Make sure you have all of your belongings before moving out of an apartment.

If you've got all of your boxes packed, the movers are on the way and you've leased a great new apartment, it may seem as if you're all set to move into your new place. However, in the tumult of clearing out, people tend to leave a few things behind. Often, people forget coffee makers, cleaning supplies and the contents of their medicine cabinets. Not only will you miss these items when you start unpacking in your new pad, but also leaving stuff behind could incur penalty fees from your previous landlord. Don't lose money buying new things or paying unnecessary charges, here are five things to do before you move:

1. Forward your mail 
If you receive bills in the mail or other important documents, make sure to update your address so that your mail doesn't end up getting tossed in the recycling bin. Even if you pay online, odds are you'll still get the occasional snail mail from the cable company, your bank or even a relative. You'll also want to alert your bank so that there's no confusion when you start using your credit card in another locale. 

2. Pick up your dry-cleaning 
You'll be kicking yourself if you move far away and leave an expensive suit, dress or other clothes at the dry-cleaner. Of course, it's important to do this with any items you may have out for repair as well. Make a list of any place you may have things that need to be collected before you move. Do you have shoes out for repair? Did your next door neighbor borrow your waffle iron and never return it? Are your golf clubs out being re-gripped? Making a checklist of all these stops will ensure that you remember to run these errands before you leave. 

3. Don't forget the shed, garage or storage area 
Don't forget to clean out spaces outside of your apartment. Make sure to clean out a storage locker or maintenance shed where you may keep tools or other possessions. Also remember to pack any items you may have left in a common space such as a community garden. It's important to pack these items early as well so that space can be accounted for them in the move. 

4. Don't leave behind hidden valuables 
There's the old joke about hiding money in your mattress, but in some cases this is a reality. If you've hidden jewelry, money, important documents or other valuables around your apartment, make sure to locate it before moving on to your next living space. It'll be hard to come back and explain to new tenants why you need to yank up the floorboards or dig through their cabinets. Save yourself from this problem by safely locating and packing your valuables beforehand. 

5. Make special arrangements for pets and plants 
Of course, no one expects you to try and pack up your dog or cat in a box during your move. However, remember that your pet will not only need extra room during the trip, but also may require special arrangements. As far as plants go, double check with your moving company to ensure that they will transport plants. In some cases, house plants may not be allowed to cross state lines, so don't assume the movers will just do it for you. Furthermore, plants are susceptible to shock during a move, and being jostled around and exposed to changes in temperature and sun exposure may kill them.