Pre-Move Duties

Delegate responsibilities to your partner and other family members. Have regular family conferences and discuss progress and problems. Planned To Do Lists will assist you to keep track and serve as a reminder and set a time frame according to your needs.    

Home to Sell or Rent Out

You may just have to terminate your lease and arrange for cleaning after you have moved out. But as a homeowner there is more to consider. Generally it does not pay to sell your home only to find out on your return that you cannot afford to pay for a new home as prices have increased sharply.  If it is obvious that you will return to the same place - keep the house and rent it out.  
  • ● Assess your tax requirement situation
  • ● Find out about the duties of a landlord
  • ● Consult a lawyer on the contract
  • ● Consult your insurance company on insurance on special covers required as a landlord
  If you take in tenants we suggest you appoint a management company to take care of your home and the tenant's needs. Friends, neighbors or relatives are seldom prepared to commit themselves for several years.  
  • ● Take extra care when fixing the duration of the tenancy. You may want to come back earlier or later than anticipated so extra clauses have to be included in the tenancy agreement.
  • ● You should work together with local estate agents and relocation companies to market your house. Check expatriate web sites if you live in an international area and place an ad in their chat rooms. Do not reveal your address on the Internet as not to attract suspicious characters!
  • ● Start a box file on your desk titled "home" which you fill with guarantees of appliances and other documents and information about your home for the buyer of your home or your tenant and the management company.
  • ● Check if any renovation and home improvement have to be done before your tenant can move in. For a list of duties in connection with your home see the To Do List Home.
  • ● If you do go overseas for a period shorter than a year, you may wish to keep your home vacant, as the short time may not justify the hassle.
  • ● You may have to pay higher insurance premiums for your non-occupied premises.
  • ● Do not forget to inform the local police of your absence in this case.
  • ● If you leave your home non-occupied, ask someone to keep an eye on it, take care of the garden, perform your duties as the owner (e.g. snow blowing).
Look for tenant       
Look for buyer
Look for management company
Fill in Home-Search Assistant
Book transition home in home country
Decide on estate agent
Decide on management company
Finalize renting/selling your house
Book cleaning and repair after move out
Prepare home file for management company or buyer/tenant
Employ gardener, management company etc. when you rent out home
Confirm booking of transition homes and abroad
Have utilities cut off day after move
  The following duties of a managing agent for your rented home should be put in writing :  
  • ● Advice landlord on calculating yields and returns and on tax advantages.
  • ● Advice on how to present the property to attract tenants.
  • ● Advice on current legislation on safety standards in a rented house.
  • ● Taking up references and vetting tenants.
  • ● Draw up the tenancy agreement, manage insurance, council tax etc., change utilities to the tenant's name and set up an inventory.
  • ● Visit the tenant regularly and arrange and supervise necessary repairs.
  • ● Checking the property once the tenant terminates the lease and vacates the property.
  • ● Organize repairs and take care of financial claims once the property is vacated.

Car Sale

Sell your car if you stay longer than a year as it loses value during your absence and storage is too expensive. You might leave a car at home base but you need to have it insured and ready to be driven by you during home leaves.  
  • ● Get a prepared sales contract and prepare all letters to inform your insurance company etc. on the sale to fill in by hand at the last minute.
  • ● Usually cars will be kept until the last days. Some dealers specialize in expatriates. They guarantee a certain (lower) purchase price and let you have the car until the last minute.
  • ● If you sell you car earlier rent a car and/or book transport (mini vans) to the airport. You may need two taxis for extra baggage! Use the To Do List Car to keep track.
  • ● Make sure to keep the motor insurance policy to prove your no claims bonus for your next car insurance
  • ● Have ownership documentation, insurance certificates and everything related to your car sorted in your car box file to pass on to the buyer of your car.
Ask car insurer for no-claims bonus level statement Place in box for hand luggage!
Find out value of cars
Start marketing your cars, get sales contract forms See templates in Assistance Directory for flyers
Sell cars and notify insurer, tax de- partment etc.
Book a car for rent and/or a taxi to the airport. Think large!

Partner's Career

Spouses will need to inform their present employer about the move and give notice to resign in a timely manner. Remember to ask for references, and consider stopping work early, as that may reduce relocation stress. Be prepared to take time out from your career until you have settled in the new country. However, prepare your career file by copying, translating and certifying your references, diplomas, etc. and place them in a file to hand carry over on your flight, as well as sending another copy with your household goods for backup. Having one copy with you is advisable, as opportunities sometimes arise earlier than expected. Many spouses have sworn they would not work in a foreign country, but situations change - their partner's assignment is extended and they stay overseas several years longer than expected, children go off to school, intriguing opportunities pop up, etc. If your situation changes, then you could end up scrambling to get copies of your relevant documents. So, even if you don't plan on working, having your job related information available "just in case" makes sense.   On the other hand, if you already know you are serious about working, find out about the availability of business attire in the host country. Women larger than a size eight may have trouble buying clothes in Southeast Asian countries. (Men have had difficulty finding shoes larger than a size 10). You may be able to have clothes tailored, but we recommend buying a contingent home to save the initial hassle.  
Set up your career file
Have photos taken for job search
Buy tropic suitable business clothes
Inform schools and ask for school records to be send to new school
Inform new schools by email, follow-up by application, check money transfer
Arrange doctors’ appointments
Discuss problems with students and boarders staying back
Find a place for the kids for the last three days
Arrange for mail redirecting
Terminate utilities contracts/Pay final bills
Terminate newspapers and magazines
Cancel club memberships etc.
Cancel telephone and internet
Cancel home deliveries

Schools, Students, Boarders

When informing the schools about your move, ask for scholastic records to be sent to your new school. You may suggest passing them on yourself together with the application forms, to keep track and speed up the process.  
  • ● Send additional class workbooks and as much information you have about your children to the school to help the new teachers with placement.
  • ● Inform the new chosen schools in the host country first by e-mail about your application and send application forms with the payments required as soon as possible.
  • ● You need to inform your employers about application fees required and make sure the company makes payments in time. Once your school has accepted the children, other fees need to be paid. Schools know about the relocation problems involved but generally it is the money, which guarantees your place. Keep track!
  • ● If there is another language for your children to learn, you may decide to start tuition right away as to prepare them and connect them psychologically to the host country.
  • ● If you have decided to leave a child back home in a boarding school or as a university student, you need to discuss their concerns and worries and address them accordingly.
  • ● Appoint relatives or friends to be surrogate parents and guardians and make sure boarders and students move to their new home before your actual move.
  • ● Supply relevant emergency and contact numbers and possibly a PC or laptop with Internet connection for keeping in touch via messenger services or e-mail.
  • ● Check the status of citizenship of your children with the authorities of the host country and apply for the necessary documents to permit their entry to visit you.
  • ● If under-aged children travel unaccompanied they may need a written permission of the parents or guardians to cross borders.


Now is the time to book and confirm flights, your temporary transition home and quarantine or kennel facilities if your pet comes along. Make sure you have it all in writing and we suggest you keep copies of faxes and e-mails in your hand luggage.   Book your flights.
  • ● Have a look at the aircraft seat plan used when choosing your long distance flight seat. A seat not too close to the toilets and with the movie screen visible does make a difference!
  • ● Book special food (vegetarian?) and inform the airline if you fly with a baby to reserve you special seats.
  • ● Try to book a night flight as the adjustment to Southeast Asia will be easier and the flight appears to be shorter.
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