Moving house in Singapore: A step-by-step guide [2021]

Moving house in Singapore should be exciting!

For most of us however, the simple thought of moving can make us anxious and a little stressed out.

Organising everything from movers to cleaners on top of the busy Singapore lifestyle (even in a lockdown!) is hard word. It can make anyone ask themselves whether moving house is worth it.

We promise you moving doesn’t need to be so hard. You can save hours, maybe even weeks, just by knowing how to quickly navigate everything you need to organise for your move.

In this guide, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive guide that will save you time and money when you move house.

You can also access a free moving checklist at any time which provides you with an editable task list. It’s perfect if you’re planning on moving in a few months or even in a few days.

The guide is split over four sections so you can jump straight the information that is most relevant for you:

  1. Movers in Singapore 🚚
    Types of movers in Singapore, cost of movers and we tell you Singapore’s top rated movers
  2. Getting your house in order 🏠
    All the other moving services you may need to organise such. For example, furniture disposal and storage, moving boxes, cleaners and transferring utilities / broadband
  3. Tips & tricks for packing 📦
    Life hacks to help you ensure that you make packing and unpacking a little less painful
  4. A few days before you move 🕐
    Practical and useful tips to make sure you are 100% on top of your move

Alright, let’s jump in!

1. Movers in Singapore 🚚

Finding a mover that you trust is often the first step as you prepare for your move.

With so many movers in Singapore, finding one that is both reliable and good value is like looking for a needle in a haystack. This section will help you jumpstart your search with handy tips and insights.

Types of movers

Movers are no different to selecting an airline (…remember the days of flying? *Sigh*). They range budget and no frills to premium and fully serviced

Movers in Singapore can fall anywhere across this scale and knowing what they offer will help you quickly understand whether you’re getting good value for money.

The below visual provides you a summary of the two extremes of this scale. 

Moving in Singapore - Understanding types of movers in Singapore

No frills is like flying Scoot. It’s bargain prices and customer service can vary. There may also be surprise or hidden charges on the day.

Premium on the other hand is like Singapore Airlines. You’ll pay a higher price but have greater peace of mind that everything is taken care of. 

In between both ends, you also have movers that fall somewhere in the middle which is where you are likely to find the most value.

There are exceptions to the above scale. If you are moving only a few pieces of furniture or don’t need boxes, packing or assembly, logistics companies such as LaLaMove offer an affordable option for as little as $50 to move your furniture.

Singapore’s Top Rated Movers 

There can be a lot of mistrust in the moving industry. Especially with stories of some movers adding extra costs on the day. So it’s important to not just shop on price but also find movers that have a good reputation. 

From our experience, it’s a little like dating because you can get a good sense if it’s the right match through the initial messages or conversations. First impressions are everything!

For example, are they’re asking questions about your move or just providing you with a quote? Do you like them? Are they respectful of your time? Do they have a good track history with strong reviews? 

Listed below are some of the more reputable movers in Singapore based on reviews to jumpstart your search. We also have a list of additional movers here.  

Value for money movers

  • Cheap Movers Singapore: Reputable mover and has 4.7 stars on Google with 313 reviews. Fast response time, typically within a day. They also offer services for special care items such as piano relocation
  • Cube Movers: Very affordable and MTI approved. Response time is fast and 30 boxes for packing is included for free. Cube Movers are also covered with Public Liability Insurance of $1M
  • Exped Moving Services: The highest rated we could find with 4.9 stars on Google with 90 reviews. Known for great customer service and being efficient. Available 24/7 by Whatsapp, call or email
Moving in Singapore - Exped Google review

Premium Movers

  • Shalom Movers: Singapore based movers and recently won Gold in the 2021 Expat Living readers choice awards for Best Mover. Shalom offers the full suite of moving services
  • Santa Fe: Premium service provider and they are well suited for both domestic and international moving. As they are an international company, they have the ability to provide all the moving services you can think of and are a professional outfit
  • Elite Movers: Super professional and great customer service. They will arrange a home survey and provide an accurate quote almost immediately after. Some mixed reviews and are 3.9 stars on Google

Note, we didn’t include any pure no frills / budget Singapore movers but you can check out Carousell and scan the reviews below

Moving in Singapore - Carousell movers

Getting a quote

We recommend getting a few quotes from different moving companies so that you can quickly compare and negotiate your move.

To get quotes, you can visit each company’s website or Facebook page and submit your moving request each time.

