THESE are the top 10 things that could go wrong when moving house

Not that you need more reasons to stress about moving house

Moving house stress is the worst, we all know how an emotional day of saying goodbye to your old home can quickly turn into a nightmare. On the day in question not only is the removal van late, your favourite chair has lost a leg but you’ve already scratched your new walls. Moving house stress is definitely a thing

Related: We reveal what's costing homeowners £3,500 when moving house

If you are throwing a tantrum believing that know one else has suffered from this moving day fails, then think again. According to research by Happy Beds, over half of homeowners have experienced these stress-inducing fails.

Research carried out among 2,000 recent movers revealed among these fails one in three have had furniture delivered only to find it won’t fit through the door. A quarter of people have had a box break on them, spilling its contents everywhere.

brick wall with window and plant with shrubs

(Image credit: future PLC/David Giles)

Packing up the old house was revealed as the single-worst part of moving home, followed by the stress leading up to moving day itself. One in three admitted they couldn’t stand the admin involved with changing addresses on forms and setting up new bills.

Unsurprisingly, wardrobes were nominated the single worst item to move from one house to another, followed by sofas and delicate items like vases or mirrors.

Unfortunately, these don’t always reach the destination in one piece. The study found that a third of respondents found pieces of furniture broken in transit once they reach the other side.

pink wall with wooden table and tea cup

(Image credit: future PLC/David Giles)

However, possibly the worst moving day joy-kill was that one in 10 said they had lost the keys to their new property before they even arrived at their new home. Twenty-four per cent also found out too late that the previous owners hadn’t finished moving out.

If you are due to move house and are anxiously reading this, then it won’t surprise you to hear that one in eight movers suffered a sleepless night ahead of their move. But the sleepless nights continued after moving day.

The study found that it took an average of four nights before new homeowners got proper restful nights sleep in their new home.

kitchen area with white wall tiles and plates

(Image credit: future PLC/Fiona Walker-Arnott)

“Moving home can be an incredibly exciting time – but it’s also extremely stressful. It’s clear that this stress is affecting peoples’ sleep,’ says Joy Richards, spokesperson for Happy Beds. ‘It’s really important, before moving, to plan well in advance and get a great night’s sleep before the big day to yourself in the best frame of mind.’

‘But many Brits will be sleep-deprived and completely stressed out by the time that first box is loaded into the van, so finding ways to take the pressure off and reduce the possibility of catastrophe are vital,’ she adds. ‘However, occasionally accidents do happen – so even if a beloved heirloom gets smashed, try not to lose too much sleep over it.’

bedroom with white wall and cushions on bed

(Image credit: future PLC/David Giles)

Delegating tasks to supportive friends and family is an effective way of helping moves go smoothly explains Mick Fallon, director and conveyancing solicitor at Howells Solicitors.

‘The secret to minimising stress when moving home is to make the process as simple and straightforward as possible, from beginning to end, having the support of people you can rely on can make the difference – taking the worry out of this exciting period of your life,’ he says.

‘If you can relax in the knowledge that the exchange and completion is in safe hands and will go through without a hitch, that is one less concern off your plate and you can concentrate on packing and unpacking again,’ he adds

Related: The cost of moving house – and how you can make savings

Have you ever experienced any of the most common moving fails below?

Top 10 causes of moving house stress

1. Damaged furniture
2. Scratched walls
3. Not being able to fit an item through the door
4. Not being able to manoeuvre furniture up/down the stairs
5. Not being able to manoeuvre furniture around a corner
6. Boxes breaking and the contents spilling out everywhere
7. The previous residents not clearing up - or leaving things behind
8. The house not being ready
9. Not having everything packed up in time
10. Delicate possessions breaking
11. Removal van showing up late
12. Lost boxes
13. Feeling ill on the big day
14. Friends who were meant to help cancelled last minute
15. Losing keys
16. Car/van breaking down
17. Problems picking up a rental van
18. Removal van getting completely lost
19. Keys breaking in the door
20. Getting lost and not being able to find the new home.

Rebecca Knight
Deputy Editor, Digital

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.