If you're planning to move in the near future, you're likely preparing for a change of address in addition to the more obvious parts of moving. Once you've collected all of the boxes and packing supplies, and contacted a long-distance moving company, don't forget to officially change your address so you continue to get your mail.
This is an important step that often gets overlooked in the moving process, and it's always better to initiate your official change of address sooner than later. The last thing you want is to let a bill slip through the cracks which results in services being turned off. We've outlined some helpful tips to make the process easier.
ADDRESS FORM AND OTHER DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR THE CHANGE OF ADDRESS
Whether you are moving locally or you're planning a move across the country, certain documents are required to complete your change of address request. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed by all of the different companies that you need to contact, but you can compile the right documents and information so the address change is a smooth process.
Here are some points of information to collect:
- Your new postal address is properly spelled and 100% accurate.
- Account numbers for utility companies, medical providers, streaming services, credit card companies, etc.
- Passwords for online accounts make it easy to change your account details ahead of time, so make sure that you can access all of your accounts.
- If you expect to change your phone number, make sure that the new number is available and updated as soon as possible.
- Make sure to update your billing address for your online accounts.
NOTIFY GOVERNMENT AGENCIES ABOUT YOUR NEW ADDRESS
When moving to a new address, make sure to contact government agencies with plenty of notice. These types of things can take some additional time for the government to implement so it's better to take action sooner than later. Here are some specific agencies that you should contact before you move.
If you're wondering “where to change my address”, the United States Postal Service is a good place to start. They make it easy to change your address online. There are two different options to let this government entity know that you're moving: online and at your local post office.
For the online option, you can go to usps.com/move to change your old address and forward mail. This is the fastest and easiest way to implement mail forwarding. As soon as you're finished, you'll get an email that confirms the change. There is a $1.10 charge to change your address, so make sure that you have a credit or debit card with a valid email address. You can also visit your local post office and fill out the Mover's Guide packet and give it to a worker behind the counter.
Similar to USPS, you can also change your address online for the DMV. In any state, you'll be required to submit your change of address forms before you can settle in as a resident of your new address. This means you'll need to update the address on your driver's license in addition to updating your vehicle's registration documents. In the case that you're moving states altogether, you will need to get a new state license.
As a best practice, before you move to a new address, you'll want to take care of the paperwork as early as possible. You can do this online or by visiting your local DMV. Make sure to bring the necessary documents to make the change official such as proof of name and date of birth, proof of current residency, proof of social security, etc.
Changing your address with the IRS helps ensure that you receive the right tax refunds. If you change your address before you file taxes, the IRS will update its records for the same address. You can also submit a change of address using Form 8822 or Form 8822-B. Feel free to submit this request to the IRS by phone or in writing as well.
Many people get Social Security benefits which require them to update their address ahead of time. If you don't already have an account created, you'll want to do so at this time. Log into your online Social Security account and click “My Profile”. Select “update contact information” to enter the details of your new address.
One of the most vital parts of the change of address process is updating your voter registration information. Don't forget to update your voter registration so you're eligible to vote in your new location! You can do so online, by mail, or in person. To update your voter registration address, the easiest way is to visit USA.gov and click on “Register and Vote in Your State” and follow their steps.
NOTIFY THE FINANCIAL SERVICES
How to change your address when you move also includes notifying all financial services that you use. Here is some change of address tips for your financial services.
Your bank and your credit card company will need to know about your new address so they are able to send you information about your account, statements, and new credit or debit cards. It's typically easy to do this by updating your profile on your online account, however, you can also call your bank directly and let them know that you have a new address. There may be other loyalty programs or credit cards that you have with specific stores; don't forget to update these as well.
Although you might be hopeful that loans such as student loans won't follow you to your new address, it's important that you alert the loan providers that you've moved so they have an updated mailing and billing address. In most cases, this involves going to the website of your loan provider and simply updating your mailing address. If you don't have an online account or you're having a difficult time locating where to change your address online, you can also call your provider's customer service number and seek assistance in changing your address.
Insurance is another factor to consider when changing your address and you'll want to get in touch with all of your providers ahead of time. Examples of insurance providers that you should contact include your health insurance provider, dental insurance provider, car insurance provider, and life insurance provider.
In most cases, you'll be able to do this online, but you can always get in contact with a customer service representative to update your address as well. In the case that you have insurance through the federal marketplace, you can go to Healthcare.gov and follow the directions on their website.
NOTIFY THE UTILITIES
Don't forget to inform your change of address with your utility companies as well! You don't want a bill to slip through the cracks.
ELECTRIC AND GAS
As soon as you know what your new address will be and the date that you'll be moving, you'll want to coordinate with your gas and electric companies to update your address. If you wait too long, you risk having a day (or multiple) when you don't have heat or electricity. In some cases, you might be able to simply transfer your services from one address to another, so make sure that you arrange to shut off services at your current location for the day that you move.
On the same note, you'll want to arrange for your new electric and gas services to start at your new address on the day that you move in. This allows you to ensure there will be lights on while you are unloading your boxes!
PHONE AND INTERNET
You could also transfer your phone and internet services between addresses, but this isn't always possible if you're moving a long distance. Once you have a better idea of whether you need to terminate your services altogether or simply transfer them, you'll be able to move forward with the official change of address.
You can also lean on your realtor, property manager, or landlord for assistance with your phone and internet address updates. Depending on the specific provider, you'll likely be able to initiate, terminate, or change services directly online, but you can always give them a call directly to make the change.
Depending on any other utilities for which you're responsible at your new residence, you should also coordinate with the water department, sewer utility company, and your garbage and/or recycling company.
If you are renting at your new address, you can work with your property manager and the landlord to better understand which utilities you'll need to cover. If you purchased a property, your realtor can help you determine which accounts to set up. As soon as you have an understanding of other utilities to factor in, you can initiate, terminate, or transfer these services to your new address.
NOTIFY THE IMPORTANT PEOPLE
Beyond taking the above steps, you'll also want to get in touch with important people or companies to let them know about your official change of address. Here is some change of address tips you might not have considered:
- Employer: Make sure to let your employer know what your new address is for their records and other legal needs.
- Doctors, dentists, and lawyers: Let the people who serve you update your billing address so all payments go through without a hitch.
- Veterinarian: Don't forget about your fur babies! Let the vet know what your new address is and make sure to update the address on the microchip registry.
You can also send out a mass email to your contacts and BCC everyone with your new address.
If you're planning for an upcoming move, you can cut down on your stress by planning ahead of time as much as possible. Moving to a new address is less stressful when you plan correctly and hire a professional moving company to help you every step of the way. If you're interested in learning more about our services or want to get a moving quote, get in touch with our team at Alliance Moving & Storage today.