Or if you want to save 1 – 2 hours, you can get free moving quotes directly from our trusted Singapore moving partners.

It’ll take you about 90 seconds and you’ll start get moving quotes back within a day directly from the movers themselves. Plus you only have to fill out the form once.

Get free moving quotes

from singapore's best movers

Select current property type
Select number of bedrooms

Cost Of Hiring Movers In Singapore 

Now that you know that movers range from no frills to premium, you can start to compare moving quotes with a little more understanding. 

Other factors that drive costs for movers in Singapore include:

  • Size of your current place: This lets the mover know the size of the lorry required and how much time is required to move. For example, half or a full day
  • Additional services required: For example, dismantling or disposal of furniture
  • Lift access: If no lift access, some movers charge a fee for each flight of stairs that their team has to carry boxes and furniture up. This can be an extra $30 – $50 per flight of stairs
  • Distance push: If the movers need to carry items more than a certain distance (e.g. > 50m) there can be an extra $60 – $80 cost
  • Property charge: Some condos charge a fee for large moving trucks

It’s important you note the above before your move and ensure that it’s all covered in your quote to avoid any last minute surprises. 

Estimated cost guidelines

While every move is different, below are some estimated costs. These moving costs have been averaged across past moving data and provides you with a ballpark estimate.

  • Smaller moves such as 1 bedroom with some dismantling (e.g. bedframe) is estimated to be between $270 – $295
  • Moving from a 2 bedroom condo in the East Coast to a 2 bedroom condo in Holland Village is estimated to cost $630 – $750. This includes dismantling / assemble of furniture and boxes
  • For a 3 – 4 bedroom HDB, the moving cost can be $900+ if distance push is required. 

These are only estimated costs. For an accurate and personalised quotes from trusted Singapore movers, get free moving quotes 

2. Getting your house in order when moving in Singapore 🏠

Ensuring your move is seamless requires more than just moving stuff from place to place.

This section covers:

  • Transferring utilities & broadband
  • End of lease cleaning
  • Moving boxes & supplies
  • Storage space in Singapore

You can also track all of these plus more in the moving checklist. Ideal for anyone who loves a good list!

Click HERE to access the moving checklist

Transferring utilities when moving house

When moving in Singapore, it’s important to let your utilities provider know your moving to avoid a warm fridge and nowhere to charge your phone!

Don’t wait until the last minute to let your utility provider know that you’re moving. You can run into some hurdles depending on your provider.

To help you along the way, we have outlined the steps you need to take depending on your energy provider.

Scenario 1: Moving house & continuing on with SP group.

  • The first step is a little counterintuitive but you must first close your count with SP Group. Unfortunately each account is tied to an address, not a person which is why you need to let them know you no longer want to pay for electricity at your old place.
  • You then need to open up a new account, this time entering the new address.
  • Your security deposit will be used to offset the final charges. Any credit left in your account may be transferred to other accounts with outstanding charges under your name before the final balance is refunded to you.
  • Any balance left over will be sent to you via a good old fashioned cheque or refunded by GIRO
Switching utilities with SP Group

Scenario 2: Moving house & continuing with an Open Electricity Market retailer

  • If you’re looking to continue with your energy retailer (i.e. not SP Group), please check with your provider to see what you need to do.
  • Companies like Ohm should allow you to do it all via your Ohm app. Other retailers such as iSwitch will ask for you to open a new account with SP Group then re-apply for your new plan via iSwitch.

If you want to make the switch from SP Group, Singapore has a number of alternative providers within the Open Electricity Market set-up to save you money. It also includes a price comparison tool.

Open Electricity Market comparison tool

Internet / broadband

Moving house can also be a good time to reassess your internet and broadband provider.

With many new companies and deals popping-up in Singapore, all of which offer high-speed and reliable broadband, it would be worth doing a quick search to make sure you’ve got the best deal.

Sites such as Seedly cut through the noise and provide you with the best deals and providers in Singapore.

Seedly broadband comparison

End of Lease Cleaning

When moving house in Singapore, most landlords and agents will require that you have your property spotless for when the next tenants moving in.

Having it professionally cleaned is one way to ensure that there is less grey area between you and your agent when it comes to getting your deposit back.

Curtain dry-cleaning is also typically part of this process. Depending on the supplier, this can be anywhere between 1 – 3 days to have this done.

While agents sometimes have their preferred cleaners, we recommend getting quotes from multiple providers so you know you’re getting good value for money.

