Moving Out of State: 10 To-Dos to Cross Off Your List

Moving to a new state is a fun and exhilarating experience. But, you may hit constant roadblocks if you are not prepared. The best way to prepare for a big move to a new state is to use a moving states checklist. Checklists keep you on track and ensure you don't cut corners or forget any essential tasks. Fortunately, our moving out-of-state checklist provides you with helpful advice and tips to make your out-of-state move easier. We're here to guide you through how to use a checklist for moving out-of-state and provide expert recommendations to help you plan and prepare for the journey ahead. Here’s how to get started.

What is Your Moving Budget?

Before you pack up your bags and make the move, you must have a set moving budget. This will ensure you have the funds needed for your pre-planned costs. Consider how much you're willing to spend on moving supplies, moving company, and traveling to your new destination. You’ll also want to have a small budget for unexpected expenditures. 

Best Moving Out-of-State Mover

Hiring an out-of-state mover may cost more upfront, but it can help you save on the overall cost in the long run. The quote you receive will include the cost of the movers, the moving truck, gas, and more.

Check State Cost of Living

Next, you'll need to consider the cost of living in your new state compared to your current state. Is it more expensive? Are everyday utilities and essentials more affordable? Knowing these things ahead of time will help you revise your current everyday budget accordingly. 

We recommend also reviewing our 2023 Moving Migration Report to understand what's driving population shifts and changes in the United States. 

Research Your New State & Community

The next step on your moving out-of-state checklist is to learn more about your new community. Here's how to get started: 

  • Join a neighborhood social media group
  • Set your weather on the weather app
  • Look up the walking distance scores
  • Look into community events in your new area
  • Switch your medical providers and health 

Find the Best Out of State Moving Company

One of the more crucial things to add to the top of your out-of-state moving checklist is "compare moving company quotes." It's best to compare prices at least two to three months in advance to find the best moving services and costs that align with your needs.

At North American Van Lines®, all our moving services are affordable and customizable. You only pay for what you need and never have to worry about hidden fees or excessive charges.

Order Moving Supplies

If you aren't hiring a full-service mover or packing service, thoughtfully pack all of your items, especially the fragile and valuable ones, because they are in for a long journey, and anything can happen. Get all the supplies, like packing paper, bubble wrap, packing tape, and any other packing materials you think you need to pack up your household. The better quality of your packing materials, the better chances your items have of surviving the move.

Declutter Before You Pack

Moving is an opportunity to get rid of all the useless items you may have been lugging around for years. Any household items or furniture you do not want are not worth taking with you. Unwanted items add expenses to your overall moving cost and are not worth taking.

Trim down your possessions and only take what you want. Take your unwanted possessions to a donation center for a tax credit, or sell them on a second-hand marketplace for extra cash to help with the move.

Utilize Your Moving Checklist

Start planning every facet of your move, from everything, including the cost of professional movers and rental trucks to packing supplies and their prices.

The more you list out on your out-of-state moving checklist, the more prepared you’ll be and the fewer unforeseen problems you have to anticipate. Take this time to form a cohesive moving plan, start gathering packing supplies, and discuss the move with your family and loved ones.


Keep valuable items like family heirlooms, fragile keepsakes, and prescription medication with you at all times. These items cannot be lost and should not go on the moving truck. Make sure these items stay with you in safely packed and looked after containers.

Consider also creating an essentials box to store all of your vital documents, like tax forms, driver's licenses, vehicle titles, registration, immunization records, and any other critical documents. This is a must for any out-of-state move. An essentials box can also store social security cards, birth certificates, liability insurance documents, and tax forms.


Don't forget to transfer those utilities before moving into your new house! You'll need them when you move in, and you won't want to be stuck without power or internet after you've moved in. So make sure you get everything set up before you move in.

An often-forgotten tip: make sure you update your homeowner's insurance & auto insurance policies as well!

Confirm Your Details

One of the last things on your moving out-of-state checklist is to confirm the details of your new place. Your new mailing address affects more than just your zip code. It also reflects a change in your taxes, and if you are moving to an area like Arizona or Washington, you may no longer pay income taxes. 

But you will still pay federal U.S. taxes. If you move halfway through the year, plan on paying taxes for both states you lived in throughout the year.

Wave Goodbye to Your Old Home

A great way to ensure you checked everything off your moving out-of-state checklist is to throw a house cooling party. A house cooling party is a small celebration where your friends and loved ones come over one last time to help pack up your home. It's also a great time to say your final farewells and relax before you begin your next journey.

Need help with your moving to a new state checklist? Request a free no-obligation quote from North American Van Lines today!