Good news! Your offer on that dream house has been accepted and you're all set to move in. And now the bad news: you're going to have to organise moving house.
Sure, it's an exciting time, and the last thing we want to do is rain on your parade. But it's also a very stressful time, which means it pays to be realistic about the logistical challenges ahead. In fact, research shows that people consider moving house to be more stressful than going through a divorce, having a baby, or starting a new job.
But enough of the pessimism and negativity. Let's focus instead on the steps you can take to move your white goods safely and help make the big day go smoothly.
Take a stock check of the food in your fridge-freezer in the days and weeks leading up to your move, and plan your meals to use up as many ingredients as you can. If you own a smart fridge, it can even give you recipe hints and tips to ensure you make the most of every last spring onion and green bean. Here's why you don't want to be taking any food with you, no matter how close your new home is:
- Firstly, you need to fully defrost your appliance before you move. Dirty, dripping water and ice is a safety hazard, which will endanger your removal team as well as cause damage to your other possessions in the truck.
- Secondly, it's one less job to do when you get into your new home at the end of a long day - and one that you won't want to do after getting the keys to your sparkling new palace! Why take a smelly fridge into a clean home and have to clean it, especially while all those boxes are left waiting to be unpacked?
- And thirdly, you'll probably need to let your fridge stand for a day or so before you switch it back on. Many manufacturers advise you wait 24 hours until the cooling liquid has resettled in your fridge-freezer before it's safe to use.
To defrost your fridge-freezer ready for relocation simply remove any remaining food, leave the door open, and place old towels around the floor. While it's tempting to chip away at any ice, doing so can cause damage. Once the appliance has defrosted, wash the drawers and compartments in warm soapy water, and you're good to go.
Moving washing machines and dishwashers
Unless you're very confident with your plumbing skills, we recommend asking an expert to disconnect your washing machine or dishwasher at your old house, and subsequently reconnect them in your new home. Your removal company may be able to do this for you too, but it's best to check and verify their capabilities. They might try and be helpful but actually do more harm than good.
As with your fridge-freezer, start by making sure the basics are covered. Empty the washing machine of all clothes, and take the opportunity to give the drum a good clean. Moving dirty goods into a clean environment is never a good idea. Then leave the door open and allow the drum to dry overnight.
For safety reasons you should disconnect the power supply from the mains, before turning off the water supply valve. This is usually found behind the machine, and a clockwise twist will do the job.
The next task is to disconnect the water hose (or hoses, depending on your model). Grab an empty bucket and have it handy before you start, as you’ll need somewhere to put any water that has collected in the hose. Now disconnect the supply hose from the valve, remembering to hold the hose upright to prevent any spillage. Then pour any residual water into the bucket, before taping the empty hose to the machine for safekeeping.
Your machine should have shipping bolts that hold the drum in place while it’s in transit. Check your manual to determine exactly where they are and how to insert them, but you’ll typically need to place these bolts into the back of the machine.
Washing machines are heavy, cumbersome appliances, so we recommend you never attempt to move it on your own. Ask for help, or hire a removal team to take care of this for you. Either way, your machine should be wrapped in furniture blankets to protect it while in transit. And, as with your fridge-freezer, keep it upright at all times.
When you're installing your washing machine in your new home, don't forget to adjust the legs as needed to ensure it's balanced and won't move when you next use it. You can find more tips and advice like this in our special blog dedicated to helping you extend the lifetime of your washing machine.
There’s some very specific advice here, but the main thing to remember is to get the help you need, plan early, and don’t stress! Try to make the move into your new home a day to remember fondly, rather than a day you’d rather forget.