How Long Does It Take To Move House? Everything You Need To Know!

How long does it take to move house? This is a question every homeowner wants to know before they put their home on the market and it’s not an easy one to answer. Each real estate move is completely different from the next, this is because there can be many factors that hold up a home move.

The most common factors that can hold up a home move are:

  • The length of your chain. The more houses in the chain the more chance there is of things going wrong and hold-ups. Avoiding getting in a chain will increase your chances of a quick home move.

  • The age of the property that you are purchasing. Depending on how old the property is that you are purchasing, you may need separate searches such as damp, timber, asbestos and or structural surveys. This can all take time as you may need to wait weeks for surveyors to be free to get booked in.

  • Results of the valuation from the mortgage lenders, some properties may need remedial work doing before the mortgage lenders will lend the money on the property. The type of work that may need to be carried out maybe: complete rewiring, new central heating system or asbestos removal. These jobs if required may need to be completed before the lender will lend you the money on the property and for it to be deemed safe to live in.
Young family moving into their new house.

Exactly how long does it take to move house?

There are a few things you can do prior to the move to speed up the moving process! Follow these home moving tips to reduce the time required on moving day!

  1. Have a huge de-clutter!

    Spend time thinking about how much stuff you have to move. Reduce it if you can. The more stuff you have, the more boxes you’ll have to move and the longer it will take to load the moving truck.
    Get rid of it now rather than taking it with you!

  2. Get a moving company to help you.

    Think about whether you want to move by yourselves or by using a moving company. Moving companies will make the whole process a lot quicker because they will employ 2 to 3 experienced people. This will free up your time to get things organised and cleaned as you move out, which is especially important if you are moving out of a rented property.
    If you move by yourself it will take much longer. My advice after having just moved is to get a company to help you.
    We would definitely use a moving company if we did it all again.
    It took two of us two whole days to move using just a hire van and it was exhausting!!

  3. Take care of the important tasks first.

    Sort out all of the important tasks like home repairs, to make your house look presentable before you put it on the market, and help ensure a quick sale.
    There were two identical houses on our road up for sale at the same time. Our house was immaculately presented and decorated even though we had two small kids. The other house was very cluttered and unkempt. Our house took 12 weeks to sell and the other property was on the market for over a year and a half and still hadn’t sold when we moved out. Presentation really is everything!

  4. Rent a storage pod.

    Storage pods are transportable storage units which get dropped off and picked up when you’re ready, then delivered to your new home when you move. This allows you to pack up your boxes at any given time and move them into the pod at your leisure rather than doing it all in one day.

  5. Ask the charity shops to collect any unwanted bulky furniture.

    These days, many charity shops will come and collect any items of furniture you no longer need, this will save you time and energy getting rid of any heavy items no longer required. Doing this will free up your valuable time to pack the rest of your stuff! They will need about a couple of days notice to collect your stuff.

  6. Make the tip your best friend.

    I love going to the tip, it’s one of my favourite things to do. I love chucking away anything I no longer need or love.
    I especially loved getting rid of old broken items, unused garden furniture, bikes, old clothes, toys, and any excess stuff that was not nice enough to be donated to the charity shop.
    There is something very satisfying about throwing all your old stuff away.
    Get rid of it, rather than pay someone to move it to your new house!

  7. Set up a packing station.

    I set up a complete packing station with everything I needed to pack up all my boxes, this included:
    Packing tape.
    Packing boxes.
    Scissors.
    Bubble wrap.
    Foam packaging sheets.
    Marker pens.
    Labels.
    Packing gun/tape dispenser.
    Fragile/ handle with care labels.
    I kept everything in one place so that every time I wanted to pack a box everything I needed was always on hand and I didn’t have to pack everything away each evening.

  8. Preassemble your boxes in plenty of time.

    Preassemble all your boxes so they are ready to fill, and store them somewhere safe. This tip really is a timesaver. If you have a few minutes to spare you can just throw a few things in a box and seal it up quite quickly. I found this tip to be one of the best ever!

