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Winter relocation 101

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The winter season is often the best time for a family to relocate due to the low service demand, thus decreasing the moving costs. Even though you most likely will save money on your relocation, you will have to put in extra effort to prepare for the actual move because of the difficult and cold weather. There are several important details that individuals must consider and arrange while planning for their move.

Don’t be afraid to schedule a winter move

First things first: know that moving in the winter is not a terrible idea. The reason for that is that most companies have winter rates and summer rates, and you benefit from a simple supply and demand situation. Everybody is moving in the summer, so there are few discounts available. In the wintertime, it’s a lot more competitive. When you schedule a winter move, you’ll likely get a better deal and have your pick of dates.

Ask for help

You should think about hiring movers or asking your friends for help. Either way, choose the right moving assistance option. You need help, and you need to be aware of that. It is hard moving in the winter.

Plan for delays

When it comes to moving, one advantage that the summer holds over the winter is the extra hours of daylight. In the winter, it gets dark at 4:30, so that’s something that you have to take into consideration. You shouldn’t plan a move that’s going to last ten hours and end at seven in the evening—that’s not an ideal situation for the movers. With fewer daylight hours, a move that you would normally expect to take one day may take two. Be sure to keep your expectations realistic. As much as possible, try to stay flexible in the event that the move needs to be rescheduled altogether because of inclement weather.

Clean the driveway and porch of snow or ice

 Whether it is slush, hail, ice, or snow, any winter barrier will always delay the pickup, loading, and delivery for any individual. This is why, before your moving crew arrives at your current home, you should shovel all walkways and driveways for easy access. You can also cover all walkways with salt to ensure that nobody will slip and fall while carrying your belongings; you wouldn’t want any accidents that could become your liability on this already stressful day. Also, if there is plenty of snow on the road in front of your home, you may want to consider shoveling the snow there as well just so that the moving truck can conveniently access your driveway. Keep some salt and shovels in your car because you may have to use these materials at your new home as well. Cover your floors and carpets to avoid any mess or stains caused by people bringing in snow on their shoes.

Prepare something warm to drink for the movers.

During the loading process, it is a nice gesture to offer a warm beverage to your moving crew that is working in the cold weather. This would probably result in even better service as well. You could prepare some hot tea, hot chocolate, or even offer warm milk to the moving professionals. The crew would probably consist of only 2 or 3 members; therefore you won’t spend a lot of money by performing this appreciative gesture.

Have healthy snacks available to family members.

Usually, moves take about 4-9 hours, depending on the size of the house and how furnished each room is. Since everyone will be working to speed up the process, they would definitely work faster and diligently if your family will have access to healthy snacks or prepared meals. Considering your refrigerator will be empty at this time, you should think ahead and prepare a list of the foods not to pack. For example, you can have fruits like apples and pears available on the counter or you can make tuna sandwiches and keep them in a small cooler in the kitchen. If this is not your concern, you can always order pizza from a local pizza shop to keep everyone full and satisfied.

Have a backup plan

If a winter storm is threatening your move, make sure you have a backup plan in case you need to reschedule your move. If you’ve hired movers, talk to the company to see what their policy is in terms of winter conditions. Some movers are used to winter weather and may not be willing to postpone the move. If the movers do want to postpone, make sure you speak to your real estate agent or landlord to see if you can stay a few extra days. Typically, if you’re not able to move out, no one can move in, either. But arrange this ahead of time. If you can’t negotiate extra days, speak to the movers about your options. They may still be able to pick up your things, but not deliver them to your new home. If this is the case, you’ll need short-term accommodation. Find out how to secure short-term accommodation.

Have an emergency contact list with you

Make sure you have all the necessary phone numbers with you, including roadside assistance, highway patrol, and a number for reports on highway conditions. You should also ensure that someone who isn’t moving with you has a copy of your travel plans. Make a call-in schedule with that person so they’ll know where you are and when you should be arriving.

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