If you’re considering a summer move, you’re not alone. Out of the millions of people who will pack up and change their addresses this year, over half will do so between the months of May and September. This means — yes, even during a pandemic — that movers and trucks are at a premium, and time is of the essence just when summer heat is at its prime.
Fortunately, whether you’re hiring a moving crew or planning to U-Haul it, there are a number of ways you can make your summertime move a bit more bearable.
One of the most important things to do is get your moving team in place. If you’re hiring a local mover, you’ll want to call around for availability and estimates as a first step. For DIY movers, it may mean asking friends and family to come help.
While either is an option, Hardy Auston, owner of HD Auston Moving Systems, notes that there are added considerations for both.
“Local moves are based on time, so the less time you take and the more you plan ahead, the less it will cost,” he says. “If you’re planning to do it yourself, make sure you have adequate help, as well as a plan in case people don’t show up.”
Plan for special items
While most things will find a temporary placement in cardboard boxes, there are a few things you’ll want to make special plans for, and at the top of that list are your family pets.
“Make sure you make plans for your pets specifically,” says Two Men and a Truck owner Rebecca Feldman. “Don’t let them be out and about around the movers, but you don’t want to leave them out in the heat all day, either.”
Additionally, Feldman notes, make a plan for your large appliances like fridges and freezers, which should be defrosted and emptied a few days prior to the move to ensure they don’t have water running out of them during transport. Things that can melt — like candles — should be transported separately and kept cool, and televisions are heat and cold sensitive, so make sure they can adapt to a more standard temperature before being plugged in. Finally, chemicals or combustibles like fuel or cleaning products need to be moved separately in your car — “moving companies typically won’t move them for you, but it’s easier to mark the box and carry them separately,” Feldman says.
Along with the standard challenges of real estate purchases, sales and leases, the added summer move traffic means that a lot can happen, and Auston stresses the importance of staying flexible.
“With the nature of things, you’re going to have organic delays like closings or paperwork, so do your best to nail that down to a schedule and let your mover know if you have any changes,” he says. Keep in mind, he adds, that sometimes small timeline changes can have a big impact. “Just as one hiccup happens, sometimes two or three happen. That may mean a moving delay, having to hold stuff overnight, or even switching moving companies, but we all want to do the best we can to get you settled.”
How to keep cool during a summer move
- Stay hydrated. Lugging boxes in hundred-degree heat isn’t fun for anyone, but it’s crucial that you do what you can to prevent the heat from setting in. Make sure you’re drinking water constantly throughout the day.
- Go early. When possible, do most of your moving during the morning or evening hours, when the outdoor temperature is a bit lower. Even a few degrees can make a big difference.
- Turn on the A/C. As soon as you have access, make sure your new home or apartment is regulated by turning on the air before you start moving things in. This will also help appliances adjust a bit faster to their environment.