Moving to a New Home During COVID-19 – How to Move Safely
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life as we know it. Most of us are hunkering down in our homes in an effort to stop the spread of the virus.
But what if you were making plans for a move before this all happened? What should you be doing now? Can you still move? Should you try to wait it out? It’s complicated.
- Clean the New House
- Consider a Self-Move
- Hiring Movers
- Packing Your Things Safely
- Working with Movers
The current recommendation is to put off moving into a new home until the crisis is over, but sometimes, that just isn’t possible. If you have no choice but to move to a new home during the crisis, these tips will help you move as safely as possible.
Clean the New House
Sounds like common sense, right? Well, one of the things we’ve noticed when someone is moving into a brand new home is they don’t feel like they have to give it the same scrubbing they’d give an older resale house. When you see how shiny your brand-new home looks, many are tempted to forego that deep cleaning.
While we take every precaution possible to keep our homes clean and safe, we still recommend you give the new place a thorough cleaning once you move in, especially if you have help moving or if you borrow a vehicle to transport your belongings.
It’s also a good idea to clean your possessions as thoroughly as possible both before and after you move.
Consider a Self-Move
Moving really is so much easier when you hire a moving company, but this is a time when many are second-guessing the options. And with good reason.
At this time, you should think about doing it on your own with a rental truck. Moving companies are operating as safely as possible – and we’ll be going over things to ask them in just a minute – but having others move your belongings is introducing unknown elements into the equation. If at all possible, consider doing the whole move yourself. Yes, it’ll be more work, but ultimately it’s the safer option.
Don’t feel bad if you can’t do the move entirely on your own! A lot of people can’t. Fortunately, at this time moving companies are still considered an essential business and are allowed to continue their operations. So go ahead and call them if you need to.
If possible, ask about getting a virtual estimate. Under normal circumstances, we’d recommend against this. People often underestimate how much stuff they have, and are then surprised when the moving company bill is more than they thought. However, it’s possible to take the movers on a virtual tour. For the most accurate estimate, make sure you’re showing them everything you want them to move.
Additionally, you want to ask about safety procedures with the company. They should be providing workers with masks and gloves. Most companies assign their workers a team so they’re always working with the same person and limiting contacts they have. Hand sanitizer should be readily available in the truck. These little things go a long way towards keeping everyone safe.
Packing Your Things Safely
As long as you’re physically able to do so, it’s smarter to pack things into boxes on your own rather than taking advantage of a full-service mover. As always, make sure to keep a list of what goes in each box so you can easily access the things you’ll need the most, and consider colour-coding the boxes to make it easier to put them in the correct rooms.
Working with Movers
On the day of the move, you may feel better if you take a more active role in overseeing the movers. We’re not suggesting you have to keep a watchful eye on whether or not they’re sneezing and coughing. We just think you’ll feel better knowing they’re following safety procedures.
You’ll also want to stay close behind (but not too close – at least two meters apart!) so you can immediately sanitize the big pieces of furniture as they bring it into your new home, while it’s easy to do.
Another option? If it works for you, you can ask the movers to place all of your boxes in the garage or basement, and then move those things on your own. This will limit the amount of time that other people spend in your home.
Some people do choose to postpone their move, but it isn’t the right choice for everyone. If you have to move, taking these steps can keep your family as safe as possible.
To learn what Sterling Homes is doing about COVID-19, read our action plan here.