Things to consider when moving out
From Commuter Center and Off-Campus Services
Are you planning on moving from your current residence soon? Make sure you do it right.
Did you know the most common moving mistake is as simple as forgetting to cancel the utilities? Moving out can be a time-consuming process under even the best circumstances, yet knowing the essential tasks can help reduce that stress and facilitate a clean break from your lease.
OK, so we made up the most common mistake part. But if you're interested in moving out without leaving your prize collection of Beanie Babies behind in a speedy exodus, read further and become a master of the move-out.
Moving out = money
The title of this section should have been "Security Deposits" but we had to get your attention somehow, right? Landlords are required to return security deposits to you in whole plus 1 percent interest for every year they held it. They may, however, deduct any costs above the routine maintenance of the residence. Always request an itemized list of deductions.
Clean and capture (with a photograph, that is)
Before you move out you will want to capture the condition of your place in photograph form. This means clean it thoroughly first and make a detailed visual record of the state of your residence. Also, take your pictures as close to move-out day as possible to reduce the risk of undocumented damage between the two events.
Clump and dump
So you've managed to fill your place with more clutter than the attic back at Mom and Dad's. No problem. Clump your belongings into two piles: one headed for your next residence and the other headed for that great landfill in the sky. If you discover that you have a seemingly unhealthy love of empty pizza boxes and similar trash, say "when" and put garbage in the garbage.
Three R's: Re-examine, Re-evaluate, Recycle
Now that you have your two piles, focus your attention on the unwanted one. Practice your three R's: Re-examine the pile. You'll notice that some stuff is recyclable or can be donated and other stuff is less deserving of such a worthy fate. This calls for step two: Re-evaluate the items. Cast judgment and separate the chosen articles from the unworthy. Step three: Recycle the items you have chosen for that purpose. We know you want to keep that Pentium II for nostalgia, but do it a favor and take it over to the recycling center. Check out sites such as GreenGardian.com, Goodwill Industries International Inc., or the Salvation Army for more information about what to do with your gently used items.
Not everyone who is moving out is returning to a residence immediately. If you're planning on being without a permanent residence for an extended period of time, consider keeping your belongings in a storage facility. We know you are neighborly; however, that person offering to watch your personal effects for free might not be. Check out sites such as SMARTBOX for storage options. As always, make sure you understand the contracts that many of these places offer.
Remember our fictitious stat about the big common mistake? Don't be that person helping to make it a reality. Cancel your utilities before you move out. This may or may not involve some work on your part, so set aside more time than you feel you will need.
Contact your county for more information
Although we have started you on the path of move-out mastership, there's no way to plan for every situation. The only real solution is good old-fashioned legwork. Because different locales have different laws and regulations, make sure to contact your county about more information on any of the above topics.
Below are some additional resources to help you get started.
- Commuter Center and off-Campus Services, (651) 962-6138
- Public Utilities Commission, (651) 296-7124
- St. Paul City Information, (651) 266-8989
- Tenants' Rights Information Line, (612) 341-3504