Moving Out

Your current landlord will be a reference for future potential landlords, so it is important to take the moving out process seriously.

Dispose of Unwanted Items

Need to get rid of a bunch of stuff before you move out? Check out our tips on disposing of unwanted furniture and other items properly!

It is against the law and disrespectful to a neighborhood to improperly dispose of items you don’t want to take with you when you move out. Follow our tips for proper disposal and make sure you are being a caring neighbor and responsible citizen!

Move Out Madness

Have stuff you need to get rid of before you leave town? Bring it to Move Out Madness! Every year at the beginning of June in the York, Happy Valley and Sehome Neighborhoods, Zero Waste Western and the Campus Community Coalition host a donation drive and garbage collection site free for students.

Change Your Address

When you move to a new address, you need to notify the post office by filling out a change of address form, which can be found online or at your local post office. For more information, visit the US Postal Service website.

Don't forget to provide your school with your current contact information! This information is critical in an emergency and also allows your school to provide you with important information for your off-campus life.

Steps for WWU students to update address info:

  • Go to and sign in to “My Western”
  • Click on the Web4U icon at the top of your page
  • In Web4U, use the “Personal Info” tab to update your contact information

Check Your Lease

Review your lease to determine what you can expect at move out. Familiarize yourself with what part of your initial move in deposit was refundable (a damage deposit) vs. non-refundable (a cleaning deposit).

Review the move in inspection, note any damages you will be held responsible for and talk to your roommates about how to handle this fairly. You can’t be held responsible for “normal wear and tear” on your unit, but you will have to pay to repair damages. Have a conversation with your landlord if you need to discuss damages and repairs.

Talk to your landlord about the move out process. Find out how to return the keys and make sure you agree on the exact date you will be completely out of the unit. After you move out, your landlord has 14 days to send you all of your deposit or a letter telling you why they are not giving some or all of it back. They must send this letter to the most recent address they have for you. (RCW 59.18.280.) When you move out, give your landlord your new address, or make sure your mail is being forwarded so that you will get the deposit or letter.

Clean Your Rental Unit Thoroughly

In future renting reference checks, your landlord will report on how you left the unit when you moved out. A good rule of thumb is to leave the unit in the same (or better) condition that it was in when you moved in.

Sometimes it’s easier to thoroughly clean a place once all the furniture is out. Plan enough time to get the cleaning done and work with your roommates about a fair distribution of the work.

Contact Utilities

Contact any utilities that you put in your name while you were renting this unit. Arrange to either disconnect the service, get it out of your name and back in the landlord’s name, or ask if you can move your service to your new location. If you don’t do this, you might still be accumulating a bill at your old rental even after you’ve left it. Visit our Moving In page for more information about specific utilities in our area.

Page Updated 11.22.2017