Moving is a stressful undertaking, with various admin tasks that can sometimes be overwhelming and easily overlooked. One of these is to consider who to inform that your address is changing. It may not seem like a large task, but there are a lot more places that need to know you are moving than you might think.
With this comprehensive change of address checklist, you can make the moving process just a little easier and less stressful.
Change of address checklist
- Friends and family
- Clubs or organizations you belong to
- Online shopping profiles
- Subscription services
- Your household insurance providers
- Loan providers
- Your bank and credit card company (if they aren’t the same)
- Retail credit accounts
- Your accountant or tax accountant
- Your employer
- The Post Office
- The DMV
- The IRS
- Social Security
- Voter registration
- Utility providers, such as gas, electricity, and water
- Cable, internet, and phone service providers
- Your health insurance
- Your car insurance
- Your veterinarian
- Streaming services
The Post Office
Notifying the post office of your change of address can be done online and relatively quickly. This should be done at least one week before moving to ensure there are no gaps between your move and mail forwarding. Click here to go to the change of address page for the US Post Office. You’ll be charged a minimal fee of $1.10 to verify your identity.
Alternatively, your address can be changed by getting a mover’s guide pack from the post office, which includes a change of address form and coupons for moving-related services and products. This option is free of charge but takes significantly longer than the online change of address option.
It is important to ensure that you complete the change of address correctly at the post office. For example, if there are multiple people moving with you with the same last name, you will need to select ‘entire family.’ Alternatively, if different surnames are involved, a separate form for each surname will need to be completed.
Social Security Administration
If you are someone who receives benefits from social security, the agency should be notified of your move. This can be easily done through your online SSA profile, or by calling your closest SSA office.
The IRS must know about your move to ensure that your tax information remains as updated as possible. This can be simply done by completing and filing an 8822 form.
Any kind of move (regardless of whether you are changing states) needs to be communicated to the DMV within 30 days of your move.
If you are moving to a different state, then you will have to register your vehicle in your new state.
When election time comes, you won’t be able to vote in your newly designated district if your address is not updated on the voter’s roll. Updating your address also ensures that you can be allocated the correct polling station on election day.
Electric and Gas Utilities
Notifying your gas and electric utility providers is arguably the most important and should be done as soon as you know your moving date and new address. If you are unsure of your new utility providers, your property manager or realtor should be able to help you.
Ideally, shut-off of your utilities at your old residence should occur at the end of the moving day, and services should be on at your new property the evening before, to ensure that you arrive at your new property with functioning utilities, and don’t have to move around in the dark.
Utilities such as your sewer utility company, the water department, and your garbage collection and recycling company also need to be notified of your move. As with your electric and gas utilities, you should notify your water and sewer services well in advance of your move, to ensure no interruption of services at your new residence and continuation of service at your old residence.
Internet, phone, and cable
With regards to your internet, phone, and cable, it is important to find out if you are able to transfer your services to your new address, or if you have to terminate your services at your old address and reinstate them at your new address. In this case, it is helpful to know who your provider will be so that you can make the necessary arrangements over the phone or online.
Banks, loan issuers, and credit card companies
For all three of these, you’ll want to be sure that you don’t miss a statement or other type of important notice, so you will want to update your address with your bank, loan issuer, and credit card company.
This includes your health insurance, dental insurance, life insurance, car insurance, and homeowner (or renter’s) insurance. Informing them of a change of address will ensure that you are covered in your new location, whether it is a new city or a new state.
Specifically, with car insurance, you’ll want to confirm that you don’t need to modify your coverage based on your new location, and parking spot. Additionally, some states require liability insurance, whilst others do not – so it is always important to check.
Finally, the homeowner’s or renter’s insurance needs to be notified, as the correct home needs to be insured. Additionally, your new home may have additions that need to be mentioned to your insurance to ensure that you are fully covered.
Something to ask your insurers when you move is whether they cover your goods whilst they are in transit during your move. If this is not the case, you may want to look into moving insurance in order to protect your possessions during your move.
Personal and animal care
It is important to let people like your employer, doctor, dentist, and lawyer know about your change of address so that bills come through to the correct location and you don’t miss any important notices.
Additionally, it is important to let your veterinarian know of your move. If your pet is microchipped, ensure that you update the information on the microchip to your new address, so that if your pet is found, it is returned to the correct address.
General tips for change of address
Here are some general tips to follow when undergoing the task of changing your address.
- Try to take care of multiple changes at a single time. For example, a single trip to the DMV can accomplish a change of address for your driver’s license, vehicle registration, voter registration, and passport.
- Try to make as many changes as you can online – this stops you from having to make many trips to various institutions.
- Make sure you have all the correct forms and information with you when visiting anywhere you need to change your address, to avoid having to go backward and forward to get the correct information.