  9. Keep clothes on hangers

    Gather a few hangers together with the clothes still attached, put a rubber band around the hooks of the hanger, then place a bin bag over the clothes to keep them clean. Then hang them back up in the wardrobe until the day you move.
    On the move day simply unhook the hangers and carry them down to your car, you can then hang them straight up in your new home and remove the bin bags when you’re ready. This method is an amazing time saver and keeps clothes wrinkle-free all the way through the home move.

  10. Consider letting the moving company pack everything for you.

    This may cost a lot more than packing for yourself, however, a moving company can do it efficiently and effectively in very little time. The packing company are trained to pack things very carefully and always make sure everything is done properly.
    Although this sounds like a fantastic idea, I’m not hundred per cent sure I would want anybody else packing my stuff for me, I think I’m a bit too much of a control freak for that!

  11. Organise childcare for the day of the move

    Ask someone well in advance to look after your children on the day of the move. It may even be a good idea to have them stay over the night before to free up your moving day.
    We moved two days after the kids broke up for the summer holidays and it was a logistical nightmare. It was very difficult to pack anything as my kids needed constant attention.
    Sending the kids off to relatives is better for them and better for your sanity! Even if the kids are at school, having them stay with a relative means that you can get up very early and get on with the jobs in hand without having to worry about school runs, packing lunches, etc.

  12. Organise pet care for the day of the move.

    Having dogs and cats running around or trying to contain animals whilst moving house can be an utter nightmare. Make sure you have a pet sitter or think about putting your pets in kennels or a cattery on the day of the move. If you’re moving in the summer make sure you book well in advance as they can be very busy with people going on holiday.

  13. Sort out your change of address with Royal Mail

    You can sort out a change of address and mail redirection for anything up to three months prior to moving.
    You can choose to have your mail redirected for three months or six months after moving.

  14. Change all your utilities as early as you can.

    You can sort out utilities, council tax, gas, and home insurance early. Make sure you contact the DVLA and National Insurance as soon as you can after moving house to avoid a hefty fine!

  15. Clean out your cupboards as early as you can.

    Clean out your kitchen cupboards nice and early, this will save you a job in the run-up to the move. You can also leave cupboard doors open after you’ve packed as this will help you see which cupboards still need to be packed and which cupboards are empty. This trick really helped me stay organised when packing and made me recognise exactly how much I had achieved.

  16. Clean your oven

    This is a job you can do early and cross off your to-do list! If you can spare the money get someone in to do it for you, that really is a luxury and a massive timesaver!!

  17. Buy a packing tape dispenser

    This was one piece of kit I was really glad I’d invested in, it was super speedy, especially with the pre-assembled boxes!

  18. Keep in contact with your estate agents

    Keeping in contact with the estate agents is one of the most important steps to buying a house and can make the whole home buying process a lot less stressful. The estate agent can save you several hours in time by keeping you up-to-date throughout the home moving process.

  19. Create a moving inventory

    A moving inventory will help you see exactly what you have packed and what still needs to be packed and will help to keep you organised.
    Whether you are moving a few items or whether you are moving a whole house it is always good to know where things are at any given time.

How to avoid a property chain

House in chains.

Losing a purchase or sale through a break in the property chain can cost thousands of pounds and a whole lot of heartache. There are a couple of ways you can avoid a property chain.

  • Sell your house before buying a new one! This way you are in a stronger buying position if you’re not relying on the sale of your property before buying another home. You could always consider renting for a couple of months, or you could move in with family until your new property is ready.

  • If you have a few people interested in your property, choose a first-time buyer or someone who isn’t in a chain such as an investor. This will make things much easier and reduce the length of the chain.

  • When purchasing property strive to choose one that is empty and doesn’t have a chain, this is one of the fastest ways to speed up the purchase and sale of the house.

  • Consider buying a repossession, a repossession will always be empty and will have no chain. You can often get repossessed properties a lot cheaper too, so it’s a win-win situation for you!
How long does it take to move house with no chain?


All property purchases are different, some can be as soon as six weeks some can be up to six months, the average time from start to finish is approximately twelve weeks.

How long does it take to move house after signing contracts?

