Although the majority of PCS orders are given in the warmer months of the year, many military families are saddled with the additional stress of moving in the winter.
Whether you’re trying a DITY move or a more traditional PCS move, moving in the winter presents unique problems that you need to be prepared to handle.
Here are some great tips to make sure you get where you’re supposed to be safely.
1. The number one rule for a successful winter move is to keep an eye on the weather. Check the radio and your phone often if there is potential for storms. Even if you checked a few days beforehand, keep updated because winter weather can change quickly.
2. Keep your winter weather supplies handy. Don’t pack up things like snow shovels, ice melt and ice scrapers. You might need them to clear paths to your new place and make sure everything is safe for you and your fellow movers.
3. If you’re using a moving service or truck rental company make sure you have their number programmed into your phone for emergencies.
4. If you’re doing a DITY move, try to find as much help as possible so no one is stuck in the cold all day.
5. Remember to keep the moving truck as well as your car clean. Put down a tarp in the truck to avoid any additional cleaning fees and put down something in your car so you don’t ruin your carpets with winter slop.
6. Remember that not everything will make it through a cold move. If something will freeze or break in the cold weather make sure to pack them separately in your vehicle rather than the back of a moving truck.
7. If you’re moving a long distance, be sure to fully service your car before you head out. Cars are especially sensitive when it’s cold out, and if you break down during freezing temperatures you can put you and your family in danger.
8. Finally, know when to turn the heat on and off. Make sure you keep the heat on at your old place long enough to completely move everything out but not so long that you’re wasting money on two utility bills. Also make sure to call your new utility company ahead of time so the heat will be on when you get there. Not only are moves more uncomfortable when the house is freezing, some of your temperature sensitive items will need to be moved in right away.
Even though winter moves can be a challenge, be positive and remember that it’s not all bad. For example, moving in the winter can save a lot of money because truck rental and moving fees are a lot cheaper. Stay patient, take your time and enjoy your new place!
Image courtesy of Glenn Harper via Flickr’s Creative Commons