Two popular cleaning services in Singapore are Clean on Demand and Helpling

  • For a Condo / HDB up to 700sqft, this will cost around $295
  • For bigger appartments around 1500sqft, expect to pay approx $550

We have a free comparison tool that allows you to compare different Singapore cleaners and instantly book them. It also has the ability to instantly add on services such as curtain cleaning

Moving in Singapore - Haulmate end of lease cleaners

Moving boxes and supplies

If you are moving with a professional moving company, chances are that they will provide you with boxes as part of you move.

If you are self-moving or need a quick top-up of boxes, you can often buy second hand boxes and packing supplies from Singapore wholesalers.

Some of our fav. moving boxes suppliers include Carton Box Supply and Used Carton Boxes. They have packages which include different size boxes, markers, packing paper and more. Once you place your order, you should receive your boxes within 3-5 days.

Or if you want to save time, you can buy moving boxes directly through Haulmate along with your other moving services. Easy!

Moving in Singapore - Haulmate order boxes

Storage space in Singapore

With the pandemic, many people have turned a bedroom into an office or moved house to allow for a better working from home space.

Rather than throwing away your loved furniture if it is not needed right now, you can rent a storage space to safe keep some of the excess luggage before settling in your new address

For long-term storage, you should choose a full-service storage company, which is often 10% cheaper. 

Further, it may be beneficial to go with a provider that offers both self-storage and valet storage. Beware of renting out a larger space, as you may end up paying for space you do not require. 

Top rated storage companies in Singapore include;

  • Spaceship Storage,
  • Work + Store
  • Extra Space Asia
  • StorHub
  • Lock and Store
  • BoxPark, among many others

If you are still wanting more information on storage spaces, please read our detailed guide to learn more.

3. Packing hacks when moving house 📦

No one has got time for packing! Let’s be honest, it sucks!

Don’t make it any worse by making some rookie packing mistakes. You’ll feel these mistakes more when it comes time for unpacking.

We’ve compiled some tips below to make sure your packing strategy is as efficient as possible.

  • Keep an inventory of all your items: Carefully categorize all your items by walking into each room of your house and assigning each product a category. Ensure that nothing is left out.
  • Declutter: To paraphrase Marie Kondo, if doesn’t bring you sparkling joy, toss it. This will save packing time and reduce moving costs
  • Measure twice, pack once: Get the floor plan of your new place and determine whether your furniture will fit ahead of time
  • Plan and label: You should have a rough idea of how you will arrange your new home. Group together items that go into the same room and label them accordingly.
  • Reuse boxes: Egg cartons for example can store jewellery. Towels can be used to wrap mirrors. What else can you re-use?
  • Moving day essentials: Have ready items you need from the moment you move in just in case there are any issues with the mover. Pack a bag like it’s an overnight trip. This can include clothes, toothbrush and toothpaste, toilet paper, phone and laptop chargers, medication and bedsheets ready for day 1 of your new place
Packing for your move

4. A few days before your move

Do your washing early
Ensure all your washing is done so that you can move in with fresh clothes, just in case there is a problem with the washing machine in the new place

Complete a detailed clean-up of your previous place and prepare any photos and documents to share with your existing landlord to ensure you get your full deposit back.

Adjust your shopping list
Stop buying perishable food. You do not want to travel with any remaining perishables, neither do you want to leave your existing place in a dirty state. A few days before the moving day, ensure you consume all perishables. You will restock on these once you get to the new home.

Scout out local restaurants
Book a restaurant near your new place so you have something to look forward to when you finish moving in and can start exploring your new area. This will also help with assimilation into your new area. You will not only start to feel at home, but also have something to look forward to once you are all finished moving!  

Update mailing address
Change mail address for any tax, work or other subscriptions you have. This may act as a helpful reminder for payments you need to cater to. Also, there may be some deposits you need to follow up on after you move as they may not have been processed on time at the time of your move.

Most importantly. Relax! Once you’ve moved in, it’s time to put the feet up and start to enjoy your new place! 

Make your move

It is true that moving can be an exciting yet a daunting experience. With the right information and quality tips to ease your moving, everything should fall right into its place.

If you are moving house in Singapore, be sure to check out Haulmate. We offer a simplified platform so that you can organise all your moving services in seconds, not hours.

Happy Moving!

Moving in Singapore - Organise your move in Singapore
August 8, 2021