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Moving

Perks of Moving in Winter & How to Survive

Box Snow Angel_Moving in Winter

Moving in winter is not such a crazy idea if you are living in sunny southern California or Florida or somewhere in between, but for a large part of the United States most people would do anything to avoid moving in the winter. Frigid temperatures, snow, and ice do not make for the best moving conditions and put you on the receiving end of everyone's sympathies. However, there are perks to be enjoyed when making your move this time of year. There are also some things to think about that you would not have to consider if you were moving in warmer weather.

First, the perks of a winter move. Putting up with the inconvenience of a winter move could save you cash month after month from now on, particularly if you are a renter. Not only is apartment turnover slow in the winter, but it is also the slow season for the moving and storage industry. Translation: you are more likely to be on the receiving end of lower prices, willingness to negotiate, more inventory availability, and more attention.

With most Americans moving in the summer months, the cost of a move is at its highest. The law of supply and demand plays a large part in the price of your moving costs. If your move dates are flexible, hold off a few months and wait out the most demanding season for moving. As with moving services, storage facilities have a similar busy season. Storage space availability is higher in the late fall and winter because most people have completed their move already and college students are back in school having taken their belongings out of summer storage.

Moving when the temperature falls also means that moving consultants will have more time to spend with you to work on a deal. Movers and drivers tend to be less pressed for time in the winter since they are not hurrying to another move or wiped out from a previous move.

Should you be brave enough to take on the challenge of a winter move, here are 8 tips to remember that will help you survive:

  • Recruit Help
    Hiring a professional moving company is the safest way to go and saves your friends and family members from a greater risk of injury due to slippery conditions and cold temperatures, but if you are a do-it-yourselfer and willing to risk it, be sure to reward your helpers generously.
  • Clear the Way
    If your area gets snowfall, clear the walkways of snow and ice or other debris at both your old home and your new home prior to attempting to move anything. This will save time and if you hired movers, money. Some moving companies will clear pathways, but that cost is most likely passed on to the customer. It is worth the time it takes to clear the area to be safe and surefooted when moving your possessions. Keep salt and shovels on hand in case you need to clear any paths during the move, too.
  • Dress for the Occasion
    Dress in layers so you can shed clothing if you start to overheat. Just because it is cold out doesn't mean you won't sweat or get hot. Be sure you have gloves that enable you to get a good grip on what you are carrying.
  • Protect Furniture from Moisture
    If rain or snow is forecast for your moving day, having stretch wrap on hand to wrap your furniture is a great idea. Stretch wrapping furniture with furniture pads will keep moisture out as well as offer an extra layer of protection from scratches or punctures.
  • Protect the Interior
    Trekking in and out of a house or apartment with wet, salty shoe bottoms can wreak havoc on the floors of your old home and your new home. Protect carpets, tile, vinyl, or hardwood floors with used cardboard boxes cut and taped down in high traffic areas. There is also this wonderful stuff called carpet protection tape available for purchase at most home improvement stores. Have old towels or rags on hand to wipe up any mess on hard surfaced floors as soon as possible.
  • Keep Warm from the Inside Out
    Keep plenty of water, coffee, tea, and hot chocolate on hand. Staying hydrated and taking a break to get warm is critical to getting through the move. Simply having a door person to control the opening and closing of the door helps keep the inside as warm as possible.
  • Drive Carefully
    Take your time driving. Navigating slippery roads with a loaded rented moving truck is challenging even for the most seasoned road warriors.
  • Be Smart
    Safety is most important. If conditions are not conducive to attempting the move, in a blizzard, for example, it probably is not smart to continue that day. Make some phone calls and reschedule with landlords, rental companies, and moving companies. Most will be understanding and accommodate your needs.

Have you moved in the winter? What is your advice to others braving the weather to make a move?

