11 Moving House Nightmares Revealed (And How You Can Avoid Them)
21st February 2019

11 Moving House Nightmares Revealed (And How You Can Avoid Them)

Moving house is often described as one of the most stressful and expensive nightmares many people will ever forego.

But with some careful planning and the right removals company moving house nightmares can easily be avoided, as GoodMove explains.

Moving House Nightmares

Take this nightmarish real-life scenario:

You’ve finished packing up the entire contents of your house or flat only for your solicitor to call to tell you the property chain has stalled.

Your buyer has collected the keys and wants to move in right away.

You have no option if you want to preserve the chain but to move into a hotel and place your household items into storage.

What’s more once you finally move into your new property you find items missing and broken.

What started off as a straightforward low-cost move can quickly escalate into an expensive nightmare.

There’s no denying that things go wrong during house moves. But with some careful contingency planning and a removals company that can offer you flexible solutions and insurance it need not break the bank.

Here’s 11 moving house nightmares and how they can be easily resolved:


Airport boarding delay signThe most common cause of nightmares when moving to a new house are delays.

Completion delays can stall your ability to move into your new home, thus incurring added fees for extra time a removals team spends on a job.

You can keep calling your solicitor to check the transfer of the funds has gone through but it’s not always possible to guarantee the move goes ahead as planned.


Hire a removals company that can offer you flexible storage.

That way if something goes amiss you have the fall-back option of being able to place your items into storage while you complete.

Going it alone

It can be tempting to hire your own van and go it alone to cut costs. Particularly if your house move only covers a short distance and you don’t own many possessions.

However, many people come up short (quite literally) when the van they hired doesn’t fit all the contents and they have to make extra trips.

If you’re hiring by the hour or a day rate this can be a costly error.


Use a professional removals company.

A removals company with its own fleet will have vehicles of all shapes and sizes. They can also advise as to what items will fit onto the lorry and which will require specialist care.

Breakages/Missing items


There’s nothing worse than moving into your new home and unboxing your items to find something broken or worse still, missing altogether.


Breakages happen from time to time but can be avoided in most cases through the use of quality packaging materials.

If you’re travelling a long way, it might be a good idea to label and list the contents of each box.

Make sure all your items are listed on an inventory as well.

That way if something goes missing you can account for it and claim accordingly.

Hidden extras

Another nightmarish and common frustration for UK house movers if being charged for hidden extras.

You might agree on a fixed price only to find you later need an additional service that is not specified in your contract.


Make sure you receive an itemised quote detailing each and every aspect of your move from your removals company.

Review it carefully and don’t assume that a service is included if not specified.

If there is something you think you might need on the day bring it up during the survey so it can be negotiated on or added to your final billing.

Your Removals Company is unreliable

Your removals company is due to arrive by 9am to help you move and when you call they say they are “on their way”.

The hours roll by and still no one has arrived. Next thing you know they aren’t picking up your calls and night is falling.


It is a cliché but it really pays to do your research when it comes to picking a removals company.

Remember cheapest doesn’t always mean high quality.

Always look for British Association of Removers accreditation, the stamp of industry approval.

Look up their reviews online. And not just the curated ones on their website. Independent sites like Trustpilot and ReferenceLine offer reviews of the best removals company.

Not Checking Your Insurance

Failure to check your insurance coverage beforehand is a sure-fire way to a truly nightmarish move.

Most removals company will offer you some form of standard liability insurance to ensure against the damage of your goods while in their care.


The onus is on you to check what level of cover your removals company offers and take out additional cover if needed.

Bonus tip: If moving overseas it is a good idea to research into marine liability insurance or any other form to cover your goods while in transit.

Removals company can’t move certain items

Certain items such as electrical or plumbing appliances/items – if being brought with you – need to be correctly uninstalled before a removals company can safely move them.


Make a list of items/appliances you are bringing with you that will need to be looked at by a professional beforehand.

Access issues

You will need to ensure that your removals company is able to access your property on the day of the move.

This relates both to your existing property and the new home you are moving into.


Discuss with your removals company beforehand.

Maintain a constant dialogue and let them know if you think there will be any access issues on the day.

If so, clear driveways and provide alternative routes of entry that will be suitable for the transporting of large and or heavy goods.

Moving House on a particular day

Friday is seen as a good day to move house as you can take just the one day off work and then have the weekend to settle in.

However, what many people overlook is that if something goes wrong on the Friday you might have trouble rectifying it.

Some banks and solicitors don’t open on Saturdays and Sundays and you could end up stranded.


Plan your move carefully and ensure you have time either side to account for anything should a delay or unforeseen circumstance occur.

Enquire with your bank and solicitors as to opening times and what their policy is on the eventuality of a delay.

Enjoying this post? Why not read our blog post: Is Friday The Best Day Of The Week To Move House?

Failure to pack essentials

Donation box with food on red background close-up

Picture the scene:

You’ve arrived safely to your new house with all your items in tow. But when you go to make the kids their dinner or switch the kettle you find everything is buried in unmarked boxes.


Pack a Moving House Essentials Box.

This way you will have a box of absolute essentials that you can access straight away should you require it. Common items to include are:

  • Non-perishable food
  • Cutlery, cups and plates
  • Kettle
  • Medication
  • Toilet paper

Your Furniture Doesn’t fit

Another moving house nightmare is when you move certain items that simply don’t fit into your new house.

If not they can cause damage to the property. For example if a sofa brushes the paintwork off the wall while being taken up the narrow stairwell.


Whether you’re expanding or downsizing, furniture and beds need to be measured to ensure they fit in their new home.

What To Do If Something Goes Wrong?

Keep calm.

Try as removals companies do to minimise disruption and damage sometimes they do occur despite our best laid plans.

Having someone to turn to when this happens is of vital importance.

Contact your removals company.

The chances are it is something they have either seen or dealt with before.

The best removals company have years of experience dealing with these sorts of things and can offer practical advice and guidance on what to do next.

Those companies with British Association of Removers accreditation will be able to direct you to the right people to deal with your complaint.

You should also look to:

  • Contracts – Each contract you sign included your itemised quote should be a legally enforceable document that you can rely on.
  • Insurance – Make sure you are covered for all the items you will be moving as part of your house move.
  • Claims – The British Association of Remover offers expert guidance on moving house complaints and what to do if something goes wrong.
  • Ombudsman services – Complaints made against any BAR member are handled by the Furniture Ombudsman, an independent and consumer ADR approved body that can deal with your issue.

How Can GoodMove Be Of Assistance?

Of course one of the safest ways to guard against nightmare house moves is to pick a quality removals company.

Trying to cut costs by using a ‘man in a van’ option can quickly land you in hot water.

GoodMove is a professional and highly-regarded removals company based in Essex which is accredited by the British Association of Removers.

With over 35 years’ experience handling removals in the UK and internationally we have built p and enviable reputation both locally and abroad.

We also offer a range of flexible storage solutions for each of our customers via our secure storage units based at our site in near Colchester.

To find out how we can get your move underway and avoid a nightmarish start to life in your new home don’t hesitate to call us today.

Alternatively fill out a quick quote form and we will be in touch shortly.