a metal tower with cables running from it in front of an orange sunset

9 Things You Need To Know If You Are Moving In Orange County, CA

Congratulations on your upcoming move! We know this is an exciting and busy time in your life. We have compiled a list of all the to-do items that come along with moving. Things like starting and stopping the water service, registering children for school and changing your address.

The good news is—most of these tasks can be taken care of within a matter of keystrokes. Now that you’re here, let’s keep moving!

1. Change Your Address With USPS

an open mailbox with a letter in itFilling out your Change of Address Forms is quick and only takes a minute at USPS.com. You’ll need to know your old address, the new address and which date you’d like the mail to start forwarding.

For specific information, such as different people moving to different households or moving a business to a household, this Movers FAQ guide from the Postal Service will help.

Not all post offices will forward government checks, so be sure to notify the IRS of your address change. Note that it can take four to six weeks for the change of address to be fully processed.

To protect yourself and your personal information, you should also notify your financial institutions, credit card companies and medical providers.

2. How To Get A New California Driver’s License

a drawing of an ID card with a character in glasses, suit and tieIf you’re moving to a new address, your official ID and car registration will need to be updated with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Use California’s Change of Address system for a quick and easy online service. Note: This service works if you already have a California driver’s license and a Social Security Number.

If you are new to California, moving here from another state, use the New California Resident Portal from the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

Be sure to complete the change of address within 10 days of your move.

sticker that says "I Voted" in many languages3. Register to Vote

When you change your address and driver’s license, you will also want to update your voting registration. Use this link to register to vote in California.

4. Where To Drop Off Household Waste When You’re Moving

When you’re moving and packing, you will come across chemicals from your garage or workshop that may be toxic or hazardous to the environment.

For free, proper disposal of motor oil, car batteries, leftover paint or unused pesticides, Orange County Waste and Recycling has four collection centers. Hours are 9a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.

E-waste such as televisions, tablets, cell phones and computers can also be taken to one of the household waste recycling centers.

refuse bins in blue, black and brownFor household trash and recycling Orange County residents are served by CR&R in the cities of Aliso Viejo, Costa Mesa, Dana Point, Irvine, La Habra, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Lake Forest, Newport Beach, City of Orange, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Stanton and Tustin, as well as the communities of Newport Coast Rossmoor and the Unincorporated County.

For curbside pickup of trash recycling, place the containers out front by 6:30 a.m. on your pickup day.

  • The black container is for regular refuse.
  • The brown or blue container is for recyclables.
  • If you have a green container, it is for green/yard waste.

Waste Management also serves Orange County, in the cities of Irvine, Ladera Ranch, Laguna Beach, Mission Viejo, Santa Ana and the unincorporated canyon areas.

Republic Services offers one-time pickup for large items or recurring service. You can also rent a dumpster if you’re decluttering a home before a move. This link lists the California cities that Republic serves.

Some municipalities operate their own department of public works waste removal service.

5. Where To Find Services Agencies

The nonprofit organization 2-1-1 Orange County, a.k.a. the 211OC, has a database of health resources and human services providers in Orange County.

For free and low-cost services such as legal aid, family resources, addiction or substance abuse or food assistance, dial toll-free 2-1-1 or text your new zip code to 898211.

For referrals to free and low-cost services such as legal aid, family resources, addiction or substance abuse or food assistance, 2-1-1 can be accessed by phone or computer. Just dial toll-free 2-1-1.

Or you can text. Just text your new zip code to 898211 to be connected to a live person, between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday-Friday.

The Orange County Clerk’s office can help with property records, business and home-based business filings, vital records and more.

6. How To Find Internet And TV Subscriber Services in Orange County

a metal tower with cables running from it in front of an orange sunset

Photo by Jeff Turner, Flickr.

For Internet service providers, landline telephone service, or TV or cable, Southern Californians have a number of options.

To compare service providers and check their availability in your new location, visit https://www.cabletv.com/ca/orange

For cellular phone service: Most providers will let you change the address online.

7. Orange County Water Services and Water Zoning Districts

person washing hands under a faucetMoving to Orange County means you will also have the opportunity to choose an elected water district representative.

There are seven water divisions in the county. Find your Orange County water district here.

The Municipal Water District of Orange County serves all of Orange County through 28 retail water agencies (with the exception of the cities of Anaheim, Fullerton and Santa Ana).

8. Gas And Energy Services In Orange County

Southern California Edison offers service to most of Orange County. Check this map to see if you are in the service area. If you’re moving, you can schedule a request to start stop or transfer service at this link.

SoCal Gas serves approximately 24,000 square miles, including most of Orange County. See if your city is on the list. If you already use SoCal Gas, use this form to transfer service from elsewhere in California. 

9. Orange County School Districts

california school

Orange County has 28 public school districts. To enroll, visit this list of districts and find yours:

Moving is a process. But with each task accomplished, your dream is closer to reality. Refer to this list over the next several weeks to make sure that you have completed all the tasks. In turn, you will get to know your new neighborhood and embrace your new community.