The holiday season is the cheapest time of the year for moving! While moving in the midst of the holiday season isn't the easiest, it's sometimes necessary. Perhaps a sudden and unexpected promotion at work requires you to relocate and start your new position right after the holidays are over. If so, the best thing to do is to remain level-headed and always try to plan a few steps ahead, so that you're prepared for anything that may arise.
With so many variables in play, such as the unpredictable winter weather and busy holiday schedules, it's easy to get overwhelmed. This guide will give the top 5 tips to help you move during the holidays.
1. Find a moving company as soon as possible
The first thing to do, especially during a busy time of the year like the holidays, is to find a moving company to handle your move.
Get started comparing moving quotes as soon as possible, and notify the moving companies of your planned moving date as far in advance.
- Make a list of moving companies that can service your move and compare quotes. Try to get an on-site estimate as this method will typically yield the most accurate quote.
- Start with some simple background check on a moving company. Doing a lot of research on the movers is the best way to help you avoid scams.
- Plan for delays. Everyone wants time off during the holidays, including movers (who will often have reduced operating hours or smaller working crews during the holiday season), so your delivery may be a little delayed Also, equipment rental stores, storage facilities and utility companies operate on different schedules, affecting several different aspects of your move.
One of the benefits of moving during the holidays is moving companies tend to charge less for their services because the demand is low. Not many people choose to move during the holidays, for obvious reasons, so your chances of finding a great deal on a moving company are greater.
2. Stay in contact with your moving company
The moving company you hire should have all of your contact information, like your phone number and email address. Also, give your schedule and moving timetable with family members who are assisting you with your move, to ensure that everyone is fully aware of the plan. Laying everything out on the table will eliminate any possible confusion or scheduling conflicts, which can lead to delays during the move.
- Keep your schedule close, so you always know what's going on
- Pay everything on time and stay within your budget
- Create a To-Do for each step of the way
3. Check on weather and traffic
Sudden snowstorms and blizzards can occur with only a few days notice and cripple a region for days at a time, severely limiting travel and making it next to impossible to accomplish anything, let alone a major relocation. For parts of the country, this isn't an issue, but in the Northeast, Midwest, and Northwest, the weather can take a turn for the worst in a matter of hours during the winter. The last thing you want is an unexpected snowstorm to derail your move and make an already difficult situation even harder.
There are a few things you can do to make sure that you're prepared for winter weather:
- Aggressively check the weather forecast for the days during which you plan on moving. This means check them early and check them often, as weather forecasts can change several times a day. If a snowstorm or other bad winter weather is on its way towards you, you want to know as soon as possible so you can prepare for it.
- Winterize your home, your vehicle, and your shipment. If you even suspect a small dusting of snow, make sure to sprinkle salt on your walkways and driveway and on any steps leading to your house for the movers. You don't want any of the movers slipping on snow or ice and injuring themselves during the move. Also, make sure you have your car or truck ready to drive in bad weather if you're driving to your new home. This means checking your lights and wipers and making sure your tires are safe to drive in ice and snow.
- Prepare yourself for anything and everything. We all know what kind of difficulties bad winter weather can create, but the most important part of overcoming these difficulties and lessening their overall impact is preparing to handle them when they arrive, however unexpected they may be.
Of course, bad weather is not the only variable that you'll have to plan for when you're moving during the holiday season, one of the busiest times of the year. You'll also have to watch for traffic. Out of all the different forms of traffic, holiday traffic is by far the worst. Massive amounts of people clogging all major roadways heading to visit friends and family or go shopping leads to a major traffic headache, no matter where you are in the country.
Avoid this by monitoring the traffic on the major interstates and highways that you'll be traveling on moving day, and try to schedule your traveling to avoid the busiest times, such as Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.
4. Get extra help for packing
If there was ever a time to turn packing into something enjoyable, it's the holidays. For starters, your friends and family members may have more time off during the holidays to come over and help you pack. This lets you accomplish two things at once: spending time with your loved ones during the holidays and getting your packing done.
- Do not wait until the last minute for packing
- Hire a packing services company, so you can enjoy your vacation, OR
- Call some friends and family members to help you pack
- Pack your gifts items, decorative items and holiday presents together, so you can get them easier when unpacking
5. Make moving fun
The holidays are primarily a time for warmth and comfort -- for being around loved ones and the feeling of familiarity. Moving can really throw a wrench into all of that, but you don't have to let it. In fact, you can work your move right into your normal holiday traditions pretty seamlessly.
- Send holiday-themed moving announcements instead of holiday greeting cards
- Let your kids send Santa a letter with their new address
- If you're feeling down, get out of the house and explore your new town
- Unpack while listening to holiday music
The important thing to remember is you can celebrate the holiday traditions that you so fondly remember wherever you go.