You are doing all you can to prepare for your upcoming move this winter. Unfortunately, the colder months bring inclement weather and a host of other issues to consider. Your move can still be successful and painless if you keep in mind the season. Here are some helpful safety tips for a wintertime move that you may have overlooked.
Plan Ahead for Complications
You are more likely to avoid hazardous outcomes when you plan ahead. Keep tabs on the impending weather for the day you are moving. Implement a Plan B in case there is a shift in the weather. Long distance moves will require investigation into the weather at both locations.
Remember, not only will you be driving to the new location; the moving van with all your possessions will travel there, too. Bad weather may delay a truck even though your sedan can get through. You may have to spend an extra few days in a hotel as your move-in day could change.
Check the road conditions for the entire moving route. Besides the weather, check for road closures and detours. There are plenty of online traffic sites that will provide you with detailed road conditions to help make your trip go smoother.
At the very least, doing a little research can save you a lot of angst during the trip or on the other end. Invest in tarps, shelter tents and salt for walkways just to cover all your bases.
Ditch or Donate Unnecessary Items
As a rule of thumb, you want to sell, donate or trash anything that will not be unpacked and used in your new home. You want to do this well before your moving day. This will eliminate the transportation of extra boxes, furniture and appliances that will clutter up your new garage or basement until you can dispose of them.
Look into Personal Vehicle Upkeep
Prior to moving day, winterize your personal vehicle. You don’t want to find out your car needs servicing the day before a long drive.
A drastic change from warm to cold can take a toll on your vehicle. Even if your car was recently serviced, do another a quick check of fluids, tires and wipers if for no other reason than to provide you peace of mind.
Prepare for Snow, Ice, and Rain
Thoroughly shovel out snow from walkways and driveways. If ice is an issue, scatter salt or kitty litter on walking paths to prevent falls. Winter moves can be a messy process. Lay down tarps on carpeted areas to prevent stains and water damage. Inevitably, debris and sludge will be carried in on your shoes. Lay down cardboard boxes, towels or extra carpet on slippery surfaces.
Heat the House
You should wait to turn off the heat in your old house until after moving day. Your house gives your moving team a place of refuge from the cold and will allow for a timelier exiting process.
Use a Professional Service
Enlisting a professional moving service removes a lot of the tedious and stressful aspects of the typical move. If you are debating whether to hire a professional, let the winter aspect help convince you to say yes. Professionals have experience driving in all kinds of weather. A reliable company will have expert drivers and packers who know how to load and unload a van to minimize movement and possible breakage.
Using white glove movers will ensure that even your most valuable possessions make it to their new home in perfect condition.
Plan for your moving team to arrive early in the day so the work is finished before the sun sets. Remember, in the winter, you have fewer hours of daylight. You want to take advantage of every minute of sunlight.
Damage to belongings and injuries are more likely to occur if it is too dark to see. Icy patches or objects along the path to the van can cause a mover to slip and possibly get injured, not to mention possibly damage some of your possessions.
Keep Safety Essentials
Leave out essential safety items when you are packing. Designate and clearly mark a specific box for your safety gear to permit easy access throughout the move. Pack this box early and consider moving it to the trunk of your car or someplace where it won’t accidentally get mixed in with the rest of your possessions.
Write on it in big, bold letters “DO NOT PACK” so the moving company will know you do not want it packed in the van.
Make this box of safety essentials more than just a first aid kit. Include first aid items like Band-Aids, antibiotics and any other medicines or materials you might need to address an injury.
Other important items to include in this box include flashlights, ice scrapers, cell phone chargers, emergency blankets, gloves, hats, cereal bars and bottled water.
Emergency Contact List and Apps
Keep a copy of all your emergency contacts with you. Chances are you will have them as part of your contact list on your smartphone. However, in the event you get stranded or your battery dies, it is a good idea to have a backup hard copy so you can use someone else’s phone to make the call.
Include numbers like the local state police emergency numbers, the contact information for your doctor and lawyer and family information.
Don’t forget to tell someone of your travel plans, too, and ensure they have your contact information and the contact information of family members traveling with you.
Download some travel apps. There are lots of apps that will provide you with local road conditions, weather, and detour information. By downloading them, you’ll ensure the maps are on your phone and don’t require an internet connection to access.
Finally, get a few game apps to keep the children busy during the long trip. Don’t tell them ahead of time, so it is a surprise. Just be careful they don’t run down your battery! By following these safety tips, you’ll be all set for your cold weather move!