What to Do When Moving Out of Apartment: Essential Steps

Published: 12 Apr, 2023

Last Updated: 19 Apr, 2023

Serik Baimoldayev

Serik Baimoldayev

Moving out of an apartment can be a daunting task, especially when considering all the steps involved in the process. This guide will provide an in-depth look at the steps needed to make a successful move out of an apartment, from locating a new residence and providing notice to gathering packing materials and cleaning up.

From finding a new place to move and giving required notice, to gathering moving supplies and packing your belongings, we have got you covered. Additionally, we will discuss fixing any damages in your current apartment and cleaning it thoroughly before vacating.

Furthermore, scheduling a pre-move-out inspection with your landlord is essential as well as disconnecting or transferring utilities. Lastly, we will touch upon returning keys and important documents related to your lease agreement. With these helpful tips at hand, navigating what to do when moving out of an apartment becomes significantly easier.

Table of Contents:

1. Find a Place to Move

Before you begin the relocation process, it’s vital to have a new abode identified where everyone in your family can settle comfortably. Whether you’re upgrading to a larger home or relocating for work, finding the perfect space that caters to all members of your household, including children and pets, is crucial.

To make this transition as smooth as possible, consider these factors when searching for your next residence:

  • Location: Choose an area with easy access to schools, parks, shopping centers and other amenities that cater to both adults and kids.
  • Pet-friendly accommodations: Ensure that the new property allows pets or has pet-friendly features such as fenced yards or nearby dog parks. You can find pet-friendly listings on websites like Apartments.com.
  • Safety: Research crime rates in potential neighborhoods using resources like NeighborhoodScout, ensuring a secure environment for your family.
  • Budget considerations: Factor in costs such as rent/mortgage payments, utility bills and any additional fees (e.g., homeowners’ association dues) when determining if a property fits within your budget.

If you need temporary storage solutions during this transition period before settling into your new home completely – especially if downsizing – consider utilizing services from reputable moving companies like SEKA Moving who offer convenient storage options alongside their moving assistance packages.

Investigate the locality extensively and examine all potential choices when looking for a new residence. Once you have found the perfect new home, it is important to give required notice before moving out of your apartment.

2. Give Required Notice

Moving out of your apartment can be a hectic process, but it’s essential to remember the legal aspects as well. One crucial step is giving your landlord the required notice that you’re moving out. This ensures a smooth transition and helps avoid any potential conflicts or penalties.

Before leaving, be sure to review your lease agreement for details on the required notice period. It should contain specific information about how much notice you need to provide before vacating the premises. Typically, the required notice period may differ based on your location and individual situation; it could be anything from 30 to 60 days.

  1. Check local laws: In addition to reviewing your lease agreement, make sure you understand any applicable local laws regarding tenant rights and responsibilities when moving out of an apartment.
  2. Put it in writing: Once you know how much notice is required by both your lease agreement and local law, draft a written letter informing your landlord of your intent to move out within the specified timeframe. Be sure to include relevant details, such as date of departure and forwarding address for future correspondence.
  3. Keep records: After sending the letter via certified mail or hand-delivering it personally (with proof), keep copies for yourself along with any receipts or confirmation documents as evidence that proper notification was given in case disputes arise later on.

Fulfilling these requirements not only protects you legally but also demonstrates respect towards both parties involved – making for a smoother move overall. Remember: communication is key during this process; don’t hesitate to reach out if questions arise while preparing for relocation.

Giving the required notice is essential to ensure a smooth transition when moving out of an apartment. Now, let’s look at gathering all the necessary supplies for a successful move.

Key Takeaway: Gain insight into the process of transitioning out of an apartment with this guide. Get tips on how to prepare for the move, including cleaning and packing, as well as important tasks like notifying your landlord and transferring utilities.

3. Gather Moving Supplies

As you prepare for this significant transition, it’s essential to gather all necessary moving materials ahead of time. By gathering the required supplies ahead of time, you’ll be better prepared to wrap up your items and keep them safe from harm during transportation.