It took us approximately one week to move after signing contracts, taking into account weekends and non-working days such as bank holidays. About two weeks, however, is the most frequent time period between exchange and completion.

How long does it take to move house after a mortgage offer?

A mortgage approval means that the bank is happy to lend you the amount of money the advisor discussed with you at your appointment. They then need to complete their final checks on your finances such as verifying your income and doing a credit check. They also need to value your property.
After you’ve accepted the mortgage offer, your solicitor can start the last phase of buying your property, agree to exchange contracts with the seller, and set out your agreement of what’s included in the purchase price. You should be good to go as long as all other paperwork is in order.

How long does it take to move house after your offer has been accepted?

It takes about one month after the offer has been accepted as long as everything else is in order.

How long does it take to move house once it’s been sold?

There are a whole lot of things to consider such as how big your chain is.
Survey dependent, and depending on the age of the property ( if it was built after 2000) you may need timber reports, a damp report and an asbestos report.
There is a lot to consider and many things to do between now and completion. You may have a long chain which can often take things out of your control. You may need to have work done on the property before you can get a mortgage on it.
So in general, every house sale is different and it’s almost like asking how long is a piece of string!

How long does it take to move house once the chain is complete?

This is a very difficult question to answer as all chains are different and many things can go wrong with a chain right up until completion date. You are relying on other people to get the paperwork in order to make sure everything is okay for completion. Once you have completed you should be able to move within a few working days.

How long does it take to move house after the survey?

This really depends on many factors.
Our house needed a damp report, timber report, an asbestos report And all this took time.
It can take weeks to book surveyors to carry out the reports.
Then all the surveys need to be looked at by the mortgage company before they can lend you money on the property.
You may be asked to have remedial work done such as rewiring, asbestos removal etc before your bank will lend you the money for the property.

How many moving boxes for a one bedroom department?

The answer to this question really depends on how much stuff you have, you need to get rid of as much clutter as you can, the less stuff you’ve got the fewer boxes you need, it’s as simple as that!

How long does it take to move house after searches?

It should take 2 to 3 days as long as there are no weekends or bank holidays and all the paperwork is in order and complete.

How long will it take to move house?

You should be able to pack up all your stuff into the van in one day if you’re using a removal company. If you’re moving by yourselves it’s going to take much longer and you may need to do it over a couple of days if you get some people to help! Moving a small house will obviously take longer than moving an entire 5 bedroom house.

How long does it take to get used to a new house?

It depends on how quickly you can get your boxes unpacked and get your house clean and cosy. It also depends on how much work you need to have done in the house.
However, you will soon find that your house feels like your own quite quickly, especially if you can get fresh air into the house by opening windows, and by getting it clean!

How many days to take off for moving house?

The answer to this question depends on how organised you’ve been throughout the weeks prior to the move. If you’re pretty much fully packed up and ready to go, I would take the day before the move and the day after the move, so, three days all in all, including the moving day.

How long does it take to move into a new house?

It would usually take a moving company 3 to 4 hours to remove all of your stuff from the back of the van. It will take you longer if you are moving by yourselves without any movers and their services.

How long does it take to unpack a house?

If you set your mind to it you can get your house unpacked quite quickly, however, it’s always a good idea to take your time and make sure that you find a permanent home for everything in your house rather than just shoving things in the first place that you see.

How long does it take to move out of a house?

It can take the best part of the day to move all your belongings into the mover’s van. Depending on how much stuff you have.

How long does it take movers to pack a house?

It would take 6 to 10 hours to pack a three-bedroomed house.
8 to 12 hours to pack a four-bedroom home.
10 to 12 hours to pack up a five- bedroomed house.
A one bedroom apartment would take movers approximately 2 to 4 hours to pack and a two bedroomed apartment would take movers approximately 3 to 5 hours to pack.

How long does it take for movers to move cross country?

It takes movers on average of 15 to 20 days to move across country.

For more moving tips and information on what to pack first when moving house read this post

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You will soon be settling down and enjoying your new home!

For more information on the mortgage process and timeline read this post

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