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A Tenant’s Guide to Transferring Utilities When Renting

male college student carrying box moving into accommodation

If you’re moving from one rental apartment to another, one important item on your checklist is to transfer utility services from your old residence to your new one. This task can be troublesome — both for first time home renters and those who have changed homes before.

Here are some home renter tips to consider when transferring utilities:

Make a list of utility services you need to transfer

Around four weeks before moving day, make a checklist of the services that you currently use, such as the following:

  • Water
  • Electricity
  • Gas
  • Trash pickup
  • Internet
  • Cable TV / Streaming Service
  • Landline
  • Home security

You should also add or update key information such as:

  • Account numbers
  • Utility provider’s name
  • Utility provider’s contact information
  • How much you pay on average for each service

Often included in guides to renting an apartment, listing out the utilities you use not only helps you be more thorough in your preparation, but it can also help you whittle down your expenses. For instance, if you see that you’re paying a good amount of money for a premium streaming subscription that you don’t actually use that much, now would be the perfect opportunity to cancel that account.

Find new providers at your new neighborhood

Around a month or so before your move, do some research and find out the available providers for these services in the area you are moving to.

Just like when you’re renting a house for the first time, you can also ask your landlord if basic utilities such as water, gas, and electricity are included in your rent. If they are, chances are you’re not responsible for setting them up.

If they aren’t included in your rent, make sure to ask your landlord if they have any recommendations, or if they could at least provide a list of providers that are available in the area.

Inform your utility providers

Once you have decided which services to keep and which ones to cancel or change, call your service providers and let them know about your decision. Do this at least three to four weeks before you move out, in order to give them enough time to transfer — or, in the case of cancellation, disconnect — their services.

You should also take this moment to settle any outstanding bills that you might have, since unpaid bills can negatively impact your credit score.

Schedule utility activation at your new apartment

At least two weeks before you move, inform your new utility providers of your move-in date. This will give them enough time to turn on utilities at your new apartment and ensure that everything will be seamless when you move.

Do note that some utility providers require someone from your party to be present during activation. If you can’t make it to the activation in person, you can ask a trusted friend or family member to attend on your behalf.

Schedule a final meter reading

Around a week before you move out, arrange for a final reading of your apartment’s gas, electric, and water meters. This will help you get the most accurate usage date for your last bill, as well as protect you from getting overcharged.

Moreover, if your utility providers — such as those for internet and cable — supplied you with equipment such as modems and TV boxes, now is the time to return them if they need replacing.

Make sure your utilities are turned off

Once everything has been ironed out with your current utility providers, schedule a shut-off date, preferably on the same day that you move out.

Utility shut-off can be verified by checking your account status online or by calling your former utility provider.

Check the fixtures and appliances in your new home

As mentioned in many apartment living guides, you should go through your new apartment upon your arrival and check to make sure everything, from your water lines to your WiFi, is working properly.

If there are utilities that still need to be fixed, let your landlord and utility providers know immediately so that they can be addressed in the fastest possible time.

Even if you’re a first time home renter, setting up utilities does not have to be a stressful and complicated process — all you need is enough preparation to ensure a seamless transition into your new home.

If you’re looking for home rentals in Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and South Carolina, contact Sundance Property Management today!

Equipped with two decades of experience, Sundance Property Management is dedicated to helping tenants find properties that fit their lifestyles.

Call the Sundance Property Management team at 513.489.3363 or send us an email at info(at)sdpmi(dotted)com for more information.