A. Boxes

Boxes are an indispensable part of any move, as they provide sturdy containers for packing up your household items. You can find various sizes and types of boxes at local stores or online retailers that cater specifically to moving needs. Be sure to get enough boxes in different sizes, including small ones for heavy items like books and larger ones for lighter objects such as pillows or linens.

B. Packing Tape

Packing tape is crucial when sealing boxes securely before transport; it ensures that nothing falls out or gets damaged along the way due to loose packaging materials coming undone during transit. Invest in high-quality packing tape with a dispenser – this will make taping up your boxes much easier and more efficient.

C. Bubble Wrap & Protective Materials

To safeguard fragile items like glassware, electronics, and delicate decorations from breakage during the move, use bubble wrap or other protective materials such as foam sheets or packing paper around these valuables before placing them into their designated box compartments (e.g., dishes should go inside dish packs).

D. Labels & Markers

Labels and markers are essential tools in keeping your move organized, as they allow you to identify the contents of each box easily. Use a permanent marker or purchase pre-printed labels that can be affixed directly onto boxes, indicating what’s inside them (such as “Kitchen” or “Bedroom”). This will help ensure that everything is placed in its proper location upon arrival at your new home.

E. Moving Blankets & Furniture Pads

Moving blankets and furniture pads protect larger items like sofas, tables, and appliances from scratches or dents during transit. These thick coverings can be bought or rented, ensuring that all of your belongings arrive at their destination safely and without damage.

In addition to these essential supplies, consider investing in other helpful moving accessories such as dollies or hand trucks for transporting heavy items with ease. By gathering all necessary moving supplies beforehand, you’ll set yourself up for success on this exciting journey towards a fresh start in your new apartment.

Gathering the right moving supplies is essential to ensure a smooth move. Time to commence the packing of your items.

Key Takeaway: Discover instructions for leaving a rental residence with this resource. Get tips on packing, cleaning, and scheduling movers so that your move goes smoothly.

4. Pack Your Belongings

Gathering all your and your family’s possessions can be a challenge, but with an Inventory List it will become much simpler. To make the process smoother and more organized, follow these helpful packing tips:

Create an Inventory List

Before you start packing, create an inventory list of all items in each room. Create a record of all the objects in each room to ensure that nothing is misplaced or left behind while relocating. You can use a moving checklist as a guide.

Gather Packing Supplies

Purchase or gather necessary moving supplies such as boxes, bubble wrap, tape, markers for labeling boxes and furniture covers from local stores or online retailers like U-Haul Moving Supplies. Remember to get different sizes of boxes for various types of items.

Start with Least Used Items

Begin by packing items that are not frequently used in your household like seasonal decorations or extra linens. This way you won’t disrupt daily life while preparing for the move.

Pack Room-by-Room

To stay organized throughout the process, pack one room at a time starting with bedrooms followed by living areas then finally kitchen & bathroom essentials on the move day itself, so they’re readily accessible when needed after arriving at new home location. Label each box clearly indicating its contents along with designated area where it should go upon arrival (e.g., “Kitchen – Pots & Pans”). For fragile items, consider using special packing techniques to prevent damage during transit.

Pack a Moving Day Essentials Box

Create an essentials box containing items you’ll need immediately upon arrival at your new home, such as toiletries, clothes for the first day or two, important documents and any medications required by family members. This will save time searching through numerous boxes when settling into new surroundings after long moving process has been completed successfully.

Don’t Forget Your Pet’s Belongings

Last but not least, remember to pack all necessary belongings related specifically towards pets including food dishes, toys & bedding materials, so they too can feel comfortable in their brand-new environment without feeling stressed out due lack familiar objects around them which may cause anxiety issues later down line if left unaddressed early on within transition period itself .

