Moving In the Time of Corona: Tips for Relocating During a Pandemic

I was compensated for this post. Additionally, nothing in this post is to be taken as factual, scientific data. It is purely my own thoughts...

I was compensated for this post. Additionally, nothing in this post is to be taken as factual, scientific data. It is purely my own thoughts and opinions about the moving process and what our experience was like.

I don’t think anyone makes plans to move during a pandemic. It just doesn’t seem like the most efficient or safest time to make such a big transition, or move all your stuff from place to place. But it’s actually a pretty popular time to move between places, and that’s seeming to ring true for individuals and business alike. Maybe it’s the need for a change of scenery, since so many of us are living and working in our houses, so we kind of want a place we can all really enjoy. Or it could be the unfortunate need to move due to finances and rent payments. Or maybe it’s because interest rates for home loans are some of the lowest rates they’ve been in years. For businesses, many are downsizing or closing their physical office locations in lieu of allowing employees to work from home for the foreseeable future. Either way, moving locations is a very realistic and practical decision right now, but it’s got to be done smartly and safely.
We’d been shopping to buy our first home for close to 10 months when we found a house we really liked. Our offer was accepted in late February and our closing scheduled for a Thursday in mid-March. I took that Thursday and Friday off work, and then the seriousness of COVID came to light in the U.S. I never went back to work. It’s been great to really get to know our home during these past six months, but moving was very scary in the time of corona.

I wanted to share some tips for moving or relocating during this weird and scary time, whether you do it yourself, hire someone, or somewhere in between. 

Pack Ahead.

Okay, this is just moving 101, in general. Always pack ahead. I typically start as early as a month out, dependent upon the move date and when we actually know we’re moving. I don’t start packing until things are kind of set in stone because I get worried about jinxing the situation. I pack up the things I’m not using daily like books I’ve already read, some of the stockpiled toiletries, decorative items. Closer to the move date, I start packing up things like dishes, while still leaving one or two of each item (plate, bowl, flatware, cups) that can be used and immediately washed. These are all pretty standard, normal things, pandemic or not.

Clean As You Go.

But don’t just clean… sanitize. I was Lysol spraying everything, or wiping things down with Clorox wipes before putting them into bags or boxes. Then while you’re unpacking, wash dishes and beddings before jumping straight into using them. It’s all so tedious, but moving is a tedious thing. You want to make sure you’re taking as many precautions as possible.

Figure Out How You’re Actually Moving Your Stuff.

When we were deciding how to move, we had a lot of things to consider. We had pretty basic furniture to move and were only going about 20 minutes down the road. The pandemic was in full force so I wasn’t comfortable asking lots of friends and family for help like we’ve done in the past. We had one friend help us and we spent a lot of time washing our hands over and over and constantly spraying things down with Lysol. And with that help, he literally just helped us load and unload, but we really put everything where it needed to go. We rented a Uhaul for a few hours just for the furniture. Everything that could fit in my Prius, I went back and forth for. We were lucky enough that we had about two weeks overlap, so we were able to take our time getting the smaller things. This was most cost efficient for us and made the most sense in terms of not having contact with folks if we could help. But hopping in the Uhaul was scary. I showed up with disinfectant spray and wipes. I literally drove with the wipes between my hands and the steering wheel (which actually really irritated my skin). I'd also recommend a mask in a rented vehicle, too, because who knows what you're breathing in. Don't be embarrassed by taking precautions!

However how we did things may not be ideal, or even feasible, for most folks. In that case, it may make more sense to hire folks to do it all for you. Typically it’s the most efficient option, though can be pricier than a do-it-yourself job. But it could be the best option if you’ve got a lot of stuff, a long way to go, or very little time to get things done in. Luckily, our area has a ton of options if we did need help with our relocation. From Atlanta Government movers to white glove service to help packing and everything in between, Atlanta Peach Movers can really meet needs big and small. Whether it’s gathering supplies or even storing items, they can just about do it all. If outsourcing to a company like Atlanta Peach Movers, I would highly recommend requesting they wear masks or follow other safety precautions to keep you and your loved ones safe. We’ve had to have a few services complete in our house since moving in, and I even wear a mask in my own home, then spray down any rooms they were in or any door knobs touched. It may seem excessive, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. 

Stay Hydrated.

Drink lots of water. It's basically good for every part of your body. We invested in lots of Emergen-C packets too, and would drink one everyday. It's got a ton of vitamins in it that are great for your immune system.

Have you made a move in the past several months? What was your experience like?

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  1. I haven't moved in a few years - this is actually the longest I've lived anywhere since I lived with my mom growing up! - but these are all great times. I'm getting nervous about the prospect of buying a house & moving in a pandemic...

    1. Yeah, it is certainly a stressful time. Luckily we were viewing homes and almost done with the buying process before the pandemic hit - we just had closing and moving once things got wild. I can't imagine the rest of the buying process during this time.