How to move house in 2023

Moving house should be an exciting time, so take the stress out of the process with our moving house in 2023 guide.

Once you’ve found your dream house and had an offer accepted, it’s time to start planning your move. Here’s everything you’ll need to do for a stress-free move.

Moving house checklist

Our checklist for moving house will help you understand the process and how to make moving as straightforward as possible.

The seller has accepted your offer and moving day is on the horizon. Hurrah!

You'll need to get a solicitor or conveyancer to handle the legal side of things.

And remember to organise a survey so you'll know if there are any issues with the property.

Your moving date will depend on a number of things.

These include:

  • what stage the seller is at

  • what stage your buyer is at

This is often referred to as the ‘chain’.

Make sure you have buildings insurance as soon as you exchange contracts. Take out contents insurance too if you want cover for your things.

Once you have a moving date, tell your landlord if you’re renting.

Check to see if your contents insurance will cover your things during the move. Your removals company might have cover for them.

Book time off work for the move and arrange a school transfer if you have kids.

With just over a month until moving day, it’s time to start planning ahead.

Research removal companies to find the best quote and book ahead if possible.

Make lists of the things you want to keep, sell or give away.

Check your buildings and contents insurance and think about taking out life insurance.

Taking out life insurance might be a condition of your mortgage.

Look into the parking situation at your current and new home as you may need to arrange permits for your removal van.

You’ve probably exchanged contracts at this point and know your moving date.

Start packing things you will not need in the next few weeks and confirm your booking with the removals company.

Research deals to keep costs down in your new home. These include:

  • TV

  • phone

  • broadband

  • gas

  • electricty

Tell your current utility and internet companies that you're moving.

Find storage if you need it and consider giving things you do not need to charity.

Order anything you might need immediately in your new home such as curtains or a washing machine.

Let people know your new address and the date you'll be moving in. Make sure you tell:

  • TV Licensing

  • your bank

  • your insurers

  • your pension providers

Ask your removals company if they'll disconnect your washing machine and take your bed and sofa apart, if possible.

If not, you can make your own plans.

Remember you'll need to clean your house before you leave or arrange for it to be done.

Redirect your post with Royal Mail and cancel things like window cleaning.

Tuck into anything in the freezer that you do not want to take with you.

With just a week left to go, it’s time to plan your moving day ‘survival kit’. These are things you'll need to hand.

They include:

  • important documents

  • keys

  • mobile phone charger

  • any medication you take

Pack an overnight bag as you may not be able to find everything you need immediately.

Register to start paying Council Tax at your new home when you move in.

Organise a time to pick up the keys from the estate agent.

Tomorrow's the big day.

Check that everything’s packed up and ready to go.

Make sure your overnight bag has everything you’ll need the following day and evening.

This could include:

  • water

  • snacks

  • something to open boxes with

When everything’s ready, try to get a good night’s sleep so you’re fresh as a daisy for moving day.

It’s time!

Before you leave your old place make sure that you:

  • take a note or photo of the meter readings

  • lock all the doors and windows

  • turn off the heating and lights

When you arrive at your new home make sure you:

  • check everything is as it should be

  • look to see if there's anything in house and garden that could harm your children or pets

  • unpack your overnight bag and unwind in your new space

You’ve moved house – congratulations!

You’ll probably need to unpack before you feel really at home.

Some people like to get everything done in one go, but do give yourself time.

If there's a lot to do just spend 1 or 2 hours a day unpacking. You could ask for help from friends and family if you need it.

Then put the kettle on, put your feet up and start arranging the housewarming party! (Cream carpets permitting...)

How much does it cost to move house?

The cost of moving house can be high, and that’s not even including your deposit or mortgage.

There are some big upfront costs you’ll need to factor in, including:

  • Stamp duty

  • Solicitors fees for buying a house

  • Mortgage fees

You can see a full breakdown of these costs in our buying a house in 2023 guide.

