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Moving Tips and Checklist

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Ballard Fine Homes
March 20, 2024
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Moving to Vancouver Island is an exciting new chapter, but it can also be intimidating at times. To help you navigate this transition smoothly, we’ve created a moving checklist.

If you are choosing to move to Parksville, Nanaimo, Comox, or Courtenay, this guide will ensure you’re well-prepared for every step of the journey. From planning your move to settling into your new home, we’ve got you covered.

Jump to grab your free, downloadable checklist


Children playing in their backyard with the family's dog.

Section 1: Pre-Move Planning

Set a Moving Date

Choosing the right moving date is crucial for a smooth relocation.

On Vancouver Island, rainfall should be taken into account when planning your moving date. April and November are usually the heaviest for rainfall, while the rest of the winter experiences fairly consistent precipitation.

Waiting until the warmer months sounds good, but you’re not alone in that thought. Peak moving seasons can cause delays caused by personal schedules, vacation plans, and waitlists for moving trucks.

Create a Budget

Moving can be costly, so it’s important to create a budget to help you manage expenses.
Estimate costs for transportation, packing supplies, and any additional services you may need. Don’t forget to budget for unexpected expenses that may arise during your move. On the island, U-Haul and self-storage services are quite popular.

Research Your New Home

Before you move, take the time to research your new community. Learn about the neighbourhoods, schools, and amenities available in Parksville, Nanaimo, Comox, or Courtenay.

Try to think outside of the box when it comes to daily living. If you are moving from elsewhere in Canada, you may want to revisit the basics, like your fall yard checklist to ensure you’re well prepared ahead of time.

Declutter and Donate

Moving is the perfect opportunity to declutter your belongings. Sort through your items and decide what to keep, donate, or discard. Consider donating gently used items to local charities and thrift stores. The SOS in Parksville is a popular choice, as well as many auxiliaries for health care after you’ve settled in.


focus on duct tape close up in storage room

Section 2: Packing and Organization

Gather Packing Supplies

Collect all the packing supplies you’ll need, such as boxes, tape, bubble wrap, and markers. You can purchase these items or find free supplies from local stores in Vancouver Island. Grocery and liquor stores usually have an abundance of boxes you can grab for free – just ask.

Create a Packing Plan

Develop a packing plan to organize your move efficiently. Start by packing non-essential items first and label each box with its contents and destination room. This will make unpacking much easier once you arrive at your new home.

Pack Essential Items

Pack a separate box with essential items you’ll need immediately upon arrival, such as toiletries, a change of clothes, and important documents. Keep this box with you during the move for easy access. That way, there will be less stress trying to unpack everything all at once.

Arrange for Storage (if necessary)

If you need temporary storage for your belongings, research storage options. Ensure the storage facility is secure and offers the space you need for your items. PQ Self Storage and Valley Self Storage are a couple of examples.

A key is inserted into the door of a new house, inside the room are cardboard boxes

Section 3: Moving Day

Confirm Moving Details

Double-check your moving arrangements, including the moving company’s schedule and any other services you’ve booked. Make sure utilities are set up at your new home to avoid any interruptions.

Finalize Packing

Finish packing the remaining items in your home, disassemble furniture if necessary, and prepare everything for the move. Ensure all boxes are properly sealed and labelled for easy identification.

Moving Out

Before you leave your old home, do a final walkthrough to ensure everything is packed and clean. Leave behind any necessary keys, garage door openers, and other items for the new occupants.

Cheerful young family smiling and unboxing their stuff while moving into a new home.

Section 4: Settling In

Unpacking and Organizing

Once you arrive at your new home, start unpacking and organizing your belongings. Follow your packing plan to unpack room by room, and set up essential items first, such as beds and kitchen supplies. Don’t forget to order take-out for dinner – cooking is the last thing you’ll want to be doing!

Explore Your New Neighborhood

Take some time to explore your new neighbourhood and familiarize yourself with the local amenities. Go for a walk to unwind from your busy day.

Update Your Information

Update your address with relevant organizations, such as banks, insurance companies, and government agencies. Don’t forget to update your driver’s license and vehicle registration to reflect your new address.

Printable Moving Checklist

Moving to Vancouver Island can be a smooth and stress-free experience with the right planning and preparation. By following our moving checklist, you’ll be well-equipped to handle every aspect of your move, from packing to settling into your new home. If you are interested in building a custom home, please reach out to our team for more information.

Click to download a PDF version of this checklist.