Whether moving down the street or across the state, the process of moving is a stressful experience. While there is no ideal time to move, moving in the winter months in cold weather climates poses additional, unique challenges that moving in the summer does not present.
Winter weather can be unpredictable from day to day, hour to hour, and you never know what kind of conditions you will have to deal with when the big day arrives. If you have planned a move in the dead of winter, the following tips will help ease the stress levels and make the process go more smoothly, efficiently, and, most importantly, quicker.
1. Expect the Unexpected
As you plan for your move, build in extra time account for delays caused by inclement weather. Snow on the ground will slow down the physical movement of your items on and off the moving truck, and traffic will be hampered by snow, ice, and winter storms.
There are also fewer hours of daylight in the winter, so it is highly recommended that you get as early a start as possible to maximize the sun’s light and whatever additional warmth it may provide.
We all have up-to-the-minute local weather reports with live satellite images on our phones. Keep checking for forecast updates that could have an effect on your move.
2. Get and Stay Organized
While being organized is the key to any move, it is especially important when moving in the winter when you have to be ready to make adjustments on the fly to account for possible changes in the weather. Keeping your boxes and other items organized and properly labeled will help to maximize the number of trips you will have to make.
Make sure to separate and organize your most important daily life items, such as medications, changes, and layers of clothes, computers and other sensitive electronics, and any documentation related to the move or your new residence. Extra care should also be given to your most personal and valuable irreparable items, like artwork, family heirlooms, and photo albums.
3. Protect Your Floors
Moving is a dirty job that is made much worse by snow, ice, slush, dirt, mud, and salt that winter brings. Putting down protective flooring sheets should be standard for any reputable moving company, but the more you put down, the better protected your new home’s floors become.
4. Make Plans For Pets and Kids
The only thing less helpful than kids during a move is having your pets underfoot during the process. Anxiety levels are high, to begin with, and having to tend to your kids and pets in the middle of moving will not prove to be a pleasant or efficient experience for any of you. If a family member or friend can watch both your animals and your children, that is the best solution. If not, boarding your dogs and cats for the day may be well worth the investment for a smoother, faster, and less stressful move.
5. Shovel, Salt All Pathways
Snow and ice on walkways and driveways can be treacherous. Especially in extreme temperatures and following snow or ice storms, make sure all pathways at the old and new places are thoroughly shoveled and salted to ensure the safety of you and your belongings.
6. Extra Blankets, Towels, Sheets
It could be a crisp sunny winter morning when you are loading up the truck, but the skies can open and dump inches of snow by the time you and your belongings get to the final destination. Having towels, blankets, and sheets handy can be used to protect your items as you move them in.
7. Choose The Right Shoes
Make sure you have non-slip, boots, or winter shoes for the best traction when moving on slippery surfaces. An extra pair of socks will also keep your toes toasty in the most extreme weather conditions.
8. Gloves and More Gloves
Stashing an extra pair or two of gloves will allow you to swap out cold, wet gloves for dry, warm ones midway through your move. Not only will it allow you to keep your hands warmer, but it also will help to keep a better grip on the items you are moving.
9. Double Bubble Wrap Avoids Stumble Trouble
Liberal application of bubble wrap and other packing insulation will help guard against trips, stumbles, and falls caused by wet, slick conditions. Glassware can also become more frigid in colder temperatures and is more easily broken. Thoroughly packing fragile items will keep them warmer and safer.
10. Stay Flexible
Even the most efficient and well-planned out moves in ideal weather conditions will have things that go wrong and take longer than initially thought or planned. The unpredictability of winter weather means that the entire scope and execution of your move can change in a minute. Snowstorms make moving challenging, but the aftereffects can be just as stifling and delaying. Taking chances in inclement weather is flirting with a disaster that can derail the entire moving process, or worse. If conditions worsen and roads become icy and dangerous, it is always best to wait it out, even if it adds to the cost of the move.
11. Tip Your Movers
Winter conditions mean your hired movers are working much harder than they would in warmer weather, usually for the same amount of pay. Make sure you let them know how much you appreciate them, both in words and in a generous tip at the end of the day.
Winter Moving Has Its Perks
Moving is rarely fun, and most people dread the process, no matter how much of an upgrade the new place is from where they are now. Moving in the dead of winter can pose additional challenges for you and your movers, but there are advantages to winter moving. Mover rates are typically lower in the slower, as moving companies are generally slower in the winter. When booking a mover for your move in the winter months, you will likely find better deals and a more open schedule with more options to choose from.
Get Moving with Best Movers
Best Movers offers efficient and affordable moving services in Northern Virginia. No matter the season you need to move, our movers get the job done right, right on time. Contact a member of our team today for a free quote!