 

Sources:

http://www.mymovingreviews.com/move/moving-in-off-peak-season http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/my-money/2013/12/18/6-tips-for-moving-during-the-winter

http://www.angieslist.com/articles/how-prepare-cold-weather-move.htm

http://blog.twomenandatruck.com/2014/12/08/moving-in-a-winter-wonderland-save-time-and-money/

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/want-a-better-deal-on-a-new-apartment-move-now-214067

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The Storage Queens

We know a thing or two about moving. Together, we share the best tips in organizing, storage, navigating your city, and more!

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13 Comments

  • I have moved a couple of times before and we did avoid winter completely before making any plans. Nevertheless, after reading this article, I have to say that prior careful planning is necessary to ensure that your move would be a breeze regardless of what the weather is. What is really essential is to ensure your boxes stay dry and insulated properly in order to stay in good condition even after removal.

  • Do give yourself plenty of time if moving in the winter. There are just too many unforeseen situations that can spring up at this time of the year. Start by packing and organising some of your stuff into storage boxes, and arranged for them to be moved first.

  • Good point about moving in the winter!  I never thought about the potential discounts you could get from moving companies by moving during the slow season.  They will also be better prepared for protecting the furniture from moisture with tarps and blankets I bet.
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  • And if I may add – moving in the winter also allow you to have more hands to help! Not many people are doing anything during the winter (unlike in summer months where everyone is just somewhere!); hence, they might be welcoming to have something to do (I know of some people who do). Just make sure that they are ‘dressed for the occasion', too.

  • I didn’t think that there would be any perks to moving during the winter. However, I guess that you are right when you say that the prices should be lower during that time of the year. After all, moving companies aren’t going to be as busy. I’ll have to show this to my wife. Maybe our next move will be during a winter month. http://www.rt22selfstorage.com

  • I have never consider moving in the winter before. However it seems like there are a lot of good reason to do so. It’s cool that the prices of apartments drop in the winter. It seems like that would be a good reason to move. You would also have a lot of options for moving companies. levy.redfox195@gmail.com

  • I need to store some things soon.  These things will be stored year round.  If I wrap them on these pallets, will the wrapping material keep them safe during the winter?  The last thing I want is to have the weather wreak my stuff.
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  • To answer your question, I have never moved in the winter before, but it sounds like it isn’t too bad if you’re prepared. It’s mostly the cold and snow I would be worried about, especially with moving things like couches and beds. However, I might be moving here in a few months in the Fall, so I’m hoping your post holds true that moving slows down a little bit in the fall and winter months! It was quite a hassle to find a place in the spring! http://www.fjjmoving.com/1852.html

  • We always try to move in the summer. It just makes sense to us. As you said, the colder months can make things very difficult. Nobody wants to move during those months. However, it can be necessary at times. These tips will definitely help anyone that is required to move during the winter. http://www.lisarowselfstorage.com.au

  • The best tip you gave by far was to drive carefully. If you need to move your things without professional help like most people, then you’ll be driving around big vehicle, packed with a lot of heavy furniture, boxes, and other things that you don’t want damaged. Most people don’t have a lot of experience driving these vehicles, and chances are that you fall in that category as well. Hopefully people will understand that and realize that it means they have to be exponentially more careful than you would normally be when driving your vehicle every day.
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  • I have never really thought about the benefits of moving in the winter. It is interesting to know that by doing this you can actually save money. You would definitely have to bundle up for something like this, but it could end up being well worth it in the long run. Moving is already really stressful, so you want to make sure that you make it as easy as possible.

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  • My family is moving in a few months to a different state for my husbands job. I am a little nervous about moving so close to winter so hopefully these tips will prove useful. The part about hiring movers seems like a really good option. I would be to nervous with my husband trying to drive in snowy weather, which is a possibility. http://www.canadianvanlines.com

  • It really sounds like moving in the winter isn’t has hard as it sounds. I personally really like the idea of making sure to be careful to ensure that you are able to be safe as well and keep everything secure and taken care of. That just seems like something that can be a great help for those who are in need of some kind of emergency move. Hopefully this will be something that will be helpful for those who are thinking about moving in the winter and don’t know where to start. Thank you for sharing. 

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