Winter is here, and you are in a hurry to move. What should you do? Snow, ice and cold weather are not ideal conditions for relocation, I’ll give you that. But should you cancel your move and wait for the spring? Not necessary, especially not if you have to move on a short notice. Besides, winter moving has its positive sides. Prices are lower and it’s way easier to schedule moving. Hence, check out some useful winter moving tips.
Winter moving requires a bit more preparation and organization since you won’t have the luxury of spending too much time outside. Therefore, better try to be as fast and efficient as possible. Finding affordable movers is very important, and you need a company you can rely on. Since winter is a low season in the moving business, the price probably won’t be a problem. But you really need to plan every detail, because your things can get damaged more easily during winter than the rest of the year.
Watch the weather forecast
moving brings snow, ice and storms. That is why it is very important to watch the forecast every day. If you have some concerns the weather will shut down roads or hinder your movers, you should talk to them about it. It’s always better to postpone the move than get caught in a blizzard. If you are moving from or to NYC, you are probably aware of the heavy winters this city has. Hence, better get ready for your NY move because, besides the weather, you need to think about the traffic, too.
Warm up your home-to-be
This is something you really shouldn’t forget, because if you wait until you arrive at your new place to turn the heat up, it will be freezing the whole night. Prevent ice dams and cold feet by thinking ahead. Make sure that all utilities have been set-up and are fully functioning. Just to be on the safe side, you can even turn on the heat and hydro a couple of days before your arrival. This is a smart thing to do whenever you are moving but especially when the cold winds are blowing and the days are much shorter and darker.
Make sure to clear the snow from walkways and driveways, not only in front of your old place but in front of the new one as well, if you have a chance. If you’re moving locally, visiting your new place the day before the move shouldn’t be a problem for you. This way, you can make sure that the walkways are clear and free of ice. If it’s necessary, you can also spread some salt or sand around. And if you are moving a long distance and you are not able to visit your new home before the move-in date, maybe you can ask your agent or property manager to check it for you.
Additionally, you should make sure there is a parking spot available for the moving truck. This may require asking your new neighbors for help or even hiring someone to clear the driveway of snow.
Watch your steps
Unfortunately, winter brings all kinds of mud, snow and slush. This means that not only you may need to watch your steps on the slippery road, but you also need to protect your floors. You don’t want to balance your moving boxes on ice, so hiring a professional probably never sounded better. Furthermore, you don’t want the movers to track the dirt and debris into your new home. Even if you are planning a renovation, mud is not something you want on your first day at your new place. And if you want to go with remodeling experts, winter is the perfect time for that, too. Everyone is leaving that for spring or summer, making winter an off-season time for remodeling.
You probably don’t want dirt at your old home either, since you want to leave it in a good condition. Therefore, make sure to protect your carpets and floors by covering them with plastic drop cloths. And, remember to anchor them safely, so the movers won’t trip on the edges.
Coffee or tea?
This may sound trivial, but you should really have some hot drinks on hand during winter moving. Whether you are having a DIY move or hiring professionals, make sure you have hot liquids available. Movers or other helpers would also appreciate a cup of hot chocolate, tea, or coffee. Additionally, you should wear something warm, comfortable and waterproof. You don’t want to travel for an hour with wet feet or catch a cold while loading your belongings. And having extra mittens and hats is a good idea, too.
Winter moving surprises
What if a winter storm blows up and shuts down the roads? Well, you should have a backup plan. There is always a chance you need to reschedule your move and that is a better option than to endanger everyone. Most noteworthy, check what the moving company policy is in terms of winter conditions. Some movers are used to winter moving and may not be willing to delay the move. But if they do, and if you postpone relocation, make sure you speak to your real estate agent or landlord to see if you can stay a few extra days at your current place.
Also, it is very important to plan your travel route carefully. Make sure you know it ahead and to contact the local authorities to check if the highways are open and safe to travel on. Each state or province has its own regulations and phone number with regular updates provided. It’s also a good idea to have some overnight accommodation address in case you need to stop. Most importantly, be prepared for all the surprises winter moving can bring. The more you plan ahead, the less you have to worry about.