Six things to do before you move

Leaving an old community can be difficult. On top of moving your possessions, selling your home, and saying goodbye to old friends, it can be hard to remember the things you need to do in order to set up the new life waiting for you in a new location. To make it easier, Elaine Chetty of Seeff Richards Bay offers a handy guide to make your move smoother.

Banks: Check your new city/town to see if your bank has a branch nearby. If not, you may need to switch banks; this is especially true if your bank is regional.

Medical needs: If you can, have your current doctor call in prescriptions to a pharmacy in your new town. This will give you time to pick out the right doctor - not just one that is available. Keep your old doctor's number so you can contact them when you need paperwork forwarded to your new doctor. Look for doctors in your new area that your Medical Aid will accept. If you need to switch providers or update your plan, try to do so before you move.

Things to transfer: Formally resign or transfer memberships from any local organisations, gyms, associations, and clubs. Be aware that cancelling before your membership has completed can result in early termination fees. Factor it into your moving costs and move on. For safekeeping, ask your children's school to make copies of all their records for you to take with you.

Raid the kitchen: About a month before moving be sure to start using up any frozen goods so that you avoid waste. Also use up, give away, or donate any unopened food in your food cupboard. These items can be bulky and heavy to transport.

Check the car: Tune up the car to avoid a breakdown on the way to your new home. If you have a trusted mechanic, ask if they can refer you to another near your new address. If it's a long road trip, pack a first-aid kit just to be safe. This should contain bandages, bug spray, sunburn spray, tissues and medications you or your family will need along the way.

Final closure for moving: Moving can be tough on the whole family. To bring a sense of closure for everyone, here are another six tips to try.  

- Visit local spots that hold dear memories. Take snapshots or a short video for keepsake purposes.
- Host your own going-away party, and encourage your children to invite their friends. This is a goodbye for everyone, including friends, neighbours, former teachers and colleagues.
- Take one last walk through the house together, noting spots you'll never want to forget.
- Take a picture of the family in front of the old house.
- Take a picture of your family in front of the new house. Display both photos side-by-side somewhere in the new place for everyone to see easily.
- If you can, make plans to visit your old home town within the first year after your move. Visit friends and drive past your old home, through neighbourhoods, and past landmarks. This post-move reconnection with dear friends and fond memories will help your family bring finality to the move, even after you've settled into your new home.

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