Moving During A Pandemic
Are you moving or planning on moving during a pandemic? Most of us have been impacted in some form by the novel coronavirus. But those of us in the midst of moving are dealing with a whole other animal. Other than the obvious precautions such as social distancing, wearing a mask, and washing your hands, there really are no rules on how to handle a move during a pandemic.
And while we can breathe a sigh of relief knowing pandemics are far and few and between, the current state of the world has forced us all to think outside the box and be prepared for any scenario. So, before you start packing for your “pandemic” move, here are a few things to keep in mind for a safe and smooth experience.
Can you postpone your move?
If there is one word you associate with “pandemic,” it’s probably “essential.” Essential businesses, essential store runs, essential workers, etc. When deciding what to do about your move, the first thing you should probably ask is, “Is this an essential move?” Can your moving plans wait? If so, then it would absolutely be in your best interest to wait.
If you can’t be flexible about your move for some reason, consider moving using only your own vehicle or renting a truck. Note that some states and cities might cancel their moving services due to mandatory laws. If you were relying on a moving service to complete your move, you might have to make room for plan B.
Look into storage space.
There is a possibility that you might need to go through this extra step when moving during a pandemic. For example, if you don’t have to be at your new place any time soon, but you absolutely need to be out of your old home, you might need to settle for putting your things in storage for a while. Most storage companies should be continuing operations through the pandemic. Still, they will have significant rules in place for safe and sanitary storage. Make sure to call ahead and inquire about any unique protocols you need to follow.
Cancel your pandemic move.
If you are considering canceling your move altogether but are nervous about it, don’t be. If you hired a moving company and need to cancel, it shouldn’t be a problem. Most moving contracts are non-binding, which means you shouldn’t have a financial penalty if you cancel during a specific time frame. As far as the deposit, the terms vary by company, so make sure to read the contract ahead of time to decide what will work in your best interest.
If you are moving solo or with a friend’s help, it should be easier to cancel the move. It’ll probably feel a lot better to push things back rather than struggle through an impossible situation.
Are you sick?
This one is HUGE! You can find many ways to keep your moving plans while in a pandemic, but you need to bring everything to a halt if you are sick. If you so much as suspect you are sick, that should be a sign to automatically stop the move for the time being. Seriously, if you think you’re sick, don’t risk the health and safety of those around you.
The recommended quarantine period will determine how long the move will be delayed. You’ll also need to inform anyone involved in your move about your illness, especially if you have been in physical contact with them. Transparency is key during this time to help ensure everyone’s safety.
Also, if you are sick or feeling sick, remember to be extra diligent about sanitizing all your belongings. Wear gloves and a mask when packing, even if you’re feeling better. Additionally, if you have movers or friends helping you move, you will need to practice social distancing. Try staying as far away from them as possible throughout the whole move.
Moving without help during a pandemic.
We understand that moving can be overwhelming. The idea of doing it by yourself might be too much for you to handle. But would you be surprised to learn that plenty of people do it every year?
For one, if you are moving during a pandemic, you probably won’t have much of an option but to ask friends or family to help out. There is also a chance you might be dealing with some unforeseen downtime. Unlike the chaotic time crunch you usually have to deal with during a regular move, you can use this extra time to slowly and safely handle all moving responsibilities.
Of course, some things will practically be impossible to handle by yourself (we’ve certainly never heard of anyone carrying out a grand piano to a moving truck alone). If you definitely need help loading things like furniture into a truck, make sure to plan ahead and follow your state’s safety protocols.
Keep all the pandemic essentials around.
No matter how you decide to move, remember to keep a bag of essentials with you at all times. This includes things like:
- Masks (face coverings)
- Disposable gloves
- Hand sanitizer
- Disinfectant wipes
- Disinfecting spray
These items will help ensure everyone involved in your move is safe.
More than anything, moving during a pandemic requires additional mental preparation. It comes down to the added task of safety precautions that will protect everyone involved in the move. You will have to disinfect everything you’re packing, practice social distancing. If you’re using a professional moving company, you will likely need to adhere to an additional set of rules.
Remember that you are not alone. If you feel overwhelmed, ask for help. Most moving companies have come up with brilliant ways to handle the pandemic safely, and they are more than happy to help.
If you have no choice but to ask friends and/or family to help, that is ok too, as long as you follow all safety guidelines.