Tips for a Smooth(er) Moving Day in NYC

Moving in NYC! We all love it, right?


No matter how big or small your apartment may be, moving can be incredibly stressful, especially in NYC. But here are a couple of things that you can do to help make your move a LOT less stressful.

Get the Intel on Building Moving Policies

As soon as you sign your new lease, you should learn what your building’s move in policies are. This will help avoid any last minute surprises as your moving date approaches. This is especially important for elevator and doorman buildings, where they may require you to reserve an elevator in advance for your move.

Get Your Movers Lined Up

Get your moving company lined up ASAP once you have your new apartment confirmed (i.e. lease signed, condo or coop board approval issued). Don’t wait until the last minute, as movers get booked up pretty quickly. This can be a hard thing to do if you’re waiting on a lengthy board approval process. If that’s the case, then ask them what their policies are about rescheduling and see if they offer storage options.

The New York Times has a great article about how to choose a moving company and what to expect when moving into various types of buildings. Check it out HERE.

Get Your Utilities Sorted

Set up your utility services and get an appointment to have your internet and cable services installed at your new address. Don’t wait until the last minute –  during peak moving season, companies can sometimes require you to schedule an appointment anywhere from 1 to 2 weeks in advance.

And don’t forget to coordinate the shut off/cancellation of services at your old address – it’s quite a pain to remember at the last minute that you have to drop off a router!

Build in Buffer Time, If You Can Afford It

If at all practical, give yourself as much lead time for your move as possible. For renters, this may mean starting a lease a week or two earlier than your planned move-in date. It will cost extra money to do so, but might be worth it to make other aspects of moving easier (see the next section).

For buyers/sellers – you should work closely with the people on the other side of the deal to coordinate a closing and move out date. The more time you have, the more easily you can coordinate your move.

Do Apartment Improvements BEFORE You Move In

Try to paint your apartment BEFORE you move in. It’s far easier to paint an empty apartment than one filled with furniture. If you’re able to get extra lead time for your move, then it’s pretty easy to get this accomplished. 

If you’re a renter, your landlord will likely repaint the apartment prior to your move in. But you should confirm that will be the case. If it’s not, then be sure to coordinate it with your landlord.  You don’t want to interfere with whatever the landlord needs to do to prepare the apartment for your move-in. And you also don’t want to potentially violate the terms of your lease by not informing them that you’re going to repaint!

Speaking of things to do before you move into the actual apartment – per the 2019 rent law, tenants are entitled to a move-in inspection prior to taking occupancy. So be sure to take advantage of that to make sure everything is in tip top shape!

Don’t Forget the Details

As soon as you find your new apartment, figure out what you will and will not need for your new digs. Establish a realistic budget for getting new items and have a plan for getting rid of old stuff (i.e. selling it on Craigslist or eBay, donating it or having it carted away by a junk removal service). Watch out for budget busters – kitchen utensils and appliances, bathroom toiletries, home office items, etc. These things are small, but they add up quickly and can drain your wallet if you’re not prepared for them.

Don’t Be a Last Minute Packer

Try NOT to wait until the last minute to pack. Make it more manageable by packing up one room at a time per day. To avoid having to go through your boxes once you’ve packed up, leave out items that you’ll be using in the days leading up to your move or put them in one separate box.

Try using storage bins instead of cardboard boxes whenever you can. They can be reused in your new home on a regular basis for extra storage and they’re sturdier. Don’t want to keep storage bins around? You can rent them from places like Gorilla Bins orJuggle Box.


You may still have a few hiccups, even if you follow these tips. But you’ll probably have a lot less to worry about. Just be glad that New York City no longer has a city-wide Moving Day – imagine how much fun THAT would be nowadays!

And if you need help finding a new place to move to, feel free to reach out to me!😉



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