Once all your possessions are packed, ensure they are properly secured for transport. Now, let’s move on to the next step in this process: fixing what you broke.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Get tips on how to prepare, pack efficiently, and clean up before leaving your old place behind.

5. Fix What You Broke

Maintaining a good relationship with your landlord and getting back your full security deposit depend on taking the time to fix any damages you may have caused during your stay. Here are some steps to follow when fixing what you broke:

  1. Evaluate and document damages: Walk through each room in the apartment and make a list of all visible damages that need repair. Take photos as evidence for both yourself and the landlord.
  2. Refer to your lease agreement: Review your lease agreement carefully to determine which repairs are under your responsibility and which ones fall on the landlord or property manager. If unsure, consult with them directly or seek legal advice from an expert like a tenant attorney.
  3. Gather necessary tools and materials: Once you know what needs fixing, gather all required tools such as hammers, screwdrivers, paintbrushes, etc., along with appropriate materials like nails, screws or paint.
  4. Carefully perform repairs: With everything ready at hand, start working on repairing damaged items one by one while ensuring safety precautions are taken into account (e.g., turning off electricity before working on electrical outlets).
  5. Hire professionals if needed: If there is extensive damage beyond DIY capabilities or if certain tasks require specialized skills (like plumbing), consider hiring professional services such as those offered by HomeAdvisor.
  6. Keep receipts: Retain all receipts for materials and services purchased during the repair process. This will serve as proof of your efforts to fix damages, which can be helpful in case of any disputes with the landlord.

In addition to fixing what you broke, it’s also essential to remove any personal installations or modifications made during your stay (unless agreed upon otherwise with the landlord). For example, if you installed shelves or curtain rods, they should be removed and original fixtures restored before moving out.

Before you depart, ensure that anything damaged by your occupancy is repaired. This includes any damages or broken items such as windows, doors and furniture. Now it’s time to clean up your apartment before leaving for good.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Get tips on packing, cleaning, and organizing your move-out process to ensure a smooth transition into your new home.

6. Clean Your Apartment

Cleaning your apartment thoroughly before moving out is essential to ensure that you get your security deposit back. A clean and well-maintained apartment will also leave a good impression on the landlord, making it easier for them to rent it out again.

Follow these steps to make sure your apartment is spotless:

  1. Declutter: Before you start cleaning, declutter all rooms by removing any items that are not going with you. This includes trash, personal belongings, and unwanted furniture or appliances. Consider donating usable items to a local charity or organizing a garage sale.
  2. Dust: Dust every surface in the apartment including shelves, countertops, windowsills, ceiling fans and light fixtures. Don’t forget hard-to-reach areas like air vents and behind appliances.
  3. Vacuum: Vacuum all floors thoroughly using appropriate attachments for carpets and hardwood floors. Be sure to vacuum under furniture as well as along baseboards.
  4. Mop Floors: Mop all non-carpeted floors with an appropriate cleaner for each type of flooring (e.g., wood floor cleaner for hardwoods).
  5. Clean Appliances: Thoroughly clean all appliances such as oven, refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave etc. Make sure they are free from food debris & stains. Use proper cleaners specifically designed for each appliance.
  6. Wipe Down Walls: Remove scuffs & marks from walls using warm soapy water or magic eraser sponge. Pay special attention around door handles & light switches where dirt tends accumulate over time.
  7. Clean Windows: Wash inside & outside of windows using glass cleaner or a mixture of vinegar & water . Don’t forget to clean window sills , tracks & screens as well.
  8. Deep Clean Bathroom: Scrub toilet, bathtub / shower stall, sink & tiles with appropriate cleaners. Remove any mold or mildew buildup in grout lines. Polish mirrors faucets until they shine.
  9. Check for Pet Hair: If you have a pet, make sure to remove all traces of pet hair from carpets, furniture and other surfaces. Use a lint roller or specialized pet hair removal tool if necessary. 