The process of moving itself isn’t cheap, and there are several costs you will need to budget for.

We asked people aged 18 to 34 around the country where they would most like to move to.

Here's their top 10:

  1. London

  2. Lake District

  3. Yorkshire

  4. Cornwall

  5. Greater Manchester

  6. Devon

  7. Kent

  8. Northern Ireland

  9. Peak District

  10. Dorset

We asked people aged 35 to 54 around the country where they would most like to move to.

Here's their top 10:

  1. Cornwall

  2. Devon

  3. Lake District

  4. Yorkshire

  5. Peak District

  6. Scotland

  7. Dorset

  8. Wales

  9. Kent

  10. Norfolk

We asked people aged 55 and over around the country where they would most like to move to.

Here's their top 10:

  1. Cornwall

  2. Devon

  3. Dorset

  4. Yorkshire

  5. Lake District

  6. Scotland

  7. Wales

  8. Norfolk

  9. Peak District

  10. Sussex

How long does it take to move house?

Moving house, from putting your house on the market to moving into your new home, typically takes between three and six months. 

This can be longer if you're in a long chain, but it’s unlikely you’ll be able to move in less than three months, especially if you are selling your house at the same time. 

The process of moving after exchange of contracts is usually a few days or weeks at most. When you exchange contracts, you will agree on a completion date with sellers, which could even be the same day if you’re both eager to move as soon as possible.

However, you usually want a few days or a week to make moving arrangements, like booking a removal company and packing. Here’s a quick moving house timeline:

  • 1 month before move: Start packing

  • 1 week before move: Exchange contracts and agree on a completion date

  • 1 week before move: Arrange removal company

  • 2 days before move: Settle bills and update your records

  • 1 day before move: Finish packing

  • Moving day: Collect keys and move into your new home

Porting your mortgage when you move

When you port your mortgage you move your current mortgage to your new home. You'll stay with the same lender, and your mortgage deal stays the same.

You may need to borrow more if you’re buying a more expensive home. Most lenders will want to check that you can still afford your mortgage, especially if you want to increase the size of your loan. 

Porting your mortgage could save you money as you won’t need to pay early repayment charges or arrangement fees for setting up a new mortgage.

Not all mortgage products can be ported to a new property, so talk to your lender first to know where you stand. 

Porting your mortgage could be a good idea if you:

  • Took out a fixed-rate mortgage when interest rates were much lower

  • Have a fixed-rate mortgage and you’d have to pay early repayment charges to pay it off

Moving house FAQs

When you port your mortgage you move your current mortgage to your new home.

You'll stay with the same lender and your mortgage deal stays the same too.

If you’re buying a more expensive home, and need to borrow more, you could take out another mortgage.

You’ll probably have to use the same lender.

You could save money by porting your mortgage.

You would not have to pay:

  • early repayment charges on your current mortgage

  • fees for setting up a new mortgage

If you’re on a great deal you get to keep it.

Porting your mortgage could be a good idea if you:

  • took out a fixed-rate mortgage when interest rates were much lower

  • have a fixed-rate mortgage and you’d have to pay early repayment charges to end it

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Important info & marketing claims

You may have to pay an early repayment charge to your existing lender if you remortgage. Your savings will depend on personal circumstances.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

*The savings figure of £506 is based on Better.co.uk remortgage customers in December 2023. Read more on our marketing claims page.

We can't always guarantee we will be able to help you with your mortgage application depending on your credit history and circumstances.

Average mortgage decision and approval times are based on Better.co.uk's historic data for lenders we submit applications to.

Tracker rates are identified after comparing over 12,000 mortgage products from over 100 mortgage lenders.

As of January 2023, Better.co.uk has access to over 100 lenders. This number is subject to change.

For buy-to-let landlords, there's no guarantee that it will be possible to arrange continuous letting of a property, nor that rental income will be sufficient to meet the cost of the mortgage.