You can’t go home again—or, maybe you just don’t want to. According to a survey conducted by the management consulting company Accenture, nearly 70 percent of college students plan to live on their own or with friends after graduation. Once you make the decision to live away from home, it’s easy to overlook important tasks in the chaos of moving. To avoid complications, follow this checklist:
- Forward your mail through usps.com. Failing to do so makes you more susceptible to identity theft, because your mail could end up in the wrong hands.
- Be sure to watch your bank accounts, credit cards and check your credit reports for suspicious activity two months following your move. You can receive a free credit report at annualcreditreport.com.
- Obtain a driver’s license with your new address. If you are moving to a new state, know the requirements for obtaining it in there; you may need to bring specific documents with you. You can find information at DMV.org.
- Also if you are moving out of state: Get a new auto insurance policy, because states have different insurance requirements.
- Register to vote. You may be able to accomplish this task at the DMV when you update your driver’s license.
- Set up your Internet and cable or satellite service. Call around to find the best prices on television, phone, Internet, alarm systems and bundles available in your new area.
- For insurance purposes, create a house inventory. Your house inventory helps you determine how much insurance you need to replace the items should you get burglarized. Include pictures and receipts with your inventory, and update it every year.
- Visit the local branch of your bank and secure a safe deposit box to store all your important papers (including your house inventory).
- Save all your receipts from your move; some of these costs may be tax deductible. You will find information related to this at IRS.gov.
- Keep up with car maintenance, especially if you have a long road trip ahead. Check your fluids, brakes and tires. Tirebuyer.com sells touring tires that are good for frequent long-distance trips through various climates.
Don’t Forget to Change Your Address and Phone Number On Your:
- Car loans and/or bank statements
- Insurance policies
- Credit card statements (don’t forget your retailer, department store and gas station accounts)
- Student loans
- Cell phone bill
- Legal and financial documents – investment, retirement, Social Security and attorney
- Magazine and newspaper subscriptions
- Rewards programs, licensing boards and professional memberships
- Regularly scheduled deliveries (i.e., medications, food and beverage clubs)
If you expect to receive any documents from your college or a previous employer, remember to change your address and phone number at these establishments as well.