In addition to these cleaning tasks, don’t forget about the outdoor areas such as balconies and patios. Sweep away leaves and debris, wipe down railings and clean any outdoor light fixtures.

If you’re short on time or simply want to ensure that your apartment is cleaned professionally, consider hiring a reputable moving company that offers cleaning services as part of their package. Hire a reliable mover to take care of the mess while you concentrate on settling in.

Before scheduling a pre move out inspection, make sure you clean your apartment thoroughly. Doing so will help ensure that the process runs smoothly and quickly. Now it’s time to plan for the next step in moving out of your apartment: scheduling a pre move out inspection.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Get tips on how to pack efficiently, clean the space thoroughly, and handle any necessary repairs or inspections before leaving.

7. Schedule Pre Move Out Inspection

Scheduling a pre move out inspection with your landlord or property manager is an essential step in the moving out process. By scheduling a pre move out inspection, you can gain an understanding of what portion of your security deposit will be returned and address any potential issues before departing the apartment, thus avoiding conflicts and facilitating a seamless transition. By taking care of these matters beforehand, you can avoid disputes and ensure a smooth transition for both parties.

To make the most out of your pre move out inspection, consider following these steps:

  1. Contact your landlord early: Reach out to your landlord or property manager well in advance to schedule the inspection at a mutually convenient time. This allows ample opportunity for any necessary repairs or cleaning tasks.
  2. Create a checklist: Prepare a list of items that may require attention based on your lease agreement and personal observations. Use this as a guide during the inspection so nothing gets overlooked.
  3. Be present during the inspection: It’s important for you (or another adult family member) to be present during the walkthrough so that any concerns can be discussed immediately, ensuring clarity on what needs fixing or cleaning up.
  4. Take photos and notes: Documenting all aspects of the apartment’s condition – including walls, floors, appliances, fixtures – will provide evidence should there be disagreements about damages later on.
  5. Acknowledge receipt of feedback: After the inspection, make sure to sign and acknowledge any feedback provided by your landlord or property manager. Acknowledge any input given after the review by signing off on it, so as to create a written account of what was gone over during the assessment.

By scheduling a pre move out inspection and addressing any issues beforehand, you can increase your chances of receiving your full security deposit back and ensure a smooth transition for both you and your landlord. Don’t forget to hire professional movers if needed, especially when dealing with large furniture items or delicate belongings that require special care.

It is important to schedule a pre move out inspection in order to ensure that the apartment meets all of the necessary requirements before vacating. Furthermore, it is essential to disconnect or transfer utilities prior to moving day for a successful transition into your new home.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Get tips on packing, cleaning, and notifying your landlord in advance to ensure a smooth move-out process.

8. Disconnect or Transfer Utilities

Before you move out of your apartment, it’s essential to take care of the utilities that were in use during your stay. This step is crucial not only for avoiding any unexpected bills but also for ensuring a smooth transition into your new home. To help you with this process, we’ve compiled some key points and tips on how to disconnect or transfer utilities when moving out.

A. Make a List of All Your Utilities

The first thing you need to do is make a list of all the utilities connected to your apartment, such as:

  • Electricity
  • Water and sewage
  • Natural gas
  • Cable TV and internet services
  • Home security system (if applicable)

B. Contact Utility Providers Early On

Contact each utility provider at least two weeks before your move-out date so they can schedule disconnection or transfer services accordingly. You may be able to handle some requests online through their websites; however, others might require phone calls.

C. Decide Whether to Disconnect or Transfer Services

If you’re moving within the same city or service area, transferring utility accounts from one address to another is usually more convenient than starting fresh with new providers at the new location.

Note:Transferring existing accounts often saves time since you don’t have to set up new accounts and pay deposits. If you’re moving out of the service area, make sure to disconnect your utilities at the old apartment and sign up for services with providers in your new location.

D. Update Your Billing Address

Don’t forget to update your billing address with each utility provider so that any final bills or refunds can be sent to the correct address. For added security, the USPS can be utilized to establish a mail forwarding service.

