Guide to Transferring your Utilities when Moving to a New Home

With all the costs of moving, why should you have to spend the time disconnecting services, only to pay more money to reconnect them? Because that’s how it is.

Or is it?

Utilities, such as garbage and sewer, electricity, internet and cable can be transferred, rather than disconnected, if you’re moving within the same geographical location. This could save you a chunk of money in fees. Sounds great, doesn’t it? All you have to do is coordinate your move, and we’re here to show you exactly how to do that.

Step #1: Make Your List

Gather all the information you need in one place, because you’ll have a few phone calls to make. This information will include your current address, the address you’re moving to and all the utility companies you’ll be contacting on both ends. Make sure you also have the confirmed dates of when you’ll be moving.

Step #2: Organize the Information

List the phone numbers. You don’t want to frustrate yourself by calling the wrong people. I prefer to draw a line down the sheet and have the “moving from” and “moving too” column—because the numbers are not always the same.

Step #3: Set the Move out Date

Call up each of the utility companies and set your move out date. It’s best to arrange to have the water and lights on for two, maybe three additional days after you’ve left the home. This gives you the option to come back if you’ve forgotten something, or if you plan on doing a final cleaning and walk through. You don’t want to be stuck in the dark or be forced to go to the gas station to use the toilet. If the money bothers you, just know a couple days won’t cost much and you can always ask the utility company if they’ll prorate the charges, to avoid paying for a new billing cycle.

Step #4: Set the Move in Date

Now call the companies you’ll be using at the new address. It’s best to call them two weeks before you arrive; it gives them time to schedule a worker to come to the location. Leaving it until the last minute may leave you in a load of discomfort. Provide them with the move in dates, but this time, ask them for the utilities to be turned on two days before you get there. You want to make certain you have what you need when you arrive.

Step #5: Be Prepared For Possible Deposits

You might have to pay a deposit for the new utilities, so brace yourself for that and include it in your budget. This could even happen if it’s the same company providing service on both ends. However, if this is the case, ask them about it; they may work something out for you, such as waving the fees or adding the deposit to monthly statements over time.

Step #6: Prepare Yourself to Have Gas

When it comes to gas hookups, you may have to meet the service worker at your new home to have it initially turned on. Oftentimes it’s required to go into the home and check the pilot light after the gas has been turned on. This is for your safety. Because an exact time is near impossible for the utility company to schedule, block out a four to six hour window and make yourself available. Make the most of your time and bring some boxes to unpack.

Step #7: Record Your Tracks

When all your belongings are out of the house, record both the water and electricity meter a final time. In fact, it’s a great idea to take pictures or make a small cell phone movie of it. These things serve as a record, just in case you find the final bill out of the ordinary. I actually received the regular bill two months later for the water and sewer. I had moved more than an hour away, yet the bill said the utilities were still going, in my name and a new family had moved in! Luckily, I lived in a small town and had requested the city to send me a confirmation email as to my moving dates, which had the water/sewer shut off dates on it. I was released from the responsibility, but be prepared, it does happen.

What tips do you have for transferring utilities when moving? Did we miss anything?

Author Bio: Dwayne Thomas works for Cable TV. He welcomes your feedback on Twitter @DwayneThomas15.

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