Guide for Moving Into Your Chicago Apartment
Moving into a new apartment in the city can be a stressful event for anyone. But, we’re not just talking about any city. We’re talking about Chicago, the third-largest city in the U.S.
Moving doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it seems. All you need is a little guidance to help you plan the perfect move. But, before we share our guide for moving into your new Chicago apartment, you first have to find the right apartment, right?
Finding the Perfect Chicago City Apartment for You
The Chicago apartment market is wide and varied. There’s something for everyone. But, there a few things to consider in your search for the perfect Windy City apartment.
- Location – Location is key and knowing where you need to be will help you make the smartest move for you. It’ll also help you narrow your search.
- Is the apartment located in a safe area?
- Is it in proximity to the places you frequent most often?
- Is it conveniently located near your workplace for an easy commute?
- Individual Needs – Make a list of what you’re looking for. Priority your needs over the things you consider to be less important.
- What are the things you can’t live without? For instance, if you have a car, is there accessible parking? If you rely on public transportation, is it available nearby?
- Do you have your own appliances? If not, does the apartment you’re considering have any? Can you afford to buy your own?
- When narrowing your search, which one best meets your needs and desires?
- Neighborhood – Visit the apartment you’re considering at different times to get a good idea of what the neighbors are like.
- Determine if noise is a factor. If you work nights and there’s too much noise during the day, you may want to keep that apartment off your list.
- Are most of the other tenants settled, elderly, family-oriented, or college kids that may want to party all the time?
- Ask around to learn more about the apartment environment.
The above criteria can help you find the best apartment for you. Once you find your new Chicago apartment, the next step is the actual move. But, not so fast. You’ll need to plan ahead to make your move as stress-free as possible.
Here’s our guide for moving into your new Chicago apartment:
A month before your move:
- Find a couple of friends to commit to helping you move out or hire a moving company. Settle on a moving date and stick to it. In the meantime, gather the boxes you’ll need to pack.
- Declutter and get rid of items you no longer want to keep.
- Notify your bank, your workplace’s HR department, local DMV, credit card companies, and the post office. Give your utility providers a transfer date to transfer services.
- Start packing the things you don’t use often. On the sides of each box, label it with the room it should go in.
Two weeks before your move:
- Use as much of your groceries as possible. Try not to shop for new groceries so you don’t have to move as much.
- Meet any requirements your new apartment lease has. For instance, if you’re required to have renter’s insurance, get it before moving in.
- Continue packing everything (except for everyday essentials). Pack breakables by wrapping them with packing paper, newspaper, sheets, or towels.
- Place valuable items like jewelry or sentimental items in a separate box that stays close to you during moving day.
- Have a box for essentials that are clearly labeled so you’re not hunting for it once you move into your new apartment. This includes toilet paper, toothbrushes, toothpaste, phone charger, a couple of changes of clothes, etc.
- Hire a cleaning service to clean out your old apartment so you can get your deposit back. You’ll be too busy moving into your new place to worry about this.
The week of your move:
- Confirm everything with your new apartment manager, moving company, friends who’ve committed to help you move, etc.
- Pack up anything that hasn’t been packed.
- Don’t water plants for two days before your move so they don’t leak water when moving them.
- If you own your own refrigerator, empty and clean it for the move.
- You’ll probably want to give your new apartment a good cleaning. While your new apartment should be spic and span clean, the truth is you just don’t know. You may want to consider hiring a cleaning agency to give it a good cleaning. At a bare minimum, clean the floors well since they were probably walked on a lot during apartment showings. Then you can tackle the rest as you can.
- Take pictures of your old place to prove that it’s clean and ready for its new tenant (so your previous landlord returns your deposit). Take pictures of your new place, documenting any issues.
- Go to your new apartment and make sure there’s a clear path for unloading your belongings.
- Once everything’s moved out of your apartment, do a final walk-through to make sure nothing’s been left behind. Make sure all doors and windows are locked and closed, then turn in your keys.
- If you hire a moving company, make sure they’ve put all the boxes in their correct rooms and that your belongings are undamaged.
- Buy pizza for any friends who helped you move as a way of thanking them.
- Once your stuff is at your new apartment, unpack your essentials and get your bed made up so you can have a good night’s sleep.
- Have the apartment manager show you where utility hookups and shut-offs are in case of an emergency.
Moving into your new apartment in the city of Chicago is an easier feat when you go through these easy steps. Enjoy your new apartment.