In Summary:

Ensuring all utilities are taken care of prior to moving out is essential for a successful transition. By making a list of all connected utilities, contacting providers early on, deciding whether to disconnect or transfer services, and updating your billing address, you’ll be well-prepared for this important aspect of moving out.

Disconnecting and transferring utilities is an important step when moving out of an apartment, so be sure to take care of it before returning the keys and documents. Next, let’s look into the requirements for giving back any relevant materials.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Glean advice on how to box up, clean, and arrange your relocation for a stress-free move into your new home.

9. Return Keys and Documents

Once you have completed the moving process, it’s essential to return all keys and documents related to the apartment to your landlord or property manager. This step is crucial in ensuring a smooth transition out of your old home and avoiding any potential disputes or issues with your former landlord.

To make this process as seamless as possible, consider following these steps:

  1. Gather all keys: Collect every key associated with the apartment, including front door keys, mailbox keys, storage unit keys, garage remote controls (if applicable), and any other access devices provided by the landlord.
  2. Create an inventory list: Make a detailed list of all items being returned so that both parties can easily reference what has been handed over. You may want to include serial numbers for items like garage remotes or electronic key fobs if available.
  3. Contact your landlord/property manager: Reach out to them well before your move-out date to schedule a time for returning everything. Be sure also to ask about their preferred method of return – some landlords might prefer mailed packages while others may require an in-person handoff at their office or rental property location.
  4. Pack everything securely: Use envelopes or small boxes labeled with clear descriptions of their contents when packing up documents such as lease agreements, maintenance records, receipts for rent payments made throughout tenancy etc., along with each set of corresponding keys.
  5. Obtain proof delivery: Whether handing off items person mailing them, always request signed receipt confirming landlord property manager has received everything order. This documentation can serve valuable evidence case disputes arise later regarding returned items.

In addition to keys and documents, don’t forget about any parking permits or access cards you may have been provided during your tenancy. These should also be returned along with the other items mentioned above.

Ensuring the above items are dealt with properly can help maintain a positive relationship with your landlord and prevent any unneeded troubles while transitioning to your new home.

Key Takeaway: Learn what to do when moving out of an apartment with this brief guide. Get tips on how to prepare for the move, including packing and organizing your belongings, cleaning the space, and notifying necessary parties such as landlords or utility companies.

what to do when moving out of apartment

Frequently Asked Questions What to Do When Moving Out of Apartment

What is the most common age to move out?

The most common age to move out varies depending on cultural and financial factors. In general, young adults tend to move out of their parents’ home between the ages of 18-25. However, this may differ for married couples with children who might relocate due to job opportunities or a need for more space.

How do I prepare myself for moving out?

To prepare yourself for moving out, start by creating a timeline and budget. Research potential new locations and visit them if possible. Gather necessary moving supplies such as boxes, packing materials, and labels. Begin decluttering your belongings early on so you can pack efficiently when it’s time to move.

What should I do when I am moving out?

When moving out, follow these steps: give required notice to your landlord; find a new place; gather supplies; pack your belongings; fix any damages in your current apartment; clean thoroughly before leaving; schedule a pre-move-out inspection with the landlord or property manager; disconnect or transfer utilities at both places; return keys and documents related to your old apartment.

How can I make moving easier?

To make moving easier:

  • Create an organized plan
  • Pack items systematically
  • Gather all necessary documents beforehand
  • Hire professional movers if needed


Departing an apartment can be a trying event, but with advance preparation and adhering to the aforementioned steps, it should be much simpler. From finding a new place to live to returning your keys and documents at the end of your lease, do when moving out of apartment is something that should not be taken lightly. With careful organization, you can ensure a seamless transition when moving out of your apartment.

Let SEKA Moving take the stress out of your move. Our experienced team will ensure a smooth transition from one apartment to another with our full-service moving and storage solutions.

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