread, coffee, milk, butter, cereal, and lunch meat can prevent the expense of depending solely on delivery as you get settled in.
Packing and Unpacking Tips
- Organize your packing: Pack your boxes by rooms, and label everything in detail. Each box should be clearly marked with the room it belongs in and an overview of the items it contains. It’s going to require a little extra work, but you’ll be thankful you took the time when you’re trying to set up your new place. Take note of items you will need on the day you move in, such as your coffee pot or alarm clock. These items should be packed together and marked as necessities.
- Set up your bed: It can be easy to get lost in unpacking your boxes and setting up your new apartment. You may lose track of time and realize you’ve run out of daylight and you’re exhausted. The last thing you’ll want to do at this moment is put your bed together. Before you unpack a single box, set up your bed and anything you’ll need to get a good night’s sleep. You’ll be thankful you did when you end your busy day by crawling between the sheets in your comfortable bed rather than crashing on the couch.
- Unpack necessities first: Remember those boxes you marked as necessities? Unpack those first. Having immediate access to necessary items will allow you to unpack the rest of your boxes at your leisure. This reduces your level of move-in day stress and gives you the opportunity to focus on setting up your space to make it uniquely yours.
Moving day can be exhausting and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. A little planning and organization can go a long way toward eliminating the stress of the move so you can enjoy the excitement of living in an apartment of your own. Using this apartment checklist will ensure you cover all your bases, help the moving process run smoothly, and give you peace of mind that you haven’t forgotten anything important. Avoid scrambling to turn on utilities at the last minute, or waking up to a caffeine-free morning, and instead focus on all the little things that will turn your new apartment into your new home.