How can you keep your home-office running whilst moving house

When the time comes to move, how can you ensure it goes smoothly?

Having made the decision to move, sold your home and found a new one, the fun really starts. Keeping tabs on all aspects of the move is going to be stressful. Forward planning is essential, although no-one can be perfect. But there are some simple things you can try to ease the pain:

  • Sort out change of address cards early, tell as many people as possible.
  • Make sure that once you invoice people and expect to be paid after the move, that the right address is on the invoice.
  • Make sure the telephone is up and running on the day of our move but warn people not to phone unless it is an emergency. Check that diverts are in place, and double-check a few days later. Check directory enquiries know that your business is moving too.
  • Make sure the mail is diverted and as people write to you, reply with a change of address card.
  • Keep your bank manager informed. You may need a sympathetic ear if a cheque is sent to the wrong address or the lack of work causes a cashflow problem.
  • Treat the week of your move as you would a holiday – clear the decks in advance but then be ready to start again as soon as is practicable.
  • Try and clear your office of unwanted junk but do not get so carried away that valuable contact lists or reference materials get binned. Stress to the removal men that your work stuff is valuable and should be treated with kid gloves.
  • Have a clear idea where you are establishing the new office and try and sort that out as quickly as possible. Spending the next month hunting for a lost bit of paper is a waste of time and money.

Even the best laid plans can go awry, so be prepared for a few hiccups along the way. If you do start to get work phone calls just as you are making the umpteenth cup of tea for the removal men, stay calm but explain that now is not convenient, promise to call back and then keep the promise.

Remember that clients do not want to know the hell you are going through – they just care about the work being done on time.

Emails are a godsend to homeworkers and the great news is that addresses do not change when you do. People can stay in touch and you can send a reply at odd times of day when you have a quiet five minutes.

Strange as it may seem, some people move house for a living. They buy an old wreck, do it up, and make a handsome profit as they move on to the next project.

With house prices rocketing ever upwards, it may seem a tempting thing to do. But for most of us, moving once in seven years is probably often enough.

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