I’m moving house! As you may know, I live in Cambridge at the moment. I’ve been here for almost 20 years but I’ve decided it’s time to move back to Nottinghamshire to be nearer my parents. Keep reading to learn some useful vocabulary about moving house!
I’ve been thinking about moving for a few years now but I finally made the decision to actually do it sometime last year. Now I work from home, I can live anywhere!
The first thing I did was to get rid of some clutter. I gave away a few things to charity shops and threw away some more. It took a long time to declutter the house because I hadn’t done it for a long time!
Then I asked three estate agents to come to the house to give me a valuation. After choosing the best estate agent, my house went on the market. Lots of people came to view the property and quite a lot of them liked it and put in an offer.
The next step was to contact my solicitor. She sent me loads of forms to fill in and send back to her. I also started looking at removal companies and getting quotes.
It’s now about a month until I move out of this house and I’ve started packing. The house is full of boxes and bubble wrap! I’m moving into temporary accommodation, which is smaller than this house, so half of my things are going into a storage unit.
I wasn’t planning to buy a new house just yet but was going to wait until I was in Nottinghamshire. However, last week I saw a perfect house online and went to look round. It’s exactly the kind of house I was looking for and in a great location so I made an offer and it was accepted! Also there is no chain so that’s good.
A few days before moving house, contracts are exchanged. After that, everyone is committed. I don’t know how it works in other countries but in England, nothing is certain until then. Either the buyer or the seller can change their mind so it’s a stressful time of waiting and hoping nothing goes wrong.
On completion day, the money is transferred from the buyer to the seller and the buyer gets the keys to their new house! They can move in and unpack! The whole process from making an offer to completion can take three months or more.
move house / move = leave one house and go to live in another house
(Note that in English we say “move” or “move house”. We don’t say “move my house” because that sounds like physically moving the building, which is impossible! We don’t say “change house” either. To change the house means to decorate or alter the house in some way.)
move from = leave a city or country (E.g. I’m moving from Cambridge.)
move to = start living in a new city or country (E.g. I’m moving to Nottinghamshire.)
move in / into = start living in a new house (E.g. When are you moving in? When are you moving into your new house?)
move out / out of = leave your home (E.g. I’m moving out in July. I’m moving out of this house in July.)
clutter = unnecessary things that make the place look untidy
give away = give something to somebody without asking for money
charity shop = a shop that sells second hand goods and uses the money to help others
throw away = put something into the rubbish
declutter = to tidy up and get rid of things you don’t want
estate agent = a person who helps others to buy, sell or rent a house
valuation = how much money the agent thinks your house will sell for
go on the market = become available for others to buy
view / look round = to visit a house to decide if you are interested in buying it
put in / make an offer = to say how much you are willing to pay for a house
solicitor = a type of lawyer who mostly works in an office and deals with legal documents
form = a printed paper with empty spaces to write information in
fill in/out = to write the necessary information in the spaces on a form
removal company/firm = the company that moves your furniture and things to a new home
quote = an estimated price for a job or service
pack = to put everything you need into boxes and/or suitcases
box = a container made out of cardboard
bubble wrap = plastic packaging with pockets of air which you can wrap things in to protect them so they don’t break
storage unit = a place which you can rent to keep things that you don’t need
location = place
chain = if person A wants to buy B’s house and B wants to buy C’s house and so on, this is a chain
exchange contracts = the buyer signs a contract which goes to the seller’s solicitor and the seller signs a contract that goes to the buyer’s solicitor
completion day = the final day when you can move in or move out of a home
unpack = take everything out of boxes and suitcases
Please note that I’m English and therefore this is British English. There are some differences in American English and I may not know all of them. I do know that instead of “estate agent”, Americans say “real estate agent” or “realtor”. They don’t have solicitors because their legal system is different so they would go to a lawyer.
If you would like to know how to improve your English vocabulary and how to remember new words, this e